| Sewing Patterns for the Modern Woman - Blog Post: How to Use Copy Shop Files

How to Use Copy Shop Files

By Allie

Allie is the co-founder of Indiesew and creator of all things pretty on the site. Follow Allie and receive other Indiesew updates by subscribing to the blog.

How to Use Copy Shop Files |
Happy Friday friends and happy Fashion Revolution Day! Today is a good day to sit down at your sewing machine and spend some quality time just making stuff. Today we have a great tutorial to help your sewing sessions become just a little bit easier. Today we’re showing you how to use copy shop files, so you can spend less time printing and taping, and more time sewing!
Let’s back up for the folks who have never heard of copy shop files. If you’ve been spending too much time printing and taping your sewing patterns together, you’re in luck! A copy shop file is an image of a pattern's pieces formatted on large paper. These files are typically printed at a store like Fedex Office or Staples, here in the US. 
At Indiesew, if a pattern includes a copy shop file it is included in the .zip file you download from our site. For patterns that offer them, these files are available free of charge with the pattern purchase.
Currently, 42 of the 126 sewing patterns in the Indiesew shop offer a copy shop format. And many more of our designers are adding this feature. Because we sew so many patterns here at Indiesew HQ, if a pattern has a copy shop format we always use that feature. It saves considerable time for just a few extra bucks.


Pattern Details

So you might be wondering, "Cool. But how do I know if an Indiesew pattern has a copy shop file?" There are a few ways. First, you can look at the “Pattern Details” tab on the product page to view that information. Here, I’m looking at the pattern details for the Hudson Pants. Notice the information contained in the black oval.
Verify that a copy shop version exists by checking the pattern details |

Advanced Search

But if you only want to purchase patterns that have a copy shop file, checking the pattern details for all 126 sewing patterns can get tedious. So, we’ve created a brand new Advanced Search feature! Indiesew’s Advanced Search allows you to narrow your pattern searches by designer, category, size, difficulty, recommended fabrics, and pattern format. To use the feature, click on the Advanced Search button under “Show All Patterns".
Find which patterns have copy shop files using the advanced search |
Then, navigate to the “Formats” tab and check the box for “Has Copy Shop Version”. Your search criteria will appear under “Your Advanced Search”. Once you’ve selected every criteria you wish to search on, click on “Search".
Click on "Has Copy Shop Version" in the Formats tab on the advanced search |
The only patterns that will now appear in the shop are ones that have copy shop versions. Once you choose and pattern and complete the purchase, the copy shop file will be available in the file you download from Indiesew.


How to Get Copy shop Files Printed

Once you have your copy shop file downloaded, you’ll want to save it to a USB drive. Open up the file and take at look at the "Document Properties" in your Adobe PDF software. To do this, click "File", then "Properties". A box will appear, showing you the dimensions of this file.
Get the dimensions of the copy shop file |
Large format printers at US copy shops can print files up to 36” wide, and any length. Large format printers that print on A0 in countries like Australia and the UK can print files up to 33.1” or 841 mm wide. Most designers will format their copy shop files so that they fit on both sizes of paper. At 28” wide, the Hudson Pants copy shop file will print well on US large format paper.
Now, find a local print shop that has a large format printer. You may want to call and get quotes, giving them the dimensions of your file. You should expect to pay anywhere from $8 to $15 to have one copy shop file printed, depending on how long the image is. I’ve had the best luck getting large format files printed at Fedex Office.
Now, bring your copy shop file (stored on a USB drive) into the store. Tell the associates that you’d like one copy of the file printed on the large format printer, in black and white (unless you prefer color), and at actual size. It’s important that they don’t scale the image. They’ll work their magic to get the image oriented correctly and then print it. At Fedex Office here in Boulder, this process usually takes no more than five minutes.
You’ll be handed a file that looks something like this:
The printed out copy shop file |
Before you leave, make sure the document scaling is correct by measuring the scaling box with a ruler. If it’s not printed to scale, kindly ask them to print another one at full scale.
Verify proper document scaling |
Pay for your copy shop file. Make sure to retrieve your USB drive. Once you get your printed copy shop file home you’re ready to start cutting out your fabric!


How to Store your Copy Shop Files

I trace my patterns, instead of cutting them straight from the paper pattern. So, I like to store my full-size copy shop versions rolled up. I’ve found that a wire laundry hamper is a great way to store them when not in use.
How to store copy shop files |
So there you have it! That's the complete breakdown on how to use copy shop files. If you have a favorite designer who doesn't offer copy shop files, let us know if the comments below!
Did you notice the new additions to the Indiesew shop? Make sure you’re following us on Pinterest to see all the latest pattern releases. Happy sewing!

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