Archive for the ‘speedy sewing’ category

Speedy Patterns – to sew in 3 hours or less – 2022

July 23, 2022

These times assume you’re an experienced sewer !
And they usually only mean sewing time, not including preparation and cutting time. So not pattern assembly and fabric washing/ ironing times !

This started from a list of all the timed patterns I found in print in November 2016. Since then I’ve been adding individual patterns when I’ve come across them. And July 2022 I’ve checked the links.

I’ve posted several times on the topic of quick-make patterns, starting in 2010. My last post (March 2016) expanded so much it was getting unwieldy. So I divided it in two :
– the basis of this post, on patterns the companies claim a sewing time for,
– a second post on patterns that are also very quick and easy, though no one makes any claims about how long you’ll need : Very quick and easy patterns which are not timed.

Obviously these patterns have to avoid any technique that takes time. So they’re very simple, with few added design features and little shaping. But there are designers who manage to respond to this need by providing interesting shapes and design features that don’t need much work.

It’s also helpful to know which sewing techniques you’re relaxed about. For example, most quick patterns avoid zips and buttonholes, collars and set-in sleeves, any hand sewing. But if you’re a sewist who can do those in a whizz, then why not.

After all, this series of posts started as a reaction to a post by Sue Neall, who sewed an Adri designer pattern plus a caftan as a wardrobe-in-a-weekend. She made 6 garments in 2 days ! Her weekend included changing the patterns to fit, bias cuts, 2 zips, double-felled seams, bias strip facings. . . She didn’t apparently work all night 😀

Fabric choice can be crucial. Quality fabrics can give a luxury look to even the simplest of styles (see Eileen Fisher for examples). Choose wovens with a bit of body, so they don’t need much support from interfacing and don’t change shape while you’re sewing them. Not slippery, don’t fray easily. This is not the time to be trying viscose or thin silks. Similarly with knits – choose stable ones, that aren’t too floppy. Knits have the advantage they don’t fray, so no need for seam finishing. And there are non-knit fabrics like this too.

– – –

Big 4 timed patterns

These are the Big 4 time-limited patterns available in July 2022.
Most Simplicity-New Look patterns have a download option.

Tops, Dresses, Shirts

All the dress patterns can be shortened to tops and tunics, and the tops and tunics lengthened to (maxi) dresses.

New Look 6483 sleeveless and sleeved woven tops.

New Look 6892 peasant style tops.

McCall’s 6558 peasant style tops and dresses.

New Look 6347 sleeveless dresses.

New Look 6889 sleeveless and short sleeved dresses.

New Look 6352 sleeveless and short sleeved dresses.

McCall’s 5893 sleeveless and short sleeved empire waist dresses, knits.

McCall’s 6465 sleeveless and sleeved dresses.

Also for men :

Simplicity 8180 1-piece collar shirt, tie, shorts.

For previous editions of these patterns, Palmer-Pletsch claimed their unisex camp shirt and banded collar shirt patterns took 2 or 3 hours. They’re now less optimistic !
Butterick 6846 1-piece collar camp shirt. Some stores still have this as McCall’s 6932. 3 hours.
Butterick 6841 band collar shirt, no timing. Formerly McCall’s 6613.

Skirts and Pants

In 2022 all the timed patterns have disappeared, except for this one :
New Look 6843 skirts with zip.

There are of course multiple easy patterns which are not timed, see the posts on elastic waist skirts and elastic waist pants.

Layers

Again in 2022 only one of these remains :
McCall’s 6209 ponchos.

Butterick used to have a quick pattern for waterfall front jackets, Butterick 4989, which is now out of print.

And they had an unlined blazer pattern that Butterick claimed you could sew in 2 hours ! 😀 Look for Butterick 4138 dated 2004.

McCall’s 6172, the famous Palmer-Pletsch 8-hour lined blazer pattern which sold over a million copies, is now out of print.
The more recent McCall’s PP pattern for a blazer, a ‘boyfriend’ style unisex design, is also oop.
The latest incarnation of the PP blazer, for those of us who are not inverted-triangle shape, Butterick 6862 with angled lapels and single-welt pockets, says it is an Advanced sew and has no timing guidance.
There are now many (untimed) blazer patterns at a wide range of difficulty levels, see list of the top 14 blazer patterns at Pattern Review.

