Ashley Hough

Adding Seam Allowances to a Sewing Pattern

Ashley Hough
Featured image for this video
Duration:   5  mins

When drawing your own pattern, adding seam allowances can be time consuming, as you are essentially having to draw your pattern a second time. Ashley Hough shows a quick and easy way to draw in seam allowances on a pattern piece using two pencils at the same time.

Adding Seam Allowances

One of the basics of pattern making is drawing in a seam allowance on the pattern. Doing this ensures that you cut out all of the pattern pieces large enough so that when they are stitched together they fit perfectly. However, adding seam allowances can be tedious. Ashley shares a quick and easy way to add a seam allowance, in several different sizes, to your pattern pieces by using two pencils.

Ashley demonstrates how taping together two pencils allows you to draw two evenly spaced lines at the same time. She explains what kind of pencil she likes to use and why and how far apart your lines will be if you simply tape the pencils together. She shows that a standard No. 2 pencil, rather than a mechanical pencil, works better with the technique as it has several flat sides. This makes it much easier to tape together than a pencil that is round.

She then demonstrates how to use the same technique for adding seam allowances in different sizes by spacing apart the pencils. Ashley shows how different items such as fabric, cardboard or square dowels can be used to space the pencils. While fabric and cardboard are both great supplies to use if only adding a small amount of space between the pencils, if adding a significant amount of space between the pencils, the dowels are the better choice as they are sturdier.