Another Summer Charlie

After my last Charlie in a cotton stretch fabric I wanted to make another Charlie, but this time in a summer fabric with some more drape…..Yes, I clearly still have vacation on my mind!

viscose stoffenstraatAfter shopping around on the Internet I found this Green-Yellow viscose at De Stoffenstraat and was absolutely sold! I love green. And the yellow and white give it that summery look I was going for. Well, that ánd the floral print of course.
Now I know it does look a little bit like grandma’s old tablecloth, but that’s exactly what I love about it. Who doesn’t want a dress from grandma’s old tablecloth?

What did I do this time to get a new Charlie look?

  • Like I said I wanted it to be drapy, so choose a 100% viscose fabric.
  • Unfortunately it was a bit harder to find a nice contrasting fabric to go with it. I wanted it to match the lighter green, but had no luck anywhere. So I decided it was going to be tablecloth ALL-over.
  • Since it is summery and a little bold I liked it to be shorter, so yup….took off quite a bit of the length. The hem might seem shorter in the back then in the front, but that is caused by my funny posing (not my favourite hobby as I always feel a bit uncomfortable).
  • Other fit adjustments are the same as I did to my previous Charlie including the new cap sleeve.
  • I changed the direction of the band to be on the bias. That way I got a straight print instead of the diagonal print.
  • Instead of having the waist tie to the side I liked it in the back. Only adjusmtent here is the length of the straps, so they end up even again.
  • Instead of the rounded hemline at the front skirt, I decided that the print asked for a straight squared hemline instead.
  • Matching the print on the side seam was not so important to me, but I did match up the print on the front skirt. Making it a bit easier for the eye. FotorCharliekort

This fabric feels wonderful and I believe that this dress will be perfect for our camping plans…. a quick wrap dress on top of my bikini (yes, I am expecting some sunshine by now). Perfect for when I need to go get…uh…. what will it be? Ice-cream? Or a drink at the bar? Yes! I think it will have to be both every single day for the next couple of weeks!

Note that as I enjoy my ice-cream & drinks the web shop will be closed:
From June 24th – July 11th.

Digital patterns can still be bought as this will get to you via automated magic.
For printed versions please visit any of our Stockists.

 

Charlie gets a cap sleeve

In May we were extremely happy to have finalized all the pdf patterns. Of course this was celebrated with a pdf sale: see our May Newsletter.

In June the focus was supposed to be translating patterns to English…. that might just sound like translating a whole bunch of text but it really is a little more complex than that (see my earlier posts about seam allowance etc.)

Now I really did start working on this less creative phase, but…. owwwww….. I can’t help it…. It’s been too long since I have designed, so I’ve experienced some serious withdrawls. I NEEDED a creativity shot and ended up putting the translation task aside for a few weeks….
I decided that it is time for some fun stuff!
June 24th we will close our doors for a few weeks to celebrate summer. Having vacation in mind I figured I needed to make a summer dress. Yes, for myself of course! But something that would be nice to share as well.
Sooooooo, I made a Charlie with CAP SLEEVE!
I love how it turned out:

Fotor nashville charlie

Now of course I would like to share this new Charlie sleeve with all Charlie sewers among us.
In case you also would like to add a summer version to your closet: Here is the sleeve. Also to be found on the Tips & Tricks page.

Finishing:
You can either finish the hem with a shaped facing, bias tape, a rolled hem, or like I did (which is a little less clean but works for bulky fabric), 1 cm seam allowance finished with overlock, turned in and topstitched at 7mm.

Fotor sleeve nashvl

Now what else did I do to the Charlie dress to make it more personal?

  • First of all I had to change the length. All Rosie & Me patterns are drafted for a 1.68 m tall lady and I am exactly 10 cm’s taller. So that is the amount that I added to the pattern in length.
  • In width I am betweeen a size 36 & 38. I started from a size 38 and reduced the width, especially in the back.
  • My contrast fabric was too stiff for a nice drapy tie strap, so I eliminated this all together and added sew on push buttons.
  • I rotated the fabric direction of the band, to give it a more interesting look.
  • When you have two little girls to look after you do a lot of kneeling, bending, crawling (seriously I do it all the time…it’s my new yoga) and therefore I don’t like a wrap dress.
    Ha! Then why did I make the Charlie? Because you can easily stitch the wrap closed! Shhhhh….this info is only for insiders. I topstitched on top of the hemstitching (so you don’t see it), through both layers of the skirt. Beginning just 10 cm below the waistband and ending just 10 cm before the overlap stops. Making it more like a pencil dress, but with the look of a wrap dress.

I’m really pleased with it and think that I will wear it a lot! The back might be a little less interesting since there is no contrasting strap going around the waist now, but the print of the fabric is so nice that I actually love it.
The fabric is a cotton stretch and I bought it by Joop Modestoffen.

Our 1st digital pattern! Wiehooo!