Costumes for men and women

Neither of these is still in print :
McCall’s 7229 : nativity.
McCall’s 6142 : clown.

– – –

Independent pattern companies

Again these are just a few patterns I’ve found which claim specific making times.
There are many more independent pattern companies mentioned in my other post on quick patterns : Very quick and easy patterns which are not timed.

For modern casuals, try Seamwork download patterns from Colette Patterns – supposed to take less than 3 hours in total (a few for men).

Seamingly Smitten claims most of their download patterns can be made in an afternoon.

The elegant simple classics designed by Loes Hinse and sold by Textile Studio Patterns are no longer available, but might be worth looking out for.
Shorten the skirts and dresses to transform the look. Or try the jackets at thigh, knee, or low calf length.

With a little more time – Decades of Style ‘Everyday’ patterns are supposed to be sewable in a day. Most are also rated ‘easy’.

Some individual patterns :

Christine Jonson Studio Collection draped vest and jacket download patterns for knits.
She says the vest can be sewn in 5 minutes !

While Threads magazine have a 30-minute instructions for a knit fabric shrug.

Fancy Tiger Crafts free pattern for a One Hour Top is a simple dolman shape knit top. They have a video class for it at Creative Bug showing how to make it on a serger/overlocker and a sewing machine.

And if you enjoy self-drafted patterns from a book there’s the 1920s One Hour dress by Mary Brooks Picken.

CNT Patterns have :
‘A little somethin’ 3 hour shawl collar jacket.
‘Start after breakfast finish before lunch’ jacket with raglan sleeves.

Sew Over It claim an Intermediate sewer can sew their Ultimate Shift dress in 3 hours.
Sewlidarity says she made 2 pairs of Sew Over It Ultimate Pyjama pants in 5 hours (vlog starts at 1.50).

These making times from Elizabeth Suzann claim to include cutting time:
1.5 hours :
Georgia boxy top.
2.5 hours :
Harper tunic with unusual armhole openings or sleeve option, plus big pocket option.
Florence pant, basic elastic waist, wide legs, no pockets.
3 hours :
Clyde work pants have big hip pockets.
4 hours :
Clyde jumpsuit, sleeveless, no waist seam, big hip pockets.

– – –

Looking at all these possibilities, you ‘should’ be able to find patterns for a ‘core 4’ of top, skirt, pants, jacket, plus a dress, which you can make up in a holiday weekend 😀 Perhaps do the cutting out the weekend before !
Nancy Nix-Rice suggests you make your starter Core 4 all out of the same fabric. Kate Matthews even suggests you can get them all out of 6 yards. Personally I would not be comfortable with wearing all my clothes in the same fabric, and no amount of added scarves and jewellery could persuade me otherwise ! Well perhaps it’s having the top in the same fabric which would cause me style problems. I might find it possible – though boring – with what used to be called a ‘costume’, an outfit consisting of dress and jacket. I might happily wear a Core 4 in which the items were in different shades and values of the same main colour, and in different textures. What would be your preference 😀

Of course you may well have your own patterns which you can whip up in a short time. I’ve just been talking about patterns which the pattern companies are willing to make a commitment about. They show that everyone can make a garment quickly, not just people who have a serger/overlocker and are making a tee 😀

Incidentally you may have wondered why there are so few knit patterns in this post. There are many knit patterns in the next post, on quick but not timed patterns : Very quick and easy patterns which are not timed. Perhaps there are so many techniques / tools / notions for making knit garments, the pattern companies don’t want to guess the time you might need.

Whether you enjoy using these fast patterns may depend on your sewing style. I’m not a quick sewer, and I don’t do well under pressure. I need to spend time developing the fit of a pattern and getting secure about the techniques used before I can be sure of making it more quickly.
But there are many people who love to jump straight in for a quick reward to their sewing.

So Good Luck with developing a range of speedy Tried ’N True patterns, if that’s what you enjoy.

– – –

Patterns and links available July 2022. First version written in 2010.

