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About six months ago I posted a tutorial on how to print and assemble PDF patterns as extra material for the Learn to Machine Sew course. Today I want to show you an easy little trick that is one of the things that I just love about PDF patterns: how to hide sizes that you don’t need!
If you’re working from a pattern with a lot of sizes, it’s easy to get confused by the many lines. And if you’re a size XS, chances are you’ll probably not need the XXL size. One of the pros of using PDF patterns is that, as long as the designer has designated each size to a separate layer, you can choose which sizes to display and print, and which ones to hide, making life a whole lot easier on you. And if you do at some point down the line need another size, you can always print it out again. So convenient! Let me show you how!
Open up your pattern PDF file with Adobe Reader (download it for free here) and move to a page with various sizes visible. Here I have my Wet Bag pattern (which will be available in my website’s shop’s grand opening, hopefully next week!) opened to pattern page 2 (PDF page 19).
This pattern only has three very different sizes, so it’s not particularly confusing to leave it as it is, but consider that garment patterns with eight different sizes can get pretty messy! You can see that there is a different type of dashed or dotted line for each size (as specified in the previous pattern page).
On the left side of the screen, you’ll see some icons. Click on the “layers” icon (the one that looks like one square on top of another) and a little window will pop out.
When you click on the condensed menu (on Cucicucicoo patterns it will say “Choose the size here!”), the various size levels will be displayed. There will be a little eye next to each one which indicates that that particular level is currently displayed.
Let’s say you don’t plan to sew Size S. Uncheck the little eye, and that size will disappear from the screen, leaving the ones that you do want! When I need to blend between sizes in garment sewing (because rarely do my children or I fit perfectly into one given size as it is), I leave the different sizes that correspond to my different measurements, unchecking the others, and that way it’s easier for me to see what I’m doing when I blend between them.
Or let’s say that you want to sew ONLY size S. Do the exact opposite, leaving only that size checked and unchecking all the others.
All that’s left to do is print out the pattern, just as you would with any other PDF pattern! In the print box above you can see that I’ve:
- selected ONLY the pattern pages to print (this particular pattern has instructions and pattern pieces in the same file)
- selected to print in grayscale (this is my own preference, and perhaps not the best choice if the pattern you are using has different colors for each size)
- selected to print at ACTUAL SIZE to avoid altering the pattern’s dimensions (you can also set the custom scale option at 100%, as I did here)
- verified in the print preview that only the sizes that I’ve left checked are indeed the only ones visualized.
Once you’ve printed the pages and checked the scale, proceed to assemble the pattern pages as you would normally, unless of course the instructions tell you to do in a particular way. If you need help with checking the scale and/or assembling the pattern, check out my tutorial on printing and assembling PDF patterns.
Wasn’t that super easy? And it makes life easier on your eyes! Happy sewing!
This lesson on how to hide sizes in PDF patterns is extra content of the beginner’s sewing course! And if you want to practice using PDF patterns, why not try out on my FREE Carry Everywhere Shopping Bag pattern?!