What is a Pattern Weight?

And Why Can't I Just Use a Can of Soup?

by Beth Cooper

Hey, new sewists!  (And all of you experienced sewists, too!) Do you know what is super helpful when you’re sewing garments and projects with a paper pattern?  Pattern weights!  These are something that are so simple, yet so necessary. 

What is a Pattern Weight?

A pattern weight is simply something heavy that holds down your pattern paper while you trace it or cut around it.  You can use anything to do this.  Got a book nearby?  That will work.  Got a can of soup?  That will work too.  So, why do you need to buy pattern weights then? 

This pattern weight looks like a watermelon and doubles as a pin cushion.
This pattern weight doubles as a pincushion. Find it here.

Why Buy Weights?

Pattern weights are made specifically for the purpose of holding down your pattern paper but not getting in your way.  That can of soup?  It stands tall enough that the top of it most likely will be in your way when reaching over it.  That book?  It’s probably so big that you will have to reposition it a time or two as you work your way around the pattern’s edge. 

A pattern weight is typically small and flat but heavy enough to hold down your pattern paper.  Not to mention a lot prettier than that can of soup.  They make wonderful gifts, too.  If you’re a hard-to-buy-for person, add a set of pattern weights to your wish list. 

These wooden paper weights feature engraved sewing images.
These paper weights are absolutely adorable. They are available on Etsy from KUHLart. Find them here.
Pattern weights that look exactly like chocolate chip cookies!
These polymer pattern weights look exactly like chocolate chip cookies! Find them on Etsy from AmirahCreates. Click here.

The cool thing about pattern weights is that you can find them in any color, pattern, or design you can think of. Are you into Harry Potter? They make Harry Potter pattern weights. Maybe you love hand-painted ceramics? Or your crazy about donuts? Perhaps you love dachshunds. Yep. They even make pattern weights featuring dogs. When you jump down the rabbit hole of shopping for pattern weights, you will find so many pretty ones that you want them all! Plus, they’re so handy you won’t be going back to that can of soup!

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Stef
Stef
20 days ago

I thought this was going to be a pattern for the watermelon pattern weight in the photo.

Rita
Rita
17 days ago
Reply to  Stef

Hi, I thought the same thing 😔

Betts.
Betts.
13 days ago
Reply to  Rita

Same here.

Mea Cadwell
Mea Cadwell
20 days ago

I have a small old sad iron, about 5 inches long, that I glued felt to the bottom so it could be used as a weight for my quilting rulers.

Then I made a stuffed peacock – all the tail feathers come off, each feather is in 2 pieces so I have a total of 10. They are attached together and to the body of the peacock by rare earth magnets and are my pattern weights.

Betts.
Betts.
13 days ago
Reply to  Mea Cadwell

Clever !!

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