If you’ve never worked with PDF patterns before it’s good to read something about how they work first. I actually prefer PDF since I don’t mind the cutting and taping of pages – the two tips below make it go pretty fast. Since there are already a couple of good tutorials for the whole process out there I’m not going give you my version of the story, but instead provide you with a short work order list. You can check the links at the bottom of the post for more elaborate tutorials on how to print and assemble your PDF patterns.
- Download the .zip file from your account or the email we sent you
- Extract the files by right clicking the file and choosing ‘extract’
- Open the pattern file with Adobe Reader (also on Mac, don’t use Preview!)
- For the Zircon, Opal and Amber: Click on the ‘layers’ icon on the left (looks like two squares) and select the sizes you want to print. For the other patterns: go to step 5.
- Print the first page of the pattern, with scaling off or at 100%
- Check the dimensions of the square
- If it’s correct, print the rest of the pages
- Trim the right and bottom edge off
- Tape together or use a glue stick, matching the pages according to the numbers
- Cut or trace the pattern pieces
- Store in a ziplock bag or your preferred method
Cutting and taping
One trick of my own I’d like to add is to use a paper trimmer to cut the edges off the printed pages. A paper cutter is not expensive and doing up to 3 pages at a time, it can save you a lot of time.
When it comes to taping the pages, I found that a glue stick does the job pretty well. I just use a regular Pritt glue stick. It’s faster than tape and I like that you can do the whole edge instead of a few places where you tape. I still tape the places along the edges of the pattern pieces, and in the intersection of 4 pages.
Each of these blogposts lays out the basics plus a few tips and tricks to make things easier. Note that these are written for their own patterns, things like connecting markers might be different.
- How to assemble PDF patterns quickly and efficiently by Sewaholic
- How to use PDF sewing patterns (with downloadable checklist) by Colette Patterns
- The ins and outs of PDF patterns by Thread Theory
- How to use digital sewing patterns by Tilly and the Buttons
- How to print at a Copy Shop by Sew Mama Sew
If you have any helpful tips in addition to these, please leave a comment.