A few weeks ago I was really delighted and pleasantly surprised when Christine of Sewing And The City reached out and invited me to be a partner with her sewing pattern company. For a couple of reasons I don’t actually use a lot of Indie patterns, I’ve got nothing against them per se but between my Vogue collection and a few years’ worth of Burda magazines, I have a LOT of patterns from my younger sewing days and I also I’m trying to develop my own designing and drafting skills. Therefore, I’ve been committed to using my pattern stash or developing my own.
However, when something like this happens you can’t turn it down. I was absolutely stoked and dived straight in to showcase one of her patterns. I chose the Bleeker top which is an oversized boxy sweatshirt with a twist. It has some lovely details in the form of large blousey sleeves with two tiers of frills. Statement sleeves are still a thing so I thought I had to give this a go.
With a nod to my on again off again pledge to work through my fabric stash, I decided to go with some of my electric blue stretch velour to complete this top. It may also be a hangover from my Glitz-fest leading up to Christmas. I paired it with a teal cupro (I think) which has been in my stash for three decades and I’m not joking. It’s something that as usual I bought only two metres of and then when I couldn’t think of what I should make with it, dumped it in the stash. Anyway, I’ve used a small amount of it to make these frills.
It should have been relatively easy to make but it seems like my two chosen fabrics didn’t agree with each other because when I was trying to install the ruffles they just slithered around against each other like crazy, so that became a bit of a mission. Once I conquered that, however, it came together really nicely. Funnily enough, the velour does not fight itself and I didn’t have too many problems sewing the other seams.
I’m going to take the opportunity to talk about Sewing and the City, I really enjoyed reading Christine’s bio – she’s a former New York fashionista and I think you can see that in the presentation of SATC. There is a good range of patterns which to me, look modern, simple yet with a sophistication to them, they all have names of places and streets in NYC which evoke that fantasy city. Everyone I’ve talked to who has visited NYC agrees there’s a weird familiarity about it from seeing it on films and TV so much. I love the aesthetic of the website. The main thing I really like is the way Christine has delivered a slight twist on the experience. The patterns are presented as online sewing courses and when you buy your pattern you enrol on the course which walks you through: Planning your garment; Preparing your pattern; Completing your project and includes tips along the way which I thought was quite a fresh approach and very beginner-friendly. Plus of course, as a fan of the original SATC, how could I ignore the NYC inspired fashion vibes?
I love the finished garment but I think maybe before I make another one of these I will size it down. The Bleeker top is meant to be oversized and I sewed the size according to my measurements, however I had to take 10 cm out of each sleeve which is unusual for me, I’m long-limbed and if anything I usually have to lengthen sleeves. I think I’ve also decided that although I’m easing into a more casual aesthetic, I don’t like garments to be too too oversized on me.
I was really pleased with it, the combination of the new duds and the first sunny day for I don’t know how long persuaded me to actually leave my house so we walked up the hill to my new allotment for some photos.
Have you discovered any new Indie pattern designers lately?
Thanks for dropping by,
I love the fabric and the color. That is great you worked on an indie pattern!
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I love a bit of stretch velour, I can’t deny it! I’m pleased I stepped away from my go-to vintage patterns, it’s good to change things up a bit.
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Now that’s a cool opportunity! I love your top and it looks great on you. I have just found a new designer and will be cutting out the PDF this weekend, hopefully. I too have a large stash of vintage sewing patterns so I am always undecided what to make! 😂
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Thanks, Linda, it’s a nice pattern.