The future is Dimpsy!

Late in 2014 it’s what I had decided 2015 was all going to be about…

I sat down and made a little list of the things I liked to work on, the things that make my heart sing, and put a smile on my face, I mixed these with the things that actually make me money and came up with a pretty pleasing list which happened to drop all of the things which were unhealthily stressing me out! Yay! This littler list was what I decided to concentrate upon them in 2015.

The past year has taught me so many things about running a Small Business, not least ‘don’t push things that aren’t selling or aren’t making you happy’, and this year I’m trying to build Laura After Midnight into a sustainable business with which I can support myself properly, in a less living on beans kinda student-y way, whilst being happy and having some time off.

Building upon the Patterns I have already released is a big part of that, and it’s a big part I enjoy too (crazy, right? I hated Math as a kid!), and continuing along the road to joining the ranks of all of the other wonderful Independent Pattern Makers out there is incredibly important to me and I have been working away on the next design to be released this past week!

I called her Dimpsy (if you are any where near to Devon you will know this means dappled shade) and you may have noticed the Samples popping up on Facebook and Instagram! Work continues apace here at The Midnight Atelier on the new The Dimpsy T (love that name!) which now has a release date of the 24th April! Yay!

   

I had wanted to create a simple t-shirt from Jersey fabric however; after working upon a few samples and getting nowhere I remembered I hate sewing Jersey fabric! I mean, I’ll do it, and I’m not stopping anyone else from doing it, and I often sew stretch for costuming however; right now Jersey is not a fabric I’m interested in constructing garments from. As soon as I made the change to Cotton the ideas kept coming and it was difficult to choose the ones to use!

I decided to use some of my Pattern Cutting wizadry and pop the Darts at the front of the Bodice, with a little seam which runs from the Collar down to the Dart. I am all about this detailing, I love it! The Collars lie slightly either side of the Seam and just look heavenly!

So far I have designed this t-shirt to have two different Collar Patterns, a small Cap Sleeve, Peek-a-Book back detailing and that glorious Central Dart however; the T-Shirt will also be released with a Booklet of ‘Hacks’ to make this peach of a Top into a Dress, or alter the Pattern to create a Pin Tuck or Pleated detail at the front. It’s going to be so cute!

dimpsy t promo poster

Because creating Patterns is an expensive habit- I’m going to be Grading and creating about six Samples in total as well as sending out Pattern Test Samples and quite a lot more over the next few weeks, I have popped up Pre-Order listings up on Etsy to help me out! If you think you’d like to make a Dimpsy T pre-order your copy today and help me out a little in the process, just click below… In return you’ll get 10% off, an instant copy of ‘Understanding Vintage and Modern Patterns’, as well as the ‘Hacks’ Booklet for free, and it’ll be emailed or shipped to you directly on the 24th April.

PDF Dimpsy T Sewing Pattern   dimpsy pre order pdf

I’m also planning a Sew-Along and I’ll need Pattern Testers soon so watch this space over the next few weeks for more details!

Happy stitching!

Consider my mind blown…

If you want to make cloths, or know a bit but are a tad nervous to start creating the grandiose creations from you head, look at this!

DIYcouture has made two unusual clothing collections: rather than purchasing a garment, the DIYcouture customer purchases a set of simple, visual instructions, which enable them to make that garment themselves.

The instructions remove the need for complex sewing patterns. Diagrams & pictures take the maker through the creation process, so that unique, personally fitted pieces of clothing are accessible to anyone.

The DIYcouture collections are groups of simple, classic pieces that can be almost endlessly re-invented.

These form the seed of an infinite, mushrooming mega collection by a multitude of makers. Each of the pieces is a possibility brought to life again & again in a new incarnation by every person that chooses to sew it themselves.

Inspired by the thousands of invisible pairs of hands around the globe that make the clothes we buy, DIYcouture hopes to inspire people to get up to their elbows in the 3-dimensional world of creation. It supports the slow revolution. Helping people to produce garments that are precious, rather than disposable, this is the antithesis of fast-fashion.

Click on the picture to be taken to the site, it’s a revelation! Don’t be put off by the styling, click the collections tab & then a garment you like to be taken to the instructions or tutorials. Imagine the pieces in fabric you like & I think you’ll agree the sky is the limit!

Happy stitching!

Making my soul sing.

My life has always been a little hectic, in the past I have sometimes found it difficult to say no to projects, work & ideas & even now find myself easily distracted when something shiny heads my way! All of which means I can find myself as I do now with many different and interesting projects on the boil, but with little or no time to dedicate to them all!!

The solution? You’ll find I’ll be blogging about costume making a lot more over the next couple weeks, and not my own lovely business as I have been, I shall have to put it to one side for a while in order to complete the following mad selection of costumes: A spandex Spiderman costume for Frontier Costumes, an Edwardian coat, dress & hat for The Little Black Box Theater, men’s tailored shirts for a commission & garment construction for a London based designer who has run out of time herself.

The reason behind my diversity? Money! I think I flat out panicked a week or so ago & agreed to the majority of these projects to make sure I would be able to make rent next month. . . it was about the time I was scaring myself with tax returns & general self employment doubts. The lesson to be learnt is: realize your goals. Stick with your goals. Do not get sidetracked because then your goals get all confused and scattered!

I think I may, finally have learnt this lesson. I have been tracking my shop stats closely & it has not escaped my attention that views are falling & that at least once a week, or even every couple days,  I should maybe have a new thing to add so I can blog this, tweet this & generally reward people for looking & being interested by having something new to look at! It’s the simple principle I am operating under for this blog, & it does seem to be working.

It is probably quite obvious by now that I am making a lot of this up as I go… I am so used to collaborating with a Director, or team of people that striking out on my own has been- & will continue to be- a massive learning curve.

What I did find very inspiring was  a discussion thread on Etsys Business Topics Forum from someone who had recently made her 10,oooth sale. She explained it had been hard, that her business had been growing over a number of years & because of sheer hard work, positivity & determination continues to do so. She encouraged every new start up to ‘keep the faith & and work hard at it!’, be open to new ideas, change & to listen to the Etsy ‘old timers’. I have since read more on several forum threads & now have a clearer plan of action because of this amazing post.

She also reminded me that “it doesn’t take 10,000 sales to be successful. If you are proud of yourself, proud of what you make, and your soul sings, then you’ve reached success no matter what your numbers are.”

I am sincerely thankful I stumbled accross this as I had begun to forget to be happy and proud of who I am and what I am trying to do. I’ve been happier in the last 24 hours than I have been in the last week & I am busy rustling up new delights for Laura After Midnight alongside the aforementioned costume projects. So I only get six hours sleep, who cares if my soul is busy singing?

See the original post here: http://www.etsy.com/teams/7722/business-topics/discuss/10011990/

Happy stitching!