= = =

Sew a garment in less than 3 hours ? – 2019 patterns

March 2, 2019

These are patterns which the pattern companies claim you can sew in 3 hours or less.

These times assume you’re an experienced sewer ! And they usually only mean time at the machine, and don’t include preparation and cutting out time. Also they use quick techniques which may not give the best quality result – from looking at some of these instructions, they may not include seam finishing and pressing time. . .
But still these times are reasonable, they’re not stressed-sewing. They’re much easier than the patterns that Great British Sewing Bee contestants are expected to make in 3-1/2 hours.

These are the timed patterns I’ve found in print in March 2019.
Speedy patterns are mostly basics which stay in the catalogues, but there are a few new ones since I last wrote on this (2016), and a few have disappeared.

There are 100s of patterns in general for men, see this post. But there are very few speedy patterns for men.

In 2016 I also wrote a post on patterns that are quick makes but the companies don’t claim specific times for : Very quick and easy patterns which are not timed (I have not checked that for still-valid links.)

Obviously these patterns have to avoid any technique that takes time. So they have few design features and little shaping. But there are designers who provide interesting shapes and design elements that don’t need much work.

Very few of these patterns include pockets.
Add a patch pocket taken from another pattern. Or see this pinterest board for patch pocket design ideas.
Or here are instructions and pattern piece for in-seam pockets, from Sew Over It patterns (easy), or Christine Jonson patterns (scroll down, more complex).

And allow for the sewing techniques you’re relaxed about. Most quick patterns avoid zips, buttonholes, collars, set-in sleeves, any hand sewing. But if you’re a sewist who can do those in a whizz, then why not.

Fabric choice can be crucial.
Quality fabrics can give a luxury look to even the simplest of styles.
For easy making : choose wovens with a bit of body, so they don’t need much support from interfacing and don’t change shape while you’re cutting and sewing them. Not slippery, don’t fray easily. Similarly with knits – choose stable ones, that aren’t too floppy. Knits have the advantage they don’t fray, so no need for seam finishing.

– – –

BIG 4 PATTERNS

These are the Big 4 time-limited patterns available in March 2019.

Outfit pattern

4 hours for a 2-piece outfit, 6 hours for 3 pieces ? Well, perhaps double that to include preparation and cutting out time.

Simplicity 1563, knit tee and tank, woven elastic-waist pants/shorts and kimono/robe – unisex casual wear, nightwear.

For a quick capsule, make all those items at several lengths in casual and dressy fabrics (tee and tank dresses, shorts, capris. . .). Perhaps add a dressier top and a skirt from the patterns below.

Tops, Dresses

Surprise – the pattern above has the only timed knit fabric tops. Of course many people find knit tops a quick make, but the pattern companies don’t label the patterns with times.

All the patterns here are for woven fabrics. All have bust darts and no waist seam, unless mentioned.
The dress patterns can be shortened to tops and tunics, or vice versa.

New Look 6483, sleeveless and short sleeved tops.

New Look 6892, peasant style tops with gathers.

New Look 6347, sleeveless dresses.

McCall’s 5893, sleeveless and short sleeved empire waist dresses.

New Look 6352, sleeveless and short sleeved dresses, no bust darts.

McCall’s 6465, sleeveless and short sleeved dresses.

New Look 6889, sleeveless and short sleeved dresses.

McCall’s 6558, peasant style tops and dresses, gathers at shoulder and waist.

McCall’s 6098, girl’s dresses, no darts.

printed for you, USA only, very expensive :
Simplicity EA591701, jumper dresses, no bust darts.

Shirts, also for men :

Simplicity 8180 1-piece collar shirt, tie.

In previous editions of their unisex shirt patterns, Palmer-Pletsch claimed their camp shirt and banded collar shirt patterns took 2 or 3 hours. They’re now not so optimistic !
McCall’s 6932, 1-piece collar camp shirt (Palmer-Pletsch say 3 hours on their web-site, McCall’s don’t).
McCall’s 6613, band collar shirt (no time now given).
Lengthen for a shirt-dress.

