It’s nearly Halloween and this year, you’re going all out. You’re not going to buy some store-bought costume or throw one together from whatever’s in your closet. This year, you’ll have the costume of your dreams—and you’re going to sew it yourself.

#### Patterns and Pieces

Before you start sewing, you’ll need to make sure you understand fractions. After you buy your pattern, check the back. It will tell you how many yards (and fractions of yards) of fabric you’ll need for your project. In order to size your pattern accurately, you will need to take your own measurements to \begin{align*}\frac{1}{2}\end{align*} or \begin{align*}\frac{1}{4}\end{align*} of an inch. Pay special attention to **seam allowances**. This is a number (often \begin{align*}\frac{1}{4}\end{align*} inches) that tells you how much fabric will end up inside a seam. If you make your seams too big or too small, your costume may not fit. Once you start sewing, you’ll need to follow the directions carefully. If you make a mistake, be prepared to rip out a seam and redo your work.

Once you’ve finished your first costume, you can go on to more elaborate projects. With some planning, you can create new additions to your closet, anything from a trendy blazer to a handmade prom outfit. Just measure carefully and work attentively, and the world of fashion will be yours to explore.

See for yourself: http://teensew.blogspot.com/

#### Explore More

Watch the first video below to learn how to read sewing patterns. Then check out the next two links to find out how to make your own pair of pajama pants and more.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=koDdlAwJlKg

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dnzxo4ZO8b8