After going through some (to say the least!) technical difficulties we can now officially anounce that:

THE FIRST DIGITAL ROSIE & ME PATTERN IS AVAILABLE!
…..doing a little dance behind my computer as I type this…..

It was in the planning for a long long time and I am super excited that it all worked out. Ok, ok, it is only one pattern so far….but now that the road has been paved the rest of the collection should be a smoother ride. To kick of our digital pattern collection we thought to go for our bestseller, the Brooke pattern. As you can see we now have a dropmenu where you can select either a ‘Printed Pattern’ which is the booklet that you are used to, or a ‘Digital Pattern’ in pdf format.

Now why would you choose for a Digital Pattern?
There are few pros and cons to digital patterns.

First of course the pro’s:

  • You can start your project immediately! No waiting for your printed pattern to be deliverd by mail, no I mean you can start printing them right NOW! As soon as your payment is made you will get a pop up with your downloads and start printing them.
  • The downloadable files will be kept in ‘your account’ permanently. This means you can reprint them whenever you want….if you don’t like retracing a pattern, just reprint them. And if you want a different size in the future or if you have lost a pattern, just go to your account and download them again, as many times as you like.
  • Digital patterns are much cheaper. Not only the pattern itself is cheaper, you also don’t have to pay for shipping costs. So you save money twice.

And yes there are a few cons as well:

  • It takes some paper and ink to print all the pages. Make sure to set your printer on ‘draft’ mode. This will save you a little ink.
  • You have to cut and assemble all the pages together to create one big pattern sheet. That takes a bit more work. There is an alternative to this. With your files there will also be a single sheet file. You can take this file to your local print shop and have the pattern printed on one big sheet. That does save you some cutting and pasting, but of course you do have to pay for the print costs.
  • You won’t have the pretty booklet that the Rosie & Me patterns come in.

If you have never ordered a digital pattern and the whole thing might seem kinda scary (all new technological things always seem kinda scary to me so I understand)….I can hopefully help you breathe through this by reading our ‘How to pdf‘ tutorial. All the need to knows, tips, tricks, pictures on how to’s are bundled in this document.

Anything still unclear? Please let us know! We are constantly trying to improve things, so your feedback is very important to us.

Glossary & What’s New

First of all, I haven’t been on vacation. Oh boy, no I wish! It might seem awfully quiet around Rosie’s headquarters, but believe me I have been busy!
Trying to get the business internationalized and professionalizing some of the processes is more work then I had imagined.
Perhaps things like translating a website, tutorials, patternbooklets, updating website inlog accounts for wholesalers, transforming paper patterns to downloadable pieces is not the kind of work that I really really really enjoy all the time.
A lot of the technical stuff I have no clue how to go about it, so it takes a lot of searching, networking, resourcing to get where I want to be.

My hands ache to create and sew and share new pattern design ideas (what I like to do most!)….but for now I need to first concentrate on getting more professional, that will help me where I want to be in the future. Once that is all straightened out I can get back into the more enjoyable things of work again. Yay!

So to give you an update:

  • Website is almost completely translated to English….except for the Tips & Tricks page. Half the tutorials are now in English, but as you can see there are a few that are only available in Dutch. While going over the Tips & Tricks translations, I found that I still really needed to write a Glossary of Sewing Terms. This has been on my wish list forever, but was always pushed aside a little. Now was the time! I wrote all the terms that I believe are handy to know when sewing Rosie & Me patterns and added it to the Tips & Tricks page. Especially for beginners, I believe this can be a helpful tool. And yes both in Dutch and in English of course.

 

  • Up to this point, Stockists could only place their order by sending me an e-mail. At the moment, I am working with my technical support on making a wholesale login area within the website. Here, it is possible to buy the patterns against wholesale prices. See your history, find billing information, and ….well really just finally prefossionalising the website. This is going to save me a lot of manual administration and will be so much easier for our Sellers as well.

 

  • Then as mentioned: pdf patterns. Another big big thing for me. When going international you also want to give people a choice between a printed paper pattern or a digital pattern. If you live in the Bahama’s and want to make something for next week, it will be nice to know that you can start right away. It does take a bit more work (printing & assembling), but it will save you shipping time and also a little money as the pdf patterns will be cheaper. The lay-out, formats & design, is all decided upon and the existing Dutch patterns are being transformed as we speak. There are a few technical things that need to be sorted out still, but the pdf option should roll out soon soon soon.

 

  • Finally, I have received several emails from sewists that are anxiously waiting for the patterns to come out in English. The above three steps truly need to be finished first (sorry) before the patterns can be printed in English. So please hold on just a little longer….. I am grateful for your patience and knowing that there are people waiting for it, really does help me get through this little less creative stage of work. Thank you!

I also can’t wait until all of the above is done. I think there needs to be some sort of celebration then. Ow, what a good idea…yes I’m going to think of a fun YES WE DID IT – celebration already. Without getting tooooo distracted of what I actually should be doing of course….
Will keep you posted! Have a lovely sunny weekend!