I have sewn on and off for years. Usually out of necessity at one time or another. I would see a pillow that I liked and convince myself that I could make that instead of paying the outrage price it was listed for. So, I would break out my handy dandy sewing machine and supplies and get to sewing. After I had accomplished that goal, my sewing machine would sit idle for another spell until the next inspiration and or challenge hit me.
Sewing from patterns always intimidated me so I would use the trace a garment I owned to make a blouse or pair of pants. I did very little garment sewing at all if any. But since I have thrown myself into sewing clothing for myself, I have learned so much.
One of my biggest issues with patterns is choosing the correct size. I would always end up with a finished garment that was 2 sizes almost to large. I would read the back of the pattern and choose a size that I thought corresponded with my measurements. But still, time after time, I would end up with a garment that was huge. Especially pants.
There is so much information on most patterns, and I would just get frustrated pick what I thought would be the closest to my size, and pray it turned out ok.
Mimi Godwin has a post on her blog and after reading it a light bulb went off in my head and I was like ah ha. Her tip on using a garment that already fit you well was like magic to my reading eye. Here is the post: Using What You Have to Make Patterns Work!
Then I found this wonderful link: Dealing with Pattern Ease on Gertie's New Blog for Better Sewing from May 2012.
My next biggest issue is lining a garment. I never line anything and its only out of fear. I have practiced but I don't feel comfortable. I have come across several articles and tutorials with great pictures but I still get stumped when a zipper is involved. Any advice anyone has to share, I am all eyes, and ears.