5 Must Have Sewing Apps: No. 3

So you know what fabric you’re going to use and who you’re making for. What pattern will you use?

Full disclosure: I have no financial interest in the apps, nor do I know the developers. I am not being paid to review them. All apps are iOS. All opinions and biases are my own:)

Today, I’ll cover Sewing Patterns, by Claus Krogholm Pedersen, v1.3.9.

Sewing Patterns is for you if you:

  • are not sure while shopping what type of fabric to buy for a given pattern
  • can’t remember how much fabric to buy for the pattern or dress size you plan to make
  • want to filter your patterns by things like sizes, skill level, rating or recommended fabric type
  • see all of your patterns for one type of clothing such as dresses
Categories View

Features

Sewing Patterns enables you to

  • take a photo of your pattern front and back with all the guidance on sizes and fabric type and quantity recommendations
  • categorize the pattern by item of clothing such as blouse, shirt, pants, etc, for ease of finding
  • add pattern sizes, notions, skill level, rating and source
  • add a fabric to the pattern
  • sort and filter your database of patterns using things like skill level and category of clothing

Adding as many photos as you want means critical shopping criteria is with you in your phone.

Sewing Patterns: You can add as many photos as you want

And each pattern has detail fields that include source, skill level, size, notions, category of clothing and fabric.

Business Model: Freemium

The Lite version of the app is free for the first 10 patterns. You pay $3.99 for the full version of the app which allows you to:

  • Enter more than 10 patterns

Pros and Cons

Below are the pros and cons I found by using Sewing Patterns for clients and by comparing the app to Nielsen’s 10 Heuristics for User Interface Design.

Pros

  • You can add as many photos for each pattern as you’d like. Add a photo of the front, the size chart and the recommended fabrics section on the back so you know what type of fabric works best for the pattern and how much to buy when shopping. You can also add photos for inspiration, work-in-process and final product photos. (Recognition rather than recall)
  • This app has excellent help. Every term has a question mark nearby. If you click on the question mark, an explanation pops up. (Help and documentation)
  • If you start with the Lite version and later buy the paid version, your data transfers if Sync via iCloud in the app setting is on, saving data re-entry. (Error prevention)
  • The bottom bar has simple navigation in pictures and words (Recognition rather than recall)

Cons

  • It can be overwhelming to think about entering all of your patterns. It’s better to chunk it down and enter only the next pattern you plan to work on and build from there. If you use this strategy, you can get by with the free version for awhile as you make the next 10 things.
  • The same blue sewing machine icon is used for all categories of clothing. You can customize this icon but I’d rather start with an icon of the category so I don’t have to rely on the text description “blouse”. (Recognition rather than recall)
  • It’s hard to tell which version of the app you are in. (Match between system and real world)
  • The text elements on the category page spill over the category images.
  • There is no search bar.

Evaluations

My favorite feature of this app is the ability to take as many photos as you want and group them with a pattern. My favorite benefit is being able to go to the fabric store on-line or in-person, see a fabric I like, consult my pattern database and know exactly how much to buy for the size I plan to make without bringing the physical pattern with me. This saves me money, not to mention angst and regret when I buy too much or not enough.

If you’re going to keep a fabric inventory, my personal preference is Cora because there’s more data fields than in Sewing Pattern. In Sewing Patterns, instead I take a photo of the fabric I intend to use and add it to the pattern images rather than adding a fabric entry to save duplication of effort.

What’s Next

So far we’ve looked at apps that focus on a single function such as helping you track measurements, fabrics or patterns. Wouldn’t it be great if all that functionality was in one app? We’ll look at two all-in-one options for the last 2 posts.

Feedback, comments, questions welcome.

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