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How I store my PDF patterns

Something I have learned from the sewing community is: you either love or hate PDF patterns. I am in the love camp (much more fun than hating!) and my PDF printouts were taking over the flat – seriously – so I have come up with an efficient, time and room saving way of storing them. Call it the admin in me.

Initially they were all over the place: the floor, tables, walls you name it and it drove me crazy, let alone the people around me.

Then I decided to store them in brown envelopes with a sticker on them to show what they were. This worked for a short time but a) I lost interest in that and b) the paper envelopes torn and it looked really bad.

So while browsing the supermarket stationery department I came across pretty plastic wallets and decided they were the way forward. Plastic would be harder to break and these had a popper on too to keep them closed; perfect for PDFs with big patterns inside of them.

I also purchased some magazine holders to put the wallets into and now they sit snuggly on my shelf – and look pretty to boot.

I also printed off stickers to put on the wallets and secured with cellotape so that it is easy to find what I am looking for. I also store patterns I’ve traced off in with these too.

The cost of doing this?

The wallets cost £1.50 for 3, the magazine holders are £4 each, stickers I already owned and cellotape I bought especially to cover all of the sticker £3. So depending on how many PDFs you own this way of doing things could either be cheap or expensive.

Do you use PDFs?

If so, how do you store yours? Leave a comment and let me know.

Thanks for reading,


  1. Yours all look so neat and tidy! I store mine in plastic wallets that I then keep in big ringbinders. It doesn’t look pretty, but it does the job. It works really well with little people patterns, but once I start trying to fold reams of paper for big people patterns, it’s not so easy as the wallets just bulge. Plus, I got lazy, and stopped marking up the wallets, so now it’s a case of scrolling through them all to find a particular pattern. I must get more organised again!

  2. Love This – absolutely love! Which supermarket did you find the wallets in? I need to organise my PDFs from usb stick to paper!

  3. Mine are in brown envelopes but yours look so much prettier. I hide mine in the loft, though, except for the next few I’m planning on making which live in one of those IKEA wooden magazine files on top of my sewing cupboard.

  4. This is going to change my life. Tomorrow’s task is now to source similarly pretty pockets to emulate your system!

  5. Sue Sue

    I love your ideas! This pattern organizational tip is certainly one I’m going to try. Thanks for sharing.

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