The original way to buy patterns, and my personal favourite because I like sewing without using a computer.
Neatly packaged in an envelope with an illustration/image on the front and printed fabrics requirements suggestions and body measurements, sometimes even in colour.
These are compact and complete easy to store and are ready to use immediately. Because they are not digital – you can flick through like a library and get inspired without forgetting what you own.
On the downside, not all companies offer printed patterns, which is actually a good thing because sometimes the shipping fees and the air miles are just not worth it.
Vintage sewing patterns were always printed, so thats always a nice thing to look back on.
Remember that the body of a lady of the 1930’s is very different to what you and I got today! Don”t be personally upset with the measurement math. If the numbers match your body, go for it, but if you are a standard size 14 today, you’ll have to look for a bigger size that works for your 2023 body.
Thats just how it goes, it’s not a personal attack it’s just dated info.
Personally I love the tactile nature of the vintage paper pattern although I rarely use them as the techniques are old and basic and we can all do better.
PDF Patterns at home
PDF patterns that ping straight to your email instantly! Magic!
Just don’t forget to file them neatly in the cloud somewhere cause you only get to download it a limited number of times.
New modern independent pattern designers love this option, it gets the pattern to the people without the printing and packaging overheads.
You can use an at home printer (or lets be honest – the work printer), print out 20+ pieces and cellotape them all together which is extremely labour intensive and can be messy to use afterwards.
PDF’s are harder to store because the paper is much thicker, and if you remember from school, you can only fold a piece of paper 7 times.
PDF Patterns by a pro
Or, you can upload the AO sized PDF files to a printing place and save the sticky tape.
You get both options with most pattern purchases, but double check! Sometimes its cheaper to home print small projects.
Printing PDF files means you can cut to your size and reprint your pattern over and over again until you get your fit right.
And if you are a corrupt sewer you can even hand it on to someone else to use if your choose…. No judgement, sometimes we all get into a bit of strife and need a bit of charity.
Instructions can be printed out or read on your computer or phone, links can click through sometimes and you can blow up the text and quickly check out YouTube for tutorials if you get stuck, but then on the flipside you now have your phone in your hand and likely have lost 10 minutes to checking your emails and liking shit on instagram.
You can get PDF patterns and instructions from all over the world this way, which is a fucking cool concept.
I don’t get any joy opening files on my computer looking for inspiration. But ya know, swings and roundabouts.
Have a go with them both and find your happy middle ground.
Where to get the PDF's Printed?
My fave is Plan Printing Uk
- Click to order your plans
- Plans or line drawings black
- Size AO
- Lamination – NO
- Upload files
- Add to basket
- Pay and checkout
Super straightforward, and to make the shipping worthwhile, defo do about 5 patterns at a time x
gsm – what? Thats just the paper weight – the higher the number the stronger the paper – as in, it will take up more space and thats on you cowgirl!
All of the paperweights will do the trick, some people prefer the heavy ones but I personally love tissue.
You will figure out what works for you as you experiment through your sewing journey.
Feel the love
Crafting with Brooke was brilliant. I was a complete beginner and felt totally safe and unjudged in her pro hands! Biggest thing she taught me is that any and all (crafting) mistakes can be mended or made into something more beautiful. Her patience, kindness and craic seeps into the work, I loved every minute!
When I approached Brooke to sew a stage outfit for me, I was confident she would deliver a perfect product by the looming deadline. She was great at following my brief while also advising me on what design and fabric would work best. The result exceeded expectations; I have had endless compliments on my silver sequinned cape!
Lewis of Arabia
Brooke is one of those magical people you meet for a second and feel you've known all your life. She's so insanely talented and shares it with such grace you also feel like you can accomplish such technical skills with her around. As a teacher she is knowledgeable, interesting and engaging and most importantly FUN!
Had a whale of a time!! We loved every minute of our weaving workshop at Make Town. Brooke was super friendly, approachable and made the whole experience easy and lots of fun.
Everyone should try floor loom weaving as it's absolutely brilliant and not too tricky. I've been to these sessions a number of times now and I love them.
This is great for beginners to learn weaving basics but very satisfying as I managed to experiment with colours and have a little project completed, I highly recommend it!
I absolutely LOVED my freestyle loom weaving session at Make Town. A perfect combination of being helped to learn and being left to experiment! It was my first try and in just one session I came home with a beautiful tapestry that I felt so proud of! It was great fun, and is a beautiful and relaxed space to be creative in.
Had a whale of a time!! We loved every minute of our weaving workshop at Make Town. Brooke was super friendly, approachable and made the whole experience easy and lots of fun. We learnt to weave on the floor looms, and were surprised by how big our finished pieces were at the end of the 2 hours.
Had a fantastic time at Make Town for Knitters Anonymous!! I’ve been looking for a new knitting group ever since I graduated and had to leave my university knitting society 5 years ago, and this one was amazing. Really cool to have a complete mix of abilities in the room, and it’s reassuring to know I could come back with any knitting quandary and have help!
