1 November 2013

What Next? Seeking Your Ideas!


I’ve nearly finished writing my book - woop! There are just a few bits and bobs left to do before I submit, including using the feedback that a bunch of amazing testers are starting to send in to make sure the projects and instructions are spot on and super simple to use. I’ve loved working on this book but, being chronically unable to sit still, I’m already planning the next Big Project… and I’d love to get your input!

My aim in everything I do - blog, book, patterns, classes... - is to inspire women who want to take control of their style to dive into dressmaking. With refreshingly clear instructions and a DIY spirit, I'll take you through the steps to creating stylish clothes that you’ll love to wear.

Many of you have been asking when I’m going to release more dressmaking patterns. I’m itching to get started! But I want to crank it up a notch or two. As well as offering digital downloads to print at home, I’d also love to get my patterns printed. Digital made total sense to me when I started sharing my patterns as I had no idea how many people would want them… well, it turns out that lots of people do! Thank you so much for your support! I know many people (me included) love digital patterns for a low cost instant fix of sewing goodness, so I’m definitely going to keep digital as an option (it’s the future, y’all!). But I also understand that lots of you (again, me included) lurrrrve the beauty and convenience of pre-printed and packaged patterns. So that’s what I’m thinking of doing next…

I’m also working on interesting new ways of making the instructions and format of dressmaking patterns even more user-friendly. My professional background is in designing learning programmes, so this is a topic close to my heart. If you’ve used my existing digital patterns, you’ll know that the steps are outlined in two different ways so they’re accessible to beginners as well as experienced stitchers - detailed online photo tutorials demonstrating steps and techniques in detail, or simple written instructions for people who already know what they’re doing (and tick boxes to track your progress!). Do you have a brilliant idea for how to take the head scratching out of sewing? I’d love to hear it!

I’d be very grateful if you could let me know what you think in this questionnaire.

The questionnaire received an incredible 1,000 responses in 24 hours and is now closed. Thank you so much for your input! If you didn't get to complete the survey and have an innovative idea for making dressmaking simple, including for beginners, do leave a comment below.

[Soundtrack: ‘What’s a Girl to Do?’ by Bat for Lashes]

25 comments:

  1. Done!!!
    Quite enjoyed this one. :-)

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  2. Done! A survey I actually liked!!

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  3. Done, they were a good set of questions
    Jackie x

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  4. Hi Tilly - I really like your patterns but my problem is that I'm about 2 sizes bigger than you've drafted for. I'd love to make you Miette skirt -- but it won't fit me. I guess I'd be hoping to see your patterns go just a bit larger for the "fuller figure lady". I know it's meant to be harder to grade patterns up...but it's just a thought.

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    1. Thanks for the suggestion - expanding the range of sizes is definitely one of the things I'm hoping to do next time round. Did you fill in the survey? One of the questions is about sizing. Watch this space! :)

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  5. Hi Tilly done and dusted, hope it helps. Have a great weekend, can't wait for the book, big hugs
    Dorothy
    :-)xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

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  6. Just finished! As a teacher myself, I know how challenging but important finding a clear way to present information is. I appreciate anyone who is able to do so in a way that is helpful for the maximum number of people. Best of luck to you!

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    1. Thanks very much, Evie - I appreciate that.

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  7. All done ! And I'm a total beginner.

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  8. Finished! The main thing that stops me from making my own clothes very often is not being able to find the right fabric...any suggestions?

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    1. Thanks for filling in the survey. Is the issue that you can't find enough fabric shops? In which case, cast your eyes right and you'll see a list of places selling lovely fabrics. Or is it that you can't find one of the types of fabrics recommended for the pattern? It's not always easy to find anything nice other than cottons. Would you be interested in a list of specially selected fabrics for a particular project and where to buy them?

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    2. Yes, Tilly! I also have a hard time pairing fabric with patterns, as I'm a beginner and don't know the fabric types well. A list would be so much welcome! Especially if you include fabric that doesn't cost more than 8£/metre, and it is shipped worldwide :)
      I did fill in the survey ;)

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  9. I really like the idea of several fabric choices and sources. If you go this way, please do include the US. I like the idea of kits, but the cost gets prohibitive, and with sources you could have a wider range of choices.

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    1. I know how you feel - choosing fabric is part of the fun!

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  10. Thank you! Yes, if I see something beautiful that someone has made, I want to know what fabric they used and where they got it from ;)

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  11. I missed the survey (!) but just wanted to chip in about patterns. Call me old-school, but I love printed patterns, printing and taping pdfs just feels like misused sewing time to me. . . so I'm glad you're headed that way!

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  12. I want to second this - I love PDFs for small, simple projects, but time spent cutting and taping twenty pages together instead of sewing drives me crazy! I like the mix of options : )

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  13. I also have difficulty finding fabrics, so I would welcome a list of suggestions and some sources for them (well, US and/or Canadian sources, that is, I would likely not buy fabric overseas due to shipping costs). What I'd really love is a several swatches of fabric that would be appropriate. Maybe you could pair with a couple of online fabric shops that would sell a small bundle of swatches of fabrics that would work well for your pattern?

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  14. Re your book, just a quick note, please speak to your editor or other contact at the publisher and make sure that they have all of the book copy-edited properly. I've just been reading my Sewing Bee book (finally!) and I was horrified to find loads of really quite basic typos and errors that haven't been caught in the main text. It says the instructions have been edited, but I don't think the rest of it can be - and it really undermines my faith in the actual instructions. I'd hate for your hard work to be undermined in that way. I know I'm an editor myself, so I notice these things, but I really think anyone would. Hope that helps make sure you have a super book for everyone to buy!

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Feel free to chip in! Please don't comment anonymously though - you can leave your email if you don't have an OpenID. Comments on older posts are moderated for spam so won't show up immediately.