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creating patterns - new venture? or insanity?

If you've been following my blog for any decent amount of time, you've probably noticed that I've created a few patterns to offer for free in PDF form -- mainly things I've created for Victoria since she was a baby.  Baby things are relatively easy to make patterns for because they're so small.  I've tried to stick to easy-to-sew items so that anyone using the patterns can stitch them up quickly -- useful for those times when you realize your child has suddenly grown out of her clothes and the reenactment is this weekend

Although I don't get to near as many events as I used to (or would like to) in this stage of life, I still work on 1860s clothes for the sheer fun of it.  And, naturally, when I'm coming up with new clothing items for Victoria, I end up working up a pattern.  I may not always have access to originals, but you can do a remarkable amount of drafting even looking at a photo.  I believe I've been able to create pretty accurate garments using photos of originals, and my own common sense.

(I hope anyone who has used my patterns have also felt that way about their result.  If you have had any problems with my patterns...please tell me!)

Anyway, it was suggested to me recently that I formalize my patterns and sell them.  Wow!  This idea really appeals to me, because as much as I enjoy sewing, I've come to truly enjoy drafting up patterns.  Mocking them up and testing them over and over again...well, that's not so exciting...but drafting patterns from an original and coming out with a useable, accurate garment?  Fun stuff!  (And that's not even counting patterns for shoes and slippers!)

I doubt I would be able just invest in a large-format print job right now, with my patterns printed on large sheets and put into neat little envelopes like the "professionals" do.  That's quite pricey.  So for now, I may have to make do with downloadable PDF patterns which could be printed off on your home computer and taped together to make the full sized pattern.  That's how I print off my "test" patterns at home -- and I know I've seen other designers create PDFs of their full-size patterns in this same manner.  When formatted correctly, a PDF can print off into an accurately scaled pattern.  Plus it's "instant gratification" for the buyer, right?

My only fear would be that it would be too much trouble for home seamstress to print off and tape together the pattern at home.  It's not too much trouble for me; but then I'm used to doing it.

What are your thoughts, dear readers?  Are you interested?

Amy xoxoxo

7 comments:

Rebecca said...

In my opinion, anyone that would be really interested would put forth the effort. I make women's CW period dresses and they are work but I think far worth the effort.
The method of having to draft and put together a pattern from a couple pieces of paper, as you know, is also the way that the ladies of the 1860's had to draft and sew. It just makes it more authentic.
Plus your daughter and you always looks a fashion plate anyway. Who wouldn't want to do exactly the way you do it. The proof is in the pudding.

Rhea said...

I'd certainly be interested :) We do 1850s/60s reenactment and I have an 18mth old girl the size of a two year old who I'm currently making costume for. There seems to be no decent patterns for childrens clothes availible here in the UK, and the ones I have seen availible from the states would cost too much once I take shipping and import duty into account. So I've had to rely on the few good people like yourself who have posted free patterns on the web and my own limited ingenuity :D

Rachel said...

You do an amazing job! Of course we would all love it!

Nancy-Raven Hellfire said...

I personally have a 4 months baby and there is not that much good or accurate pattern.I take a look on what you did and it's really great.I sometimes make pattern,a few pieces of paper didn't stop me.If people want a full piece to make a greater size , a huge roll of paper in a fabric store is less then 10$If you enjoy making pattern don't stop because of little detail.If you sell a lot of your pattern , later you could possibly offer a better format.

Chastity said...

I love all of the little girl clothes that you make and more patterns would be wonderful and I would be willing to buy them.

Madame Lafayette said...

I think is fantastic

Rebecca Ann said...

I just got around to reading your post Amy and I think its a grand idea! Go for it. I know friends of mine could use the patterns and if I have kids someday, I want to reenact with them and would use the patterns definately. May the Lord bless you as you take on this new endeavor.

God bless!
Rebecca