This is one of those posts that give Shallow Thoughts from Iowa its name! Shallow. Anyway, here are two little random tips:
One is, if you're going to trace off an old pattern (and never use the old patterns as is, they are too fragile), use bleached muslin instead of tracing paper. Much sturdier and it still folds up nice and small for storage. Doesn't slip around on the fabric as you are cutting out the pieces, either.
The other is, I may have found a migraine cocktail that works for me: One Imitrex, 800 mg ibuprofen and 3 cups of very strong coffee. Rest in a dark room 1 hour. Can I get a hallelujah?