Are you okay if people try to eyeball it from the video if it's for like their personal project / not to sell or make a lot of or if they're trying to learn how to make their own patterns?
Generally, no. That might seem harsh, but again, this is my job. If every person who is making a personal project decides not to buy my patterns and just rip them off by looking at the tutorial video, it represents a huge loss of business for me. So I’d really, REALLY prefer if people just spend the $5-$9 and buy the pattern. They’ll get a 100% correct version of the pattern along with high quality photos and written instructions as well as knowing they are supporting an independent artist.
(( To go on a tangent, though you didn’t mention this, I have had someone tell me “Well you make money when I watch your video so I don’t have to pay you again”. In the entire YEAR of 2016 I made an estimated $16.60 from video ads. Google adsense doesn’t even send you a check until you reach $100. At this rate I might get a payout in a few years. ))
As for watching my videos to learn pattern making, I do think there is some benefit to watching them if you are watching them and thinking critically about not only HOW the pattern contributes to the final shape, but also WHY I am choosing those shapes. In general, though, copying my how to videos isn’t going to teach you how to make a plush pattern because my videos aren’t meant to explain my patterning choices. It’s only teaching you how to copy my plush pattern.
For example here’s a generic 4 piece sphere pattern that I prefer to use:
Great! If you see me holding these shapes up in a video, you can pause, eyeball it, and you know how to make a sphere! Now you have a pattern to use every single time you need a spherical shape. This is where the person who is just copying my pattern from a video stops. This is the extent of what they’ve learned.
I like to say that pattern making is coming up with 2D solutions to a
This person has copied my solution, but they haven’t learned how to solve the problem. Jumping to an analogy, the person who copied my pattern is exactly
like someone who copies your answer in math class. They learned that
2+2=4. If the next problem is 1+3=? they wont be able to solve it.They might have the correct answer to this one problem, but they didn’t learn anything.
Now a person thinking critically and not just copying might stop and think about what these shapes are doing and why I am using them. They might realize that any combination of these football shapes will give you a sphere. Which is true! By varying the width, you can use anywhere from 3 to (theoretically) 100 little football shapes to get a sphere. Though I’d probably stop at 9 pieces.
Here’s an example of a 6 piece sphere pattern:
And if you are really thinking about it and you draw them out like this, you might start to see that the little football shapes don’t even have to be separate. You can combine them with darts on the bottom and top and make a sphere pattern with just 1 piece:
So by thinking critically about how and why I’ve selected my shapes, the person watching my videos to learn and not to copy has more options to work with. Using the math analogy, they now know that not only does 2+2=4, but also 1+3=4, and maybe even 1+1+1+1=4. Now give this person the problem 2^2=? and they wont know the answer because all they’ve learned is addition.
In other words, all they’ve learned is this one specific method of finding a solution to this one specific set of problems. They can make spheres from pointy football shapes.
But we don’t need to keep that football shape, here’s a sphere pattern that I like to call the telophase pattern (hello science nerds). You can use this to get seams like a baseball:
Even a pattern like this with just darts can make a sphere if you have enough darts and your fabric is stretchy enough. You can use this when you need a large area without seams. A good time to use this pattern is when you want an embroidered face:
Every single one of these will make a sphere and there’s even more combinations out there. You can use hexagons, you can use squares, you can use a big circle and gather it around the edges, you could use a spiral, and so on. There are literally hundreds of possibilities. And that’s just for spheres.
When people ask how to get started patterning, I always tell them to start by making things from other people’s patterns. Then I recommend making minor alterations to those patterns and seeing how that effects the final product. Then I recommend drafting your own patterns, starting from simple 2D shapes and moving on to more complex 3D shapes.
Back to how I said patterning was finding 2D solutions to 3D problems. By working with an existing pattern, you are memorizing a single solution to a single problem. By altering patterns, you are learning how to come up with your own unique solutions to a problem. When you learn how to make your own pattern, you’re learning how to find your own solutions while creating your own problems!
To wrap up my own super long explanation, copying is a really, really poor way to learn how to do anything. If you want to learn how to make patterns, by all means, you can start looking at my solutions to help you come up with your own. But do us both a favor and just buy the pattern. Like I said before, they’re $5-$9. That’s less than most people make in an hour for something that took me a week or more to create and years to learn HOW to create. If you can’t afford it, there are many free patterns available online, but please don’t rip off an independent artist just because it’s for personal or educational reasons.