Skirts and Pants
for women

There’s no longer a timed commercial pattern for the basic ‘sew 2 rectangles together with an elastic waist casing’ skirt, but there are several in the other post about quick patterns. The Hassle free make your own clothes book says you can make one in 10 minutes 😀

These patterns have elastic or knit band waist unless mentioned.

Simplicity 6338, girl’s skirts, knits and woven.

New Look 6053 2-hour skirts with darts and zip.

New Look 6843, 1-hour skirts with darts and zip.

printed for you, USA only, very expensive :
Simplicity EA701501, skirts.

Butterick 5153, shorts and pants.

Pants for men :

All have elastic waist, no pockets.

Butterick 5153, casual shorts and pants, no fly opening.

Simplicity 1563, casual shorts and pants, no fly opening.

Simplicity 8180 shorts, fly opening with snap closure.

printed for you, USA only, very expensive :
Simplicity EA995801, boxer shorts, fly opening with snap closure.

Layers
for women

Except for the blazers, none of these have any shaping darts.

Pullover layers :
Try New Look 6892 View A,B
1 size larger for 2″/5 cm more ease, 2 sizes larger for 4″/10cm more ease.

Layers with front opening :

A camp shirt is classic casual layering : try McCall’s 6932. Check the finished garment sizes and make larger if you prefer.

Simplicity 8219, lined vests.

McCall’s 6209, ponchos.

Simplicity 1563, kimono, perhaps shorten for a jacket.

Butterick used to have a quick pattern for waterfall front jackets, Butterick 4989, now out of print.
And Butterick 4138 was an unlined blazer pattern they claimed you could sew in 2 hours ! That is also oop, but it’s interesting to know someone thought it’s possible 😀

McCall’s 6172, the latest version of the famous Palmer-Pletsch 8-hour lined blazer pattern which sold over a million copies, is sadly out of print.
This has been replaced at McCall’s by a unisex blazer pattern, McCall’s 7818.
Palmer-Pletsch claim this is an 8 hour pattern, McCall’s don’t !
Palmer-Pletsch say this has ‘boyfriend’ styling for women. Roomy and straight with shoulders wider than hips, so best for wide-shoulder inverted triangle, rectangle body shapes.
McCall’s 6172 blazer was for women only and had more shaping and closer fit. Probably better for full busted inverted triangle, hourglass, triangle body shapes.

There are many other quick jacket patterns. Some of them are on this pinterest board. But very few jacket patterns are given specific sewing times, which is the focus of this post.

Layers for men :
All mentioned before.
camp shirts : Simplicity 8180, McCall’s 6932.
kimono robe : Simplicity 1563.
blazer : McCall’s 7818.

Costumes for men and women

McCall’s 7229, nativity, adult.

McCall’s 7228, nativity, children.

McCall’s 6142, clown.

– – –

INDEPENDENT PATTERNS

These are just a few patterns I’ve found which claim specific making times. I’ve looked at very few of them, so give no guarantees !
There are many more independent pattern companies mentioned in my other post on quick patterns : Very quick and easy patterns which are not timed.

Pattern lines and wardrobe books :

For modern casuals, try Seamwork magazine download patterns from Colette Patterns. Early patterns were said to take less than 3 hours in total (a few for men), they now cover a wider range of times but still mostly simple.

Seamingly Smitten claims most of their download patterns can be made in an afternoon.

The wardrobe planning and pattern book Dressed from Deer & Doe patterns has 9 downloadable pdf patterns claimed to be makable in an afternoon.

Tilly and the Buttons has a pattern book “Make It Simple” of clothes said to be makable in an afternoon. Site has photos of styles included, mainly knits. Traceable overlapping full size patterns included, or download pdfs if you prefer.

‘Made in a day’ :

With a little more time – Decades of Style ‘Everyday’ patterns are supposed to be sewable in a day. Most are also rated ‘easy’.

If you love making your own patterns there are several simple tops and bottoms, many of them knits, among the Sure Fit Designs Made in a Day styles. Most of these can be made starting from any basic top and pants fitting slopers, not just the SFD ones.

Individual patterns (only the first is for men) :

For a very quick unisex fleece jacket/coat, watch Shirley Adams show how to make a jacket without a pattern and only 2 seams – in her Bog coat video. She claims 10 minutes. Take a little more time and add strips to the front opening if you want it to close.

