Alright, I Admit It

I overcommitted myself this summer. Too many sew camps. Too many private lessons. Too.Much.Everything.

Is this the curse of creative spirits? An innate inability to say NO? Or is it just me? I have always been the kind of person who thinks that if a little is good, more has got to be better, right?

Well, not always, I guess. I love getting new students turned on to sewing. It is hard for me to say no, because I know the options are limited for people to learn how to sew, and particularly, to sew well. But I have not been able to pursue some new creative endeavors this summer, and I am frustrated by my lack of time/energy for some of these new things. Also not enough time for SEWING. Which is what we are all about around here, right?

So, all that to say SORRY for some radio silence around here. I miss you, dear readers. Part of my silence of course was my $#*^#$ hard drive failure. And part of it was exhaustiona bit of overwhelmed-ness. If that is even a word.

So, do tell. What have you been sewing?

Pattern Weights by Sew Maris

I have been irritated by those little lumps of lead pellet/pattern weights I bought at Joann’s. You know the ones—a package of 4 made by Dritz. The seams have started opening up, and those little pellets fall out and roll around the sewing studio. That is kind of a safety hazard, not to mention annoying. So I have been wanting to mimic a different size/shape of pattern weights that a good friend of mine bought ages ago, and I can’t seem to find them anywhere. She called them wiggle weights.

Pattern Weights by Sew Maris

Here’s how I made these little Seattle-slug-o-pattern weights.

  1. Cut bias strips 2 1/2 – 2 3/4 inches wide
  2. Serge into a tube, and turn right side out with your handy Fasttube turners.
  3. Cut into 8 or 9 inch pieces.
  4. Secure one end. (I just tied embroidery floss in a square knot, and wrapped some more around, and tied another square knot)

Pattern weights by Sew Maris

5. Fill with lead pellets or something heavy. Or get some cute kids to do it for you. Sometimes a chunk of a plastic straw might be helpful.

6. Secure the other end.

Pattern Weights by Sew Maris

Ta-da!  Plop these little guys down on your pattern pieces and get to cutting. I don’t know that my system will hold up any better than the purchased ones, but I am giving it a try anyway. Oh, and I used home dec weight fabric to increase the sturdiness factor. You could also interface.

Happy sewing!



13 Responses to Alright, I Admit It

  1. Maris, Have you ever tried using big flat washers as pattern weights? They’re thin, round, about the size of a half-dollar, and have a hole in the center. From the hardware store. No sewing required. Maybe that takes some of the fun out of it, but I’d probably rather be working on the pattern. Thanks for your words of wisdom and inspiration. Gika

    • Hi Gika! I have some of those – and they work great, too! My little project was just to keep to the lead pellets from rolling around my sewing studio, plus I kind of like the longer shape of these weights. Hope you have a great day sewing!!


  2. Sorry to hear you’re under the pump Maris. Your little weights are a great idea, I might try it with rice. I’m in the middle of a built by wendy knit dress but am also about to start the grainline alder dress. Hope you get some self-sewing done soon! X

    • Thanks Sarah! My own fault, really. You would think I would have learned how to pace myself a bit better after 61 years, but still learning every day! 😉

  3. Overwhelmed-ness is absolutely a word in my world. I’m living with it right now and I don’t like it one bit! Foes it go along with the need we feel to be constantly creating something because that in itself feels so good? No matter the reason my headspace had been partially occupied with thinking about setting up my own sewing room – I have a lovely place to see right now in my bedroom, cut in the dining room and store fabric in the guest room. I’m ready to make a change and create a happy place where I can get away and sew to my hearts content – it’s time. Not sure how my grandsons are going to deal when they find their playroom has been shifted but I think they can adapt.

    I’ve been wanting to make pattern weights for quite a while and it seems these long ones would work better around a seam than the square type I have seen before. I think I need these for my new room – especially if I can leave them out on my own cutting table! Leopard print wiggle weights are what I want!! Thanks for the post Maris – take it easy 🙂

  4. Those weight are genius! I have some great plastic doughnut-shaped weights from Prym (with little grippy spikes on the bottom) which are great but they don’t work well for long, thin pieces, so I’m definitely going to make some of these too. Thank you for the idea.

    I’m currently working on perfectly fitting my blocks/slopers that I just took a class to start making, and I’m really excited to start designing from them too. Hope you get back into some fun sewing soon!

  5. Hi, Maris, this is my first visit here. What fun! Where would one find lead pellets? What could be substituted if one did not have access to lead pellets. These are probably dumb questions, but I ask any way. Thanks. Have a great weekend.


    • Thanks Lalilybeth! My husband tells me that likely it was steel “shot” that was used – that lead is toxic and much more difficult to purchase. He suggested going to a fishing tackle store or a “shooter” store to purchase steel shot. He said it comes in a variety of sizes. Good luck!

  6. Thanks, Maris. Good, I was a bit worried about lead, but steel “shot” is good. I’m off to one of those fun stores! Thanks for you help. Have a great day.

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