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doodlebears Doodlebears
Posts: 7,414

doodlebears Celebration Ambassador

I have decided to make patterns to sell, BUT how on earth do people get their patterns to look so neat? Is there a program that they use? If so please can someone point me in the right direction. It may be obvious to some of you how to get really neat looking pattern pieces but mine look to rough for me to think of selling them.

Thanks Jane.  bear_flower  bear_flower  bear_flower

sarahjane Brisbane
Posts: 2,951

Jane I'm not sure what others do but I cut out a template from card or plastic then trace around this with a fine tipped black marker (pen) then scan them into the computer and use photoshop to add all the writing. Sometimes it helps to photocopy them before you scan them but if you are careful with the tracing it seems to look ok.

Stellajella Wien
Posts: 1,399

Jane, I know what you meen, these computer designed patterns look very professional....and yet, or mabye BECAUSE of that I prefer them hand drawn, with handwritten notes on them:) 
That has a much more human feel to it, a much more teddy feel bear_grin 
How about printing them on colored paper, the kind of paper that is a wee bit thicker?

Gaby bear_flower

fredbear Fred-i-Bear
Posts: 2,243

The odd ones I have done, is to print them out on my pc- and you are a boffin with the pc- so do a cover page, piciture /patttern name/your details, then when you open it up, have the directions etc.inside. Back cover- here you can have the requirements.
In this way when a person picks up the pattern, it shows them the design, and at the back they see what is needed, without opening the pattern. Inside the packet you can enclose the actual design to be traced off. If you do include the fabric and other requirements these can be included inside the cover page.

Its the display that is very important. The pattern needs to be printed on good quality paper- perhaps something thick and with a nice backing. The bag you place it in should also fit snuggly- I was able to purchase some nice see thru bags in Taiwan- they halfway between plastic and paper with a self sealing tab and came in any size you wanted. Still trying to find someone in SA who makes these things.

I know that handwriting looks good and cute for bear patterns- but only if you have a good handwriting- otherwise I think the pc still is the professional way to go.

Oh for the pattern, I trace off the pattern pieces using a plastic template( same that quilters use) using a black felt tipped pen, onto plain paper,then scan that in. Once scanned in- I use my pc to mark the pattern pieces- dont trust my handwriting.


ArtHeart Kran-Beary's
Thunder Bay ON Canada
Posts: 318

I do all my patterns in Corel Draw 10.   Adobe Illustrator is another program that you can use for computer generated images.     I used AI for my first book. The second book and all the EbearZ class patterns are done with Draw, and I personally think that Draw is a little easier to learn...but not much.  Both programs have HUGE learning curves and both programs are very expensive.

The patterns are called Vector Drawings, which means they follow a mathamatical formula and can be resized without affecting the overall form or quality.  (As opposed to Rastor and pictures... which can lose color, quality and pixels when resized.)

If you want a computer generated image, without having to buy a program and learn it,  you might try consulting a graphic design company, or a student at a college in graphic design.   Prices will vary depending on the amount of work you give them to do.   

hope this helps you out.
nancy t

Daphne Back Road Bears
Laconia, NH USA
Posts: 6,568

I prefer them hand drawn, with handwritten notes on them:) 
That has a much more human feel to it, a much more teddy feel

I'm with Gabby. And I sell lots of my patterns and then get calls for MORE when they've bought all my published ones! I provide well written instructions and diagrams of the ladder stitch and a few other techniques. The outside cover and backing are neat and 'professional' looking (done on the computer) and the back cover provides a list of all the supplies necessary, level of dificulty, etc. My patterns are hand drawn (very smooth, carefully and clean looking) including markings and notations. Then I scan the pattern pages into my computer and print them that way so as not to loose any of the quality/proportions that photo copying can cause. I like the human, personal touch of neatly hand drawn patterns. And for me it's quicker and less expensive than buying and learning a drawing program!

Of course I'm not out to make pattern selling a large portion of my business. If you are then the computer generated patterns might be the more 'professional' way to go!

As with everything..... it's personal preference. But I'm glad you said what you said, Gaby! bear_flower

Mutz Mutz's Tootsz Bears & Buds
New Berlin, Wisconsin
Posts: 397

I use Adobe Phhoto Deluxe Office.  It came with my scanner. It is a fairly easy program to learn. I use it to clean up & do all the printing & arrows on my patterns.  It has an erase & draw feature on it so it is great for working on patterns.  Mine is at least 7 years old though (is now on my second computer) so I don't know if it is still available.

mickeyflip Sunshine Coast, QLD
Posts: 87

Hi Jane,

I realise this thread is pretty old now, but in case you happen to be still keeping an eye on it I thought I'd offer you my assistance!

What you're looking for is exactly as Nancy mentioned; vector drawings.  I'm a graphic designer by trade so I use that software all day every day, and would be happy to trace your hand drawn scans / digital photos for you for free bear_original  It's pretty quick and painless.  Vector, simply put, is a method of drawing that's based on a mathematical equation (not as complex as it sounds!).  This means it can be infinitely enlarged or reduced with no quality loss at all.  The software simply reduces the ratio in the equations - kind of like redrawing it for you every time you change the size.  Cool huh?

There is a free program that is not dissimilar to the industry standard software called Inkscape.  I haven't looked at it a whole lot but I've seen it used.  So if you want a free option, and the chance to learn a new skill, then that might be your best shot.

Otherwise just shoot me an email and I'll whip it up for you bear_original

Gantaeno Je Suis Lugly!
Posts: 1,065

I think you'd be able to get away with free software, if you had a scanner and a graphics tablet... I got mine as a bargain on Ebay, but as it's a Wacom it was still quite costly: you can get them pretty cheap nowadays. They let you draw with a pen instead of using a mouse: that way you could outline the scanned pencil drawings yourself. You can even trace around your pieces on the tablet, if it's big enough bear_original

Lisa q.D.paToOtieS
Near Fredericksburg, VA
Posts: 1,349

I did mine on Microsoft Draw, where I clean it up, add better borders and all the text.  Hope this helps!

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