These free download patterns from Camelot Fabrics are said to take an afternoon :
boxy dress – for variations : shorten to top / tunic, change neckline shape or finish.
cropped jacket – for variations : lengthen, change front shape.
pyjama pants – with elastic waist and side seams. Make a size smaller for a daywear version ?

Christine Jonson Studio Collection draped vest and jacket download patterns for knits. She says the vest can be sewn in 5 minutes !

CNT patterns : ‘A little somethin’ 3 hour shawl collar jacket.

Fancy Tiger Crafts free pattern for a One Hour Top is a simple dolman shape knit top. They have a video class for it at Creative Bug, with download pattern and showing how to make it on a serger/overlocker and a sewing machine.

If you enjoy self-drafted patterns from a book there’s the 1920s One Hour dress by Mary Brooks Picken.

Sew Over It claims an Intermediate sewer can sew their Ultimate Shift dress paper / download pattern in 3 hours.

Silhouette patterns :
600 classic blouse, with 1-hour sew-along webcasts.
85 sweater wrap, basically a knit circle with added sleeves.

– – –

Of course you may well have your own patterns which you can whip up in a short time. This post is about patterns the pattern companies are willing to make a time commitment on. They show that everyone can make a garment quickly, not just people who have a serger/overlocker and are making a tee 😀

Surprisingly, there are few knit patterns in this post, though there are many in the related post : Very quick and easy patterns which are not timed. Perhaps there are so many techniques / tools / notions for making knit garments, the pattern companies don’t want to guess the time you might need.

Whether you enjoy using these fast patterns may depend on your sewing style.
I prefer slow sewing and quality, and I don’t do well under pressure. I need to develop the fit of a pattern and get secure about the techniques used before I’m relaxed about making it more quickly.
But there are many people who love to jump straight in for a quick reward to their sewing.

So Good Luck with developing a range of speedy Tried ’N True patterns, if that’s what you enjoy.

– – –

First written March 2019, links checked August 2020

= = = = =

Speedy Patterns – to sew in 3 hours or less – 2016

November 19, 2016

The 2022 version of this post, with links that work! is here.

These are patterns which the pattern companies claim you can sew in 3 hours or less. Mainly a list of all the timed patterns I found in print in November 2016. Since then I’ve been adding individual patterns when I’ve come across them.
These times assume you’re an experienced sewer !
And they usually only mean sewing time, not including preparation and cutting time.

(2022) Sadly both Simplicity/New Look and Butterick/ McCall’s/ Vogue have completely changed their sites since this was written 6 years ago. I’ve updated some of the links but, sorry, a few of the links are unchanged.

I’ve posted several times on the topic of quick-make patterns, starting in 2010. My last post (March 2016) has now expanded so much it was getting unwieldy. So I’ve divided it in two :
– this post, on patterns the companies claim a sewing time for,
– a second post on patterns that are also very quick and easy, though no one makes any claims about how long you’ll need : Very quick and easy patterns which are not timed.

Obviously these patterns have to avoid any technique that takes time. So they’re very simple, with few added design features and little shaping. But there are designers who manage to respond to this need by providing interesting shapes and design features that don’t need much work.

It’s also helpful to know which sewing techniques you’re relaxed about. For example, most quick patterns avoid zips and buttonholes, collars and set-in sleeves, any hand sewing. But if you’re a sewist who can do those in a whizz, then why not.

Fabric choice can be crucial. Quality fabrics can give a luxury look to even the simplest of styles (see Eileen Fisher for examples). Choose wovens with a bit of body, so they don’t need much support from interfacing and don’t change shape while you’re sewing them. Not slippery, don’t fray easily. This is not the time to be trying viscose or thin silks. Similarly with knits – choose stable ones, that aren’t too floppy. Knits have the advantage they don’t fray, so no need for seam finishing. And there are non-knit fabrics like this too.

– – –

Big 4 timed patterns

These are the Big 4 time-limited patterns available in November 2016.
Most Simplicity-New Look patterns have a download option.

New Look 6816 capsule of knit top, skirt, pants.

