Crafter Thoughts: The Design Process

When you read a blog post about one of my projects, you may not realize what happens behind the scenes before every tutorial and pattern is published. It's a process that can take hours or even days to complete.

Before I begin photographing the steps or writing the directions I have to design the finished product and it usually takes a few tries to get it right. My Japanese knot bag is a perfect example.

A friend gave me the idea for the bag style, but it was up to me to create the pattern. I got out my big roll of white paper, drawing and measuring tools, and a few circle templates (yes, sometimes I use my plates and bowls to draw circles).

Behind the scenes: The process of designing a sewing pattern

As I was sketching, I realized that even if my pattern turned out perfectly, I wouldn't be able to share it electronically at it's original size, so I had to figure out how to create a printable pattern that readers could easily enlarge.
Then, I got out the sewing machine to see if my design was actually feasible. I ended up making six, less than perfect prototypes. I like to think of them as learning experiences.
After each bag was finished, I  analyzed what features I liked, and which ones needed to be modified. Here are just a few of my pattern drafts.
After finalizing my Japanese knot bag pattern, I was able to get out the pretty fabric and photograph all of the steps in the sewing process, as well as the finished bag.

Behind the scenes: The process of designing a Japanese knot bag sewing pattern

Do you prefer to design your own sewing patterns, purchase paper patterns at a store or find printable patterns on the internet?

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The Chilly Dog: Crafter Thoughts: The Design Process
Crafter Thoughts: The Design Process
Behind the scenes: Designing a Japanese knot bag sewing pattern
The Chilly Dog
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