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DIY Pattern Weights - Tutorial

Uber-cheap pattern weights!  Want to make some?

C'mon then!

*Update!  Go here to see my finished weights!*

You'll need:
  • Fender Washers, like these.  (This is the size I used, but I got my 15 count package at my local hardware store for about $5 bucks)
  • Good Adhesive.  I use E-6000.  You can get this at most craft stores and hardware stores, or online.
  • Yarn, ribbon, or fabric strips of your choice.  I chose yarn for its 'sticking' ability to the Swedish Tracing Paper that I use.
  • Trusty glue gun.  Don't have one?  What are you waiting for?

A few notes:

I bought one package of 15 washers, and I made 5 pattern weights - 3 washers per weight.  I find them to be heavy enough for my purposes, but if you would like them a bit heavier, I'd buy two 15 count packages (or whatever) and have 5 washers per weight.  Make sense?  So if you bought two 15 count packages - 30 washers - 5 per weight - 6 weights.  Yeah?  Ok.

I also want to say that I'm sure there are other folks out there who have come up with this kind of idea; but in no way am I aiming to copy or steal from them.  This project was born in my head, and made by my hands.

And, lastly, 99% of these pictures were taken at night, so they ain't pretty.  They make my Lime Sorbet yarn look like Split Pea Soup yarn.  :/

Ok, let's go!

First, stack up your washers in groups - mine were 5 stacks of 3 washers.
Glue together two at a time, using your E-6000:

Glue washers together, two at a time

The glue tends to move them while setting.  If they get wonky or shifty, just right them and tell them what's what.

Glue on the top washer.  [or continue gluing one by one if stacking more than three]
Give them some time to settle.  I waited like, 15 minutes.

Now, get your trusty glue gun revved up.  

Heat up your glue gun!

If you haven't yet picked your yarn/ribbon/fabric, now's the time!

My choices.  I couldn't bear the thought of parting with my rainbow Bamboo, even though I SO don't knit.

Cut a length of your yarn or whathaveyou - long enough to cover a lot of the washer,  but not so long that it's difficult to work with.  I'd say my first piece was about 36".

Put a line of hot glue on one stack of glued washers.

Quickly lay your yarn onto the line of glue.

Let it set a moment or two, and then get to wrappin'!

If you're anything like me, you didn't wait long enough for the E-6000 to dry (craftshame on you), so you're working with shifty washers at this stage.  This glue is pretty excellent though, so when I say shifty, it's really not that bad.  They just will move, if pressured to.
Here's the solution to that:

<------Shifty                               Not Shifty----->
Wrap until you're out of yarn, pushing and manipulating the yarn so that no metal shows, and glue down the end

Cut another piece of yarn, however long you think you'll need.  You can always add more, or cut off excess.

Wrap until you have irreversible arthritis, and hot glue down your tail.  Trim excess.

You're done!

Now you just have to do that 4 or 5 more times!

Note in the last picture I've only got one done.  Truth is, I can't decide whether I want them all to be green, or if I want to spice it up and make a rainbow!

Also, an afterthought, perhaps a big needle would be helpful for this project.  It got harder and harder to fish that yarn out of the center!  Yeesh!

Do you like them?!  Are you going to make some?!  Link to them in the comments if you do, I'd love to see them!  

This is my very first tutorial, so it's surely not perfect - let me know if you have questions!  I'll also be adding a 'Tutorials' button to my Pages bar up top there, so check back for more fun to-do's!

Love to all!

[click here to see where this Tute is partying]


  1. Visiting from Hope Studios! I am bookmarking this project. We have a lot of ceiling fans in our house and when my kids are doing their homework, papers usually fly everywhere. These are a perfect fix for that. And after I do the gluing I am sure the kids would love to do the wrapping.

  2. Hi V! That's a great idea for these! What a fun family project!

    Thanks for checking them out!

  3. Fabulous idea! I was just trying to figure what I could do to make some cute pattern weights. I love this! I hope you'll come link up to my Sew Crafty Saturday Party this weekend!

  4. Thank you so much, April!
    I'll TOTALLY come link up!


  5. Not only do I love this idea, but I absolutely LOVE the way you "tutor". It was sooo easy to understand and somewhat comical at the same time. Thanks for helping me learn something new and smiling while doing so!

  6. Wow, what an amazing compliment! Set of compliments, really! Thank you SO much!

    You're very welcome and I'm glad you got a laugh out of it, too!

    :D :D :D

  7. OMG! Super fabulous idea! I am soo going to have to make some of these. Have you ever made a dress from that pattern you have shown in the pic?

  8. Thank you, Haley! They are SUPER easy to make! :D

    Funny you should ask about that dress... I was supposed to sew that puppy up for the Vintage Sew Along, but I lamed out and am going for a *slightly* easier project ;)
    (see this post )

    I WILL make that dress one day, though! Love it!

  9. Those are cute! And genius! Great job!
    You should come link this up to my weekly Thursday through Sunday Making It With Allie Link Party! I think it would make a Fabulous addition!

  10. Thank you SO much!! Will be linking up!


  11. LOVE this idea! I've made several pattern weights that were a flop and wanted something more personal than the ones you buy. Thanks so much!
    This is now bookmarked under my "to make" folder.

  12. Yay Ashley! I'm so glad!!
    Make some, make some! :D

  13. I'm still a super new sewer and haven't seen the use in using weights but I've also not made garments (just bean bags .)

    Great tute!

  14. Totally gonna do this -- after I raid my dad's workshop for some *free* washers ;) (he's a bit of a hardware pack-rat "hey, I might need those random zip ties one day" so he won't mind) Hehe I wanted to buy pattern weights, but this is so much cuter -- and will use up the yarn I bought so I could learn to *crochet* before I gave up on

  15. Yeah!! Just what I had in mind! I did buy some ribbon to wrap mine but yarn may have better "sticking" power to tissue-y paper...I am on the verge of starting ye ol blog back up. The big girl skater has shaken me in ways I can't explain. This is just another post crying for me to start back!!! Hmmmm...



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