Are your pattern envelopes stuffed full of multiple sized patterns? Do you have pieces of various patterns strewn in different places? When you want a specific pattern can you find it? What do you do with all these bits and pieces that won't fit into that paper envelope? I have the solution...perfectly organized patterns!
I used to stick all the sizes and original pattern envelope and instructions into a ziploc bag. That at least kept everything in the same place, but then when I got ready to do a particular size, I had to weed through all the different pieces to find the correct size. That was until I met Gail Doane this past summer at Martha Pullen's School of Art Fashion.
Here is what you do:
First, you'll need paper folders with the metal duo-tangs in the center, page protectors, a label maker or marker and either masking tape or painter's tape and your pattern.
[caption id="attachment_289" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Supplies needed for pattern organization.[/caption]
I purchased purple folders because that is my favorite color and I use it as my logo and theme color for Ney Ney's Stitches. You could use different colors to distinguish between boys patterns and girls' patterns or yoke-style patterns vs. a bishop style pattern, etc.
[caption id="attachment_292" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Labeling the folder.[/caption]
Next, create a label with your label maker or a marker and tape to represent the pattern you are filing. Here I'm using the famous Pascale from Sew Beautiful.
[caption id="attachment_293" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Labeling the page protectors.[/caption]
The next step is to count the number of sizes the pattern provides and add one to it. Each size will have it's own page protector and the additional protector is for the original pattern/envelope and instructions. For my Pascale pattern, I had sizes 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7. So I had 5 page protectors that I labeled with each size in my pattern and left one page protector blank to store the original pattern.
[caption id="attachment_294" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Filling the page protectors.[/caption]
Then put the page protectors into the folder with the blank one first and the numbered sizes in sequential order. Slip the original pattern and instructions into the first, blank page protector.
[caption id="attachment_295" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Adding multiple sizes to the folder.[/caption]
You will be able to see the pattern information without removing the pattern from the page protector! Then place your multiple sizes in the correct page protector. As I work on a particular project, I trace the size I need and store it. The organizational freak in me want to trace all of them at once but I don't allow myself to do this if I'm working on a custom order or a timeline.
I started adding a post it note tab with a label on the "open edge" to make it easier to find in my file cabinet. (sorry no pics of this step) The folder either goes to the file cabinet for storage...
[caption id="attachment_297" align="aligncenter" width="199"] File cabinet for storage.[/caption]
or into my project boxes for production along with all the necessary supplies for that project. (yes....they are purple too!)
[caption id="attachment_298" align="alignleft" width="300"] All supplies for a particular project.[/caption]
[caption id="attachment_299" align="alignright" width="300"] All supplies for a project stored in my purple boxes.[/caption]
Thanks for reading! Hope this helps you organize your patterns and projects!