Drake Makes

Creating and making

Layout and Cutting – Marking all those Shapes

Posted on 2017-07-16 in Sewing

All those marks on patterns are (usually) there for a reason, but often it just feels tedious to mark all of them. Experienced sewists are often tempted to omit the markings because “we know what it’s for and can do it during construction”, but sometimes it’s satisfying doing it anyway. But, how do you make sure they are aligned, the correct mark, stay around for as long as you need, and disappear before the finished product?

My preferred technique involves steps that are counter to the usual guidance: instead of laying out the fabric with right sides together I actually lay it out with wrong sides together, with the pattern on top. For the triangles, stick pins into two of the points/vertices:

Pin-marking the triangle on a pattern

Pin-marking the triangle on a pattern

Then, fold the fabric and pattern back along the line you’ve created, connect the lines, and complete the triangle by connecting them out to the third point/vertex:

Pen-marking the triangle on a pattern

Pen-marking the triangle on a pattern

For those curious, the pen I am using is the Frixion heat-evaporating pens. I have yet to encounter a fabric they don’t come off with some heat or steam from my iron. The only big caveat is that they can be hard to identify and stay on fluffy or dark fabrics, so I use other markings such as chalk, thread marking/tracing, or clipping.


That’s all for this post, just a quickie on how I do marking using pins. Comment below on your cool, traditional, or unusual marking methods!

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