Freeneedle Blog

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17 Free DIY Dress Form Projects

Save money and make the perfect body form for your next sewing project!

There's no doubt that a dress form is a useful piece of equipment for dress makers. Indeed, for some sewing projects a dress form or mannequin is an absolute must. However dressmaker's dummies are not cheap - and making your own could be a great way to not only save money but also create your own uniquely shaped mannequin.

If this sounds a little daunting then don't worry! Help is at hand with these free tutorials and projects which have been shared by some clever and creative people. We have selected some fab photo tutorials to share with you, so you can clearly see every stage of the process. After all - you're not going to want to find yourself wrapped up in duct tape only to find that you've missed an important part of the process. You'll find our collection of dress form tutorials here - Make a DIY Dress Form.

All you require to make your own custom DIY dress form is some tape, a lot of time - and a very good friend. The latter being the most important.

Here is our selection of some of the very best DIY dress form projects and tutorials available - if you would like us to add some then just send us the link and we'll do the rest. Suggest A Page.

Wednesday, 20 March, 2013

What Makes a Great Free Sewing Pattern or Project?

We draw on our experience of many years of browsing free sewing patterns and tutorials and explore what makes the difference between an OK free sewing pattern or project and a truly great one!

In July we will be celebrating the sixth anniversary of FreeNeedle. Since we started, we’ve browsed and enjoyed literally thousands of free sewing patterns shared by talented and generous crafters and sewing fans around the world. They range from the mouth-wateringly awesome projects and tutorials that send us running for our needles and dusting off the pincushion, through to some that aren’t so great which have left us scratching our heads. The not-so-great tutorials are often lacking in detailed instructions or have failed to spark our interest with great pictures. The best free sewing patterns and tutorials that we see without a doubt feature great quality images as well as clear written instructions.

In addition to including great images and instructions, here are some other qualities that we see in some of the best free sewing patterns and the most popular projects and tutorials on FreeNeedle:
  • * Don't be afraid to really sell the features and benefits of your pattern or project. For example, if your project or tutorial is a quick make, uses just a yard of fabric or features some unusual stitches then shout about it! We notice that many successful free sewing patterns and projects feature a summary list which is easy for people to scan, outlining the features and benefits of a project.
  • * Don’t assume a level of knowledge of your reader – many of the best free sewing patterns and tutorials are written so they are accessible to beginners to sewing as well as those with more experience. While it is good to explain any special techniques which you may use in your projects, if you don’t want to cover the basics, don’t worry – instead why not provide links to sewing basics elsewhere? This will help your readers by giving them the information they require to complete your project without you having to reinvent the wheel. You'll find lots of learn to sew tutorials here at FreeNeedle which could be useful for your readers.
  • * Sewing pattern to print? – if you are offering a free printable sewing project then it is useful to give printing instructions. For example, some pdf sewing patterns should not be resized to fit a page, and it is useful for your readers for you to mention this before they start printing. By the way, if you fancy an interesting read about pdf sewing patterns, there’s a great blog post here with lots of insightful comments - A Serious Opinion About Pdf Sewing Patterns - A Fashionable Stitch Blog
  • * Special supplies – if there are some special or unusual supplies used in your sewing project or tutorial, let your readers know where to buy the supplies. Again, provide links to relevant stores (this could also be a good opportunity to monetize your pages with affiliate links if this is something that is of interest to you). This will help your readers ensure that they can buy all that is required to complete the sewing project.
  • * International audience – remember that your free sewing projects will be read by people all over the world! Therefore it is useful to include imperial and metric measurements. There are many websites that will convert yards to meters and meters to yards, for example this one - Metric-Conversions.org.

What Do You Think Makes a Great Free Sewing Pattern?

These are our observations – however, what do you think makes a great free sewing pattern? If you write projects and tutorials do you have any tips to share? Or if you are someone who loves browsing sewing patterns and tutorials what do you look for in a free sewing pattern? If you have a tip to share or some links to great free sewing patterns that you’d like to tell us about do get in touch!

Monday, 11 February, 2013

The Most Clicked Projects Last Week

It's the time of the week to see the most popular sewing patterns and projects last week

Interestingly, the top ten projects last week didn't change much from the week before, with the top spot again going to the Easy Dress Pattern.

Monday, 31 December, 2012

The Most Popular Projects Last Week

These are the sewing projects and patterns that were most viewed on Freeneedle in the week ending 23 December

The most popular sewing pattern among Freeneedle's users last week was the Easy Dress pattern that you can see in the photo here. The Audrey dress performed well again, perhaps unsurprising with it's classic design, and, being Christmas Eve today, can we expect the Christmas Eve Pajama Pants to perform especially well today.

Monday, 24 December, 2012

What Was Popular Last Week?

Here we have a quick look at the ten most popular sewing patterns last week

Here you can see what the readers of Freeneedle were most interested in the last week that ended 16 December. Women's clothes make up most of the top ten favorite sewing patterns with the refashioned smock dress well deserving of its position on the top of the pile. It really is a very dramatic restyling project.

Monday, 17 December, 2012

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