I am back on the bandwagon with garment sewing after nearly a year avoiding it. So, for the first time, I need pattern weights!

What’s the point of pattern weights? Garment sewers rely on them to weigh down the pattern pieces, keeping them flat while you trace the pattern onto your fabric. It’s a more precise way to transfer your pattern than simply pinning the pattern to the fabric. And, of course, precision is imperative when you’re making a garment.

There are plenty of tutorials on the web about making your own pattern weights. This isn’t revolutionary. But I wanted some that match my sewing room, which is a lime-green-color. Maybe you want to customize your pattern weights to a color too! So, here’s The Nerdy Sewist’s take on DIY pattern weights.


Eight 1/2-inch washers – from the hardware store

Rick rack, in any color (I used so-called “baby” rick rack)

Glue gun

These washers are about $2 each for a pack of 4. The rick rack cost less than $3. With these supplies, you can make pattern weights for less than $2 apiece — so it’s not just a deal, they will be personalized to match your sewing room!

Pair two washers together and begin to wrap the rick rack around them, with a 2-inch tail.

Continue to wrap the rick rack around your pair of washers, tucking the tail under your wrapping as you go. The rick rack can be overlapping, or it can be splayed out, so you can see the silver below. It’s just a matter of what look you prefer.

When you’re finished wrapping the washers, use a dab of glue from your hot glue gun to attach the other end of the rick rack to the washer. Do the same with the remaining 6 washers.

And now you have pattern weights that are customized by you!

I used my new pattern weights to cut fabric for my very first top, one with sleeves! Rest assured, you’ll see the final product from the shirt soon.

~ Kristina