Tops, Dresses, Shirts

The links in this section are correct in mid-2022.

All the dress patterns can be shortened to tops and tunics.

New Look 6483 sleeveless and sleeved woven tops.

New Look 6892 peasant style tops.

McCall’s 6558 peasant style tops and dresses.

New Look 6347 sleeveless dresses.

New Look 6889 sleeveless and short sleeved dresses.

New Look 6352 sleeveless and short sleeved dresses.

McCall’s 5893 sleeveless and short sleeved empire waist dresses, knits.

McCall’s 6465 sleeveless and sleeved dresses.

Also for men :

Simplicity 8180 1-piece collar shirt, tie, shorts.

For previous editions of these patterns, Palmer-Pletsch claimed their unisex camp shirt and banded collar shirt patterns took 2 or 3 hours. They’re now not so optimistic !
Butterick 6846 1-piece collar camp shirt. Some stores still have this as McCall’s 6932.
Butterick 6841 band collar shirt. Formerly McCall’s 6613.

Skirts and Pants

In 2022 all the timed patterns have disappeared, except for this one :
New Look 6843 skirts with zip.

There are of course multiple easy patterns which are not timed, see the posts on elastic waist skirts and elastic waist pants.

Layers

Again in 2022 only one of these remains :
McCall’s 6209 ponchos.

Butterick used to have a quick pattern for waterfall front jackets, Butterick 4989, which is now out of print.

And they had an unlined blazer pattern that Butterick claimed you could sew in 2 hours ! 😀 Look for Butterick 4138 dated 2004.

McCall’s 6172, the famous Palmer-Pletsch 8-hour lined blazer pattern which sold over a million copies, is now also out of print.
It might be worth hunting out if you want a more female shape.

The more recent boyfriend-shaped Melissa Watson designed blazer is still available from Palmer-Pletsch, McCall’s 7818.

Costumes for men and women

Neither of these is still in print :
McCall’s 7229 : nativity.
McCall’s 6142 : clown.

– – –

Independent pattern companies

Again these are just a few patterns I’ve found which claim specific making times.
There are many more independent pattern companies mentioned in my other post on quick patterns : Very quick and easy patterns which are not timed.

For modern casuals, try Seamwork download patterns from Colette Patterns – supposed to take less than 3 hours in total (a few for men).

Seamingly Smitten claims most of their download patterns can be made in an afternoon.

The elegant simple classics by Loes Hinse sold by Textile Studio Pattern, are no longer available, but might be worth looking out for.
Shorten the skirts and dresses to transform the look. Or try the jackets at thigh, knee, or low calf length.

With a little more time – Decades of Style ‘Everyday’ patterns are supposed to be sewable in a day. Most are also rated ‘easy’.

Some individual patterns :

Fancy Tiger Crafts free pattern for a One Hour Top is a simple dolman shape knit top. They have a video class for it at Creative Bug showing how to make it on a serger/overlocker and a sewing machine.

And if you enjoy self-drafted patterns from a book there’s the 1920s One Hour dress by Mary Brooks Picken.

Sew Over It claim an Intermediate sewer can sew their Ultimate Shift dress in 3 hours.

CNT Patterns have :
‘A little somethin’ 3 hour shawl collar jacket.
‘Start after breakfast finish before lunch’ jacket with raglan sleeves.

Christine Jonson Studio Collection draped vest and jacket download patterns for knits.
She says the vest can be sewn in 5 minutes !

These free download patterns from Camelot Fabrics are said to take an afternoon :
boxy dress – for variations : shorten to top / tunic, change neckline shape or finish.
cropped jacket – for variations : lengthen, change front shape.
pyjama pants – with elastic waist and side seams. Make a size smaller for a daywear version ?

Sewlidarity says she made 2 pairs of Sew Over It Ultimate Pyjamas (download) in 5 hours (vlog starts at 1.50).

– – –

Of course you may well have your own patterns which you can whip up in a short time. I’ve just been talking about patterns which the pattern companies are willing to make a commitment about. They show that everyone can make a garment quickly, not just people who have a serger/overlocker and are making a tee 😀

Incidentally you may have wondered why there are so few knit patterns in this post. There are many knit patterns in the next post, on quick but not timed patterns : Very quick and easy patterns which are not timed. Perhaps there are so many techniques / tools / notions for making knit garments, the pattern companies don’t want to guess the time you might need.

