July 12, 2013

DIY Pattern Weights

This post is brought to you by Michaels. // Earlier this week, I shared about 7 of my favorite time-saving sewing tips and tricks, which included at the number 1 spot the recommendation to use pattern weights instead of pins when cutting out sewing projects. These truly are a sewist’s best friend when it comes to saving time and energy throughout the cutting process!

DIY Pattern Weights

Today I am sharing how to make a set of pattern weights of your own using your favorite kicky fabrics. For the set featured in this post (as well as the coordinating bag I stitched up to keep them contained when not in use), I used some great new fabric now available at Michaels.

Wait–fabric from Michaels? Yes, you heard that right! Michaels recently started offering fabric in a variety of patterns, weights and textures for just about any project under the sun. Talk about convenient! For this project, I opted to use some of their cute canvas chevron, not only because of the eye-catching design, but also because the heavy weight of the fabric was just what I needed.

Fabric from Michaels Stores

Now, let’s get back to today’s quick and easy sewing project. Stitching up a set of these pattern weights can easily be done in an afternoon (or less!). Let me show you how it’s done.

For this project, you will need…

  • Heavy fabric (I recommend something like canvas, or even faux suede)
  • Coordinating thread
  • Washable ink marker
  • Metal BB’s* (found at sporting goods stores/departments)
  • Basic sewing supplies: machine, shears, etc.

*Why BB’s? Their small size but high weight make them perfect for creating pattern weights that are heavy but not bulky.

To start, cut (2) 3.5″ fabric squares for each pattern weight you wish you create. A good number to have on hand for a complete set is 6 finished weights, to I recommend cutting out 12 squares.

Place two squares together, right sides facing, and stitch around the outer edges of each with a 1/4″ seam allowance, leaving a 1″ opening at the center bottom of each. Snip the corners and turn the piece right side out.

DIY Pattern Weights

Use a washable ink marker to draw a 1″ square at the center of one side of the stitched piece. Stitch around this square.

DIY Pattern Weights

Carefully pour BB’s into the bottom opening, making sure they feed around all four sides of the opening. When the weight is filled around all four sides, carefully hand stitch the opening closed. Repeat the preceding steps to complete the remaining 5 weights.

All finished!

Your weights are now ready to use for any sewing project that suits your fancy.

DIY Pattern Weights

No more time-consuming pinning of paper patterns to the fabric underneath. Simply place the weights on top of the pattern and fabric to prevent shifting as you cut!

DIY Pattern Weights

I recommend stitching up a coordinating fabric drawstring bag to hold all of your weights when not in use. My Drawstring Fabric Gift Bag tutorial is perfect for this! I used that tutorial to create a medium-sized (9-inch) bag for storing my weights. Wouldn’t a set like this make a terrific gift for a sewist in your life?

DIY Pattern Weights

Thanks for stopping by!

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Michaels stores. All opinions are 100% my own.


Amy @ Positively Splendid

Amy @ Positively Splendid

Having grown up in a home brimming with sewing notions and paintbrushes, Amy has a deep love for all things creative. On any given day, you'll find her knee-deep in her latest creative endeavor, with projects ranging from sewing and crafts to home decor and kid-friendly ideas. Amy believes that everyone, regardless of skill level or experience, possesses the ability to create something beautiful, and Positively Splendid was born of her passion for helping others harness their innate creative potential.
Amy @ Positively Splendid
Amy @ Positively Splendid

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24 Responses to DIY Pattern Weights

  1. Marci @ STone Cottage Adventures July 12, 2013 at 4:37 am #

    ‘Great idea and simple, too! Thank you! -Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures

  2. Carlyn July 12, 2013 at 8:30 am #

    I’ve been using ribbon wrapped bolts from the big box store that I made, but love this idea. Thanks for sharing…Michaels here I come (love the Chevron fabric).

  3. Kathy E. July 12, 2013 at 8:44 am #

    Another simple and useful idea! I’m adding it onto my to-do list.
    Thank you, AmyQ

  4. Kathy E. July 12, 2013 at 8:53 am #

    Amy, it would be awesome to have a “pin it” icon on your posts to make it convenient for us pinterest folks!
    Could you add one?

    • Amy @ Positively Splendid July 12, 2013 at 9:37 pm #

      Hi, Kathy! When you hover over each photo in my posts, you will see a “Pin It” button in the top right-hand corner that you can click on and pin from there. I hope that helps! And thank you for wanting to pin my projects. 🙂

  5. Candy July 12, 2013 at 9:09 am #

    Love this idea, but could you please tell me what BB’s are exactly haven’t a clue here in OZ. Thank you.

    • Amy @ Positively Splendid July 12, 2013 at 1:00 pm #

      Hi, Candy! BB’s are actually small metal balls used as ammunition in a specific type of gun, called a BB gun. They contain no gun powder, so they are completely safe to use for this purpose.

      • Candy July 13, 2013 at 1:30 am #

        Haha thanks for the reply the ‘penny’ has now dropped, I’ll see if I can seek them out in Australia. Candy.

  6. Kara July 12, 2013 at 10:33 am #

    This is a great idea Amy! I love that you made a cute matching bag to store them in. 🙂

  7. Terry July 12, 2013 at 12:10 pm #

    These are really cute, and I’ve not thought of using BB’s before. And like Kara said above, I love the matching bag to store them in!

  8. Shelly July 12, 2013 at 12:15 pm #

    Love it! Such fun fabric too. 🙂 Yep had to Pin it! (I just use the Pin It button in my toolbar.)

  9. Marni @ Haberdashery Fun July 16, 2013 at 3:33 pm #

    Juut saw this on CraftGawker.. Really great idea!!! Love it!

    Marni @ HaberdasheryFun

  10. Marni @ Haberdashery Fun July 16, 2013 at 3:34 pm #

    Just saw this on CraftGawker.. Really great idea!!! Love it!

    Marni @ HaberdasheryFun

  11. Kari - UCreate July 17, 2013 at 7:34 pm #

    I need these like NOW!! Love the modern look of these, too!

    • Amy @ Positively Splendid July 20, 2013 at 9:20 am #

      Thank you, sweet Kari!

  12. Jann Newton July 18, 2013 at 2:30 pm #

    I love this idea! Definitely pinning. Great use of extra fabric scraps too.

  13. naomi July 28, 2013 at 7:17 pm #

    What would be a good alternative to BB’s? Im in Australia and as BB guns are completely illegal here I’m assuming the ammo for it wouldn’t be easily accessible or even legal.

    • Sarah February 1, 2014 at 8:33 am #

      Try metal nuts and fill in spaces with rice or sand, or just sand.

    • Candy February 6, 2014 at 9:59 pm #

      Yep Naomi I too scratched me head over the BB’s try looking up ‘split shot sinkers or weights’ used for fishing and can get really tiny ones too. 🙂

  14. Pam February 1, 2014 at 10:40 pm #

    A lady who worked at a local sewing store for over 40 years used large metal washers which you can paint or leave plain. I like the idea of fabric covering for color and design. Would still use the square covering and slide the washer into it. The non filled corners would be easy to pick them up by.

    • Amy @ Positively Splendid February 6, 2014 at 1:16 pm #

      Great idea, Pam!

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