Make Town, Make Town, MAKE TOWN!
What an incredible place to learn so many craft bits, I have been there a couple of times now and honestly learnt so much.Brooke is an absolute delight and really takes the time to get around to everyone and show/explain how everything works. It also is super colourful (which I love)! Anyways, go check it out, you won't regret it!
I recently took a weaving class with Brooke - cannot think of a better way to spend a Sunday afternoon! Brooke's a great instructor, very calm, relaxed and knowledgeable. I would happily spend many more Sundays depleting her instagram-worthy yarn wall! Also weaving is easier than it looks and very therapeutic and absorbing. Do it!
What a gem of a place! Beautiful, bright, and easy to book online. They are so helpful and encourage you to be creative in your work. We went as newbies and left feeling more confident. I would recommend this place to anyone who is looking for some creative fun or wants to build on their skills.
Make Town is fantastic. I'm in London for a few months and needed to use a sewing machine to finish a project, and it was exactly what I needed. The atmosphere was informal, relaxed and friendly, and Brooke let me get on with things but was available if I had questions. I highly recommend checking it out if you have any interest in fabric crafts: I'm going back for a mending evening!
I love this shop and the knitting course I did at Make Town was fabulous. Brooke brings so much joy to knitting and was on hand with loads of tips and tricks about knitting, craft and lots more! Highly recommend a visit to Make Town!
I did a second course at Make town, tufting! As expected, it was amazing!! Well organised, great teaching, great facilities. Can't recommend enough!
Filipa do Carmo
Would highly recommend the beginners workshop if you want to have a go at machine sewing. I ended up with a super cool bag, no fear of sewing machines and a burning desire to start making my own clothes. Brooke totally rocks and is awesome at empowering people!
I had a fantastic time at the beginners learn to sew workshop recently, Brooke is the most wonderful teacher who really knows her stuff, the techniques were demonstrated clearly from start to finish and the logic behind them thoroughly explained. I arrived unsure if I could sew a straight line and left with a project bag that I love!. I feel confident with the basics of sewing now and I'm inspired to see what else I can create. I can't recommend Make Town enough. Thank you Brooke!.
Brooke took us from ground zero to sewing a useful and tasteful bag. She’s kind, quirky and patient. She has so much creative experience. Next she is guiding me on a recycled jumper project.
Did both the beginner knitting and sew workshops. Loved them both and even as a very heavy handed clueless starter it was easily manageable! The time flew by on both occasions.
The groups I worked with were all very sweet and we got plenty of individual attention.
Brooke is an excellent teacher - as well just being an all round awesome human being. 10/10 would recommend and I definitely hope to attend some more classes in the future.
Loved this place! Highly recommend! The owner Brooke really takes care of you, and takes the time for you to learn everything in the proper way, she is so lovely 😊
The weaving class was the best thing we did during a weekend in London with my daughter. The tuition by Becky was excellent and the place is very comfortable. Within minutes we were able to get the hang of it and we each brought home a piece of weaving.
Fantastic place to learn sewing! I went to a beginner course with no prior experience and made this cute bag! Brooke is such a lovely person, was always there to help, explain and fix any problems. And the venue itself just invites you to think creatively. Will definitely be back :)
I went to a Craft Cult event, it was super friendly and nice, great to meet and discuss with other crafty people surrounded by beautiful thread and textile. Very inspiring!
I've already booked another workshop and can't wait for next month Craft Cult
I feel so lucky to have visited Make Town. It was the highlight of my trip to London for sure. Brooke, the shop owner, was incredibly welcoming and helpful. She handled all of the loom setup for me and gave me free range to select materials from more yarns and felts than you can imagine.
I went to Make Town to do the Beginners Sewing class and I couldn't have had a better time. It was great fun and I feel totally empowered to do more sewing. Can't recommend Brooke and this gem of crafty goodness more, whether you're starting out or old hat there's something to be found and take part in at Make Town.
Can't recommend this highly enough - I went to Weave Club where I could take my pick from a wall of colourful yarns to make a hanging, with Brooke on hand to share expert advice and offer new tips and techniques. The atmosphere is relaxed and the people friendly. I will definitely be back.
I went for the absolute beginners knitting workshop. Brooke couldn't be more helpful and demonstrated things in a super straightforward way.
Thoroughly enjoyed the class, met some great people and I will be going back.
Recommend Make Town and Brooke's workshops to anyone who's looking to learn how to kraft, wants to improve their kraft or just wants to hang out with some like minded folk!
The BEST! Brooke is such an amazing teacher: knowledgeable, calm, patient, super-super-super skilled and generally brilliant. From never having been in the same room as a sewing machine to making trousers and dungarees, couldn’t have done it without Brooke (and wouldn’t have wanted to!). Can’t recommend Make Town strongly enough.
Oh! And you’ll laugh. So much!
Such a fab space to get crafty in. The weaving was great ... Brooke was a great teacher - really clear and encouraging but gives you space to have a play too. 100% recommend.