Whether you enjoy using these fast patterns may depend on your sewing style. I’m not a quick sewer, and I don’t do well under pressure. I need to spend time developing the fit of a pattern and getting secure about the techniques used before I can be sure of making it more quickly.
But there are many people who love to jump straight in for a quick reward to their sewing.

So Good Luck with developing a range of speedy Tried ’N True patterns, if that’s what you enjoy.

– – –

Patterns and links available November 2016

= = =

Very Quick and Easy patterns which are not timed

November 19, 2016

My previous post was on patterns which the pattern companies claim you can sew in 3 hours or less. The 2022 version of that post is here : Sew a garment in less than 3 hours.

The patterns in this post are obviously quick and simple, but the publishers are not committing themselves about how long you need to make them !
Few specific patterns mentioned here, instead there are many extensive pattern ranges to explore.

2022 – I have updated the links in the earlier version of this ‘not-timed patterns’ post.

The same comments about fabrics apply as in the other post :
Quality fabrics can give a luxury look to even the simplest of styles. Choose wovens with a bit of body, so they don’t need much support from interfacing and don’t change shape while you’re sewing them. Not slippery, doesn’t fray easily. Similarly with knits – choose stable ones, that aren’t too floppy. Knits have the advantage they don’t fray, so no need for seam finishing. And there are non-knit fabrics like this too.

Some of these patterns may use less than ideal sewing processes to speed up the make. You can always choose to take a bit longer on better techniques, though it may take some thought.

– – –

Some patterns for quick casual outfits

Some very simple patterns for skirts and pants :
elastic waist skirts.
elastic-waist pants.

For casual outfits, combine those with these free slouchy top download patterns from Tessuti :
Athina with cut-on sleeves, added length, straight sides (wovens)
Mandy boxy top with separate sleeves (knits)
Monroe top with turtleneck (knits, stretch fabrics)

Pattern companies and special pattern lines

Many of these suggestions are ‘easy’ pattern lines, on the assumption that means they would also be quick for an experienced sewist. The patterns may be easy, but you need to check if they would be quick for you.

There are many Burda Super Easy items (there doesn’t seem to be any way of getting a listing of just those patterns). Though do look at the patterns with care – there are patterns in that group which include darts, inseam pockets, zips. Burda envelope patterns do include seam allowances.

I find Burda Easy magazine is a more believable source of easy patterns. Here’s the Burda Style site. Scroll down the left menu to where individual issues of Burda Easy magazine are listed. Patterns from Burda magazines do need seam allowances added.

All the patterns from 100 Acts of Sewing are ultra simple. Her book includes 4 full size traceable patterns with instructions for many changes. And her Creative Bug video classes include download patterns.

See the ePatterns among the download patterns from Sewing Workshop. There’s a dress, jacket, vest, skirt, tee. Add elastic waist pants for a complete wardrobe.

I don’t sew knits myself so I’m not very aware of patterns for them, but I know many people like Pamela’s Patterns and find them quick to sew.

If you like a flouncy / lagenlook style, and have tried the pattern so you’ve found the pitfalls, a few of Tina Givens patterns use simple shapes and techniques, and most are downloads. Though ‘buyer beware’, you do need to know enough to correct any gaps in the patterns and instructions. If you like a softer look but don’t want to go completely lagenlook, many of these can be shortened to thigh length and worn with other skirts, pants or jeans.

If you don’t need good instructions, there are the ‘one figure’ styles from Hot Patterns, all downloads. Also most of the styleARC patterns suitable for beginners (though ignore their claims about fit, there’s no way the same pattern can fit well on both triangle and inverted-triangle body shapes).

And it’s worth searching for the gems among the dross in the free download patterns from fabric.com (adult patterns are from Hot Patterns).

Yet more simple tops and bottoms among the Sure Fit Designs Made in a Day styles. Most of these can be made starting from any basic top and pants fitting slopers, not just the SFD ones. Though you do need to do a bit of pattern work the first time you use them.

