Storing Printed PDF Patterns

I have a love-hate relationship with PDF patterns, which I’m sure many of you can relate to. Obviously, I love that they are a more affordable option and that they are, essentially, instant. The only thing is that, they are actually far from ‘instant’. Even though you do get the pattern straight to your inbox once you click ‘buy’, you still have to print them off, stick them together and then either cut them out or trace and then cut them out. One of my least favourite aspects of PDF patterns was definitely the sticking together part. Oh how I hated doing that. I can never, I repeat, NEVER, get them to line up. Honestly, I can’t be the only one?! The obvious answer is to get the A0/copy shop option printed out for you. However, I was never able to find an affordable option, and by the time I would pay for the printing, I would have been better off just buying the printed pattern in the first place!

Fortunately, I have recently found (via the lovely Amanda) a very affordable online printing company (Net Printer) who will print your A0 patterns for 75p per page! Amazing! The only ‘catch’, if you want to call it that, is the £3 delivery. So the best thing to do is get a number of patterns printed at the same time. Which is exactly what I did (and I can report, their customer service is excellent and delivery very fast).

I was then faced with the problem of where I was going to store all of these newly printed PDF patterns. To say I had been hoarding them on my computer would be an understatement!
If you caught my sewing room tour post from last week, you may have noticed the large grey boxes above my wall of drawers. I bought these in Ikea (like almost everything in that room!) more for their aesthetic rather than with specific storage solutions in mind.

But I happily discovered that they fit A4 plastic folders (or rather, folders which hold A4 paper, so they are slightly larger – I bought these) perfectly. And so my new PDF storage solution was born. It’s nothing revolutionary, but I find it very convenient and thought I’d share the idea with you, incase you may be wondering about PDF pattern storage yourself.

The A0 pages and traced patterns (which is how I now treat all of my patterns, unlike the above photo showing an earlier pattern which I cut out directly) are folded neatly and kept in a folder/wallet along with their instructions. If I was very organised I would have printed off attractive front covers for them, but I do not have the time, so scribbled titles will do just fine (see previous photo)!

I’d love to know, how do you store your printed PDF patterns?

As for my printed patterns, they fit very nicely into the top of my chest of drawers. I’ll be sharing my printed pattern stash in my vlog this week (it will go live on Thursday), so if you are interested in seeing a bit more of my above pattern stash then please do tune in to that.

And I’ll be back here on the blog on Thursday with a few of my favourite vintage patterns from my stash. See you then!

Reader Interactions


  1. Lynne says

    I'm a big fan of a PDF, but the sticking together is a bit trying! Thanks for the tip on the printing out, I might give it a go. It would definitely be worth it to get a few patterns done at once.

  2. Stevie says

    Good plan lovely and thanks for the tip about the printers! i'd been looking for an affordable alternative to printing and cutting. I like the plastic folder idea, I use plain manilla envelopes for mine which is cheap and works fine in my big Ikea boxes, but it isn't quite as sturdy as those!