What you will need is a flexible tape measure, these are usually 60" long and made of vinyl, plastic, or fabric. To measure the hips, hold the tape measure horizontally and bring it around the fullest part of the hip area. This is your hip measurement. To measure the waist, find the natural indentation of your waist and measure around.
To do this, you will need some fabric to trace the pattern onto, such as, muslin or broadcloth. Lay pattern flat on top of your new pattern material, trace the pattern design onto your material. Tracing can be done with tailor's chalk, fabric marker, black template pencil, etc.
Lay pattern aside, and observe your new "fabric pattern." Determine what you want to change about the pattern. Let's say that you would like to change the skirt's size of the waist to make it ½" bigger, for example. Grab a straight edge and your tracing utensil and add ½" plus 1" to equal 1 ½". The 1" is for ½" seam allowance on both sides of the skirt.
Draw a new line parallel to the side of the pattern next to the waist. Cut out new pattern and try it out.
Your sewing machine manual will give you the best advice for your specific sewing machine; however, these are some general tips on how to maintenance your machine.
Depending on how often you sew, your sewing machine will need maintenance from a professional sewing mechanic. Most sewers will need this done about once a year.
Here are some handy tips on how to setup and keep organized in a creative and productive workspace.
Set your sewing machine on a sturdy table that is at a comfortable arm's length of working. (Sewing on a folding table will make your machine jump around as you sew.)
It's possible to reuse leftover fabric scraps or old projects. Let's say that you change your mind or make countless mistakes on some fabric, don't pitch it! Simply reuse and save for another project. It's helpful to have a large storage bin that you can toss your fabric scraps into. You can later use these for other projects. Don't save every little piece of fabric, just those that are big enough to reuse. You may want to set a personal guidline for keeping scraps ... especially if you are an enthusiastic seamstress! A good standard might be to save scraps that are larger than 5" x 5".