Quick and easy jackets are usually loose fitting with no collar. Maybe no closure, or use snaps, clasps, frogs, ties, cord loops instead of buttonholes. Often with cut-on sleeves. Or made from rectangles with square armholes. Sometimes raglan sleeves. There are patterns for these from many companies. Here’s my post from 2011 listing quick jackets from independent designers – most are still available.

MacPhee Workshop It’s Magic and World’s Easiest are ingenious simple casual patterns, though for my taste the techniques are sometimes over simplified. As they’re in Canada, there are many warm jackets and coats – not usual in quick pattern collections.
A couple of those are versions of the one-fabric-piece bog coat. Here’s Shirley Adams’ video about making a bog coat without a pattern.

I now have a pinterest board of patterns for very easy jackets and vests.

For a slight increase in skills and time needed, there’s a large range of Fast and Easy patterns from Butterick.

Very easy wardrobe patterns

Make your co-ordination decisions quick and easy by using a wardrobe pattern. The list is much shorter than it used to be but there are still many easy New Look patterns for 2 or 3 items, such as :

for knits :
New Look 6735 (‘core 4’ of jacket, top, skirt, pants),
New Look 6730,
New Look 6458,
New Look 6216.

for wovens :
New Look 6461,
New Look 6292.
This one isn’t labelled ‘easy’ (skirt and pants have darts and zips), but is nearly and has a ‘core 4’ of jacket, top, skirt, pants : New Look 6217.

Here are two more easy-sew suggestions for simple basic wardrobes, both with several length options and more possible :
Butterick 3039 – top/tunic/dress, skirt, pants, short sleeve shirt-jacket – cut on sleeves, buttons – body bust 36-54″.
Simplicity 4789 – jacket/vest, jumper dress, pants – fitted sleeve – body bust 32-50″.

Burda 7075 is another ‘core 4’ pattern. It is in their Super Easy range, but includes darts, zips, in-seam pockets, so the techniques used are definitely lower Intermediate.

My favourite easy wardrobe pattern used to be the 6-item Central Park pattern by Park Bench Patterns :
park bench wardrobe
Now if you search for it you’ll get much information about benches in parks, but the pieces are easy enough to copy.

‘Learn to Sew’ pattern ranges

If you’re an experienced sewist, then you’ll probably find these patterns easy to make.

Simplicity Learn to sew
McCall’s Learn to sew (avoid the camp shirt 6972, or add a neck facing so you can sew the collar quickly and easily).

Although these are ‘Learn to Sew’ patterns, many of them would be challenging as a first project for most complete beginners. But they do usually use simple techniques and clear instructions. I think the Simplicity instructions are better for beginners, but that won’t matter so much for an experienced sewist.

I’ve linked to pattern lines that I think are mostly genuinely ‘easy’. But this needs care – look carefully at the line diagrams of patterns labelled Easy or Beginner by many of the pattern companies, which may not be at all quick or even simple. Assess these patterns for whether they use techniques that are trouble free and quick for you.
I think the Very Easy Vogue label is especially mis-leading for beginners, these patterns often use techniques which would be called ‘intermediate’ by anyone else 😀

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Many good quick-sew options. But we do need to allow for our own way of working. People who often sew quickly will go “oh good, 1 hour. . . whizz. . .done”. Meanwhile I’m saying “hmm, I do need to make samples of that stitch on my new machine. . . hmm, I need to adapt that pattern for my x, y, z fitting issues. . . hmm, that style element may be quick to sew but often doesn’t look good on me, I’d better make a test garment. . .”. I can take months to make a 1-hour pattern 😀 I can’t happily sew quickly a pattern that’s new to me. If I want some quick sewing, it has to be a Tried ‘N True pattern, one on which all the testing and development work has already been done.

But the quick pattern choices are wide. These days the need for speed doesn’t restrict you to making very plain classics. Copy the well known designers (such as Eileen Fisher) who make very simple shapes in very special fabrics.

Good Luck with finding some speedy patterns which suit your clothing style and your sewing style. Then, if you want to, you can happily build a wardrobe with minimum effort 😀

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Patterns and links available July 2022

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