1 year of Cashmerette Patterns!

Happy birthday, Cashmerette patterns! Jenny posted today that it’s one year since her first pattern release (there’s a sale!) and it got me thinking about all the many things I’ve sewn from her patterns in the last 12 months.

What I like most about Jenny’s patterns (and no, this isn’t sponsored – it’s pure fangirl love) is that the fit is good straight from the package. I tend to sew a 14e/f at the bust and grade to a 16 at the waist and hips – that’s one cup size larger than the measurements suggest, but otherwise following the suggested size for my 42-37-47 figure.) Because the fit is good, Cashmerette has become my go-to as the base for hacks or adaptations, as you’ll see!

Appleton

The first Cashmerette pattern was the Appleton Wrap Dress! The black and white one is my tester version in rayon jersey, and has been a favourite for meetings and look-professional-at-work days. The middle dress is my maxi/sleeveless hack sewn for my birthday… and the third version is a Japanese-inspired print I sewed last fall.

Thoughts:

  • Beautifully drafted pattern, and the skirt has never revealed too much!
  • The pattern is somewhere between sex-on-a-stick and business-wear. It all depends on the fabric and your attitude that day! I have seen so many women look great in this dress.
  • The skirt is quite a slim fit, so for me it takes a bit of confidence to feel comfortable.
  • I need to go a cup-size up when I sew it in something more stable like ITY… if there isn’t enough fabric over the bust, then the neckline becomes more revealing… which would be fine except all my bras have quite a high bridge and it tends to show!

WASHINGTON

Next came the Washington dress. I’ve never found the right combination of fabrics for the yoked skirt as drafted… but this pattern is worth it for the snug bodice alone. In the blue dress I paired it with a 1/2 circle skirt and used clear elastic to ruche the neckline into a gentle V. The black and white version is cut with a free-handed higher neckline.

Thoughts:

  • For me, what sets the bodice apart from other similar t-shirt dress patterns is that there is significant extra length in the front to go over the bust, and the built-in FBA gives a great fit at the underarm.
  • Consider going a size up for a looser fit like in the black-and-white dress… otherwise it’s quite formfitting!

concord 1

Next is my all-time fav: the Concord tee! So basic but so good. The green one is my tester version, and convinced me that a high neckline might actually work on me. The stripe quickly became my most-worn shirt last winter. Both are sewn in rayon, so the fit is slightly loose, which I prefer.

concord 2

More stripes! The coral version has little clear sequins in the red stripes, and the floral was sewn for Cali Fabrics blog this summer.

Concord dresses

And finally my favourite variations: dresses! The greeney-blue sleeveless dress has a triangular wrap that gives nice definition over the bust and waist. The floral one is an extended version of the tunic pattern, sewn in textured ponte. Most worn of all, the coral and black version is just a t-shirt with a ruffle at the hem!

Thoughts:

  • The shaping at the side seams is SO GOOD.
  • I taught this pattern in t-shirt classes this summer, and it was really easy for beginners and the sizing chart gave them a good fit every time.
  • I find the shoulder ever-so-slightly wide on me, but I actually think that it visually balances my wider hips a bit.
  • I’ve got a sweater-knit cardigan hack on the way…
  • Even though the pattern has lots of variations, like a curved or cropped hem, sleeve tab, 3 necklines and 3 sleeve lengths, I’ve stuck almost exclusively to the high neck and 3/4 sleeve. I just love the proportions!

And… that’s it! Turns out that I didn’t sew the 3 other patterns for myself. I sewed two Springfield tanks for my sister, and it’s a solid pattern. I tested the Upton, and it would be my first choice if I was going to a wedding or something where I wanted to look elegant… but for my everyday wardrobe I like a more modern silhouette. Finally, I chicken-out of testing the new button up shirt, but I’ve got the pattern and the class now, and I plan to give shirt-making a try this winter!

(On a side note, looking through these old pics reminded me of all I learned through doing the Better Pictures Project – and I feel like that work paid off in the form of , well, better pictures! You can find all of last year’s posts about photography here.) 

At this very minute, Jenny and her professional pattern drafter are drawing up the next 6 patterns… and I can’t wait to see what they are! If one day my wardrobe can be mostly Cashmerette, I’ll be a happy girl. In the mean time, this post has reminded me of some great fall clothes that I need to dig out of storage and start wearing again!

What are your favourite pattern companies? In addition to Cashmerette, I’d have to add Jalie and Closet Case Files. I could happily make a wardrobe with just those three!


32 thoughts on “1 year of Cashmerette Patterns!

  1. I agree that it’s good to have a go-to pattern company because you like the fit and appreciate their styles. Every pattern in that company’s pattern line compliments each other. I’m a fan girl of Megan Nielsen patterns because they fit me and I can easily change them into many variations. Happy Thanksgiving!

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    1. Megan Neilson has a great style and “look”! I’ve only sewn one of her patterns, and I got annoyed that I was outside the largest size… and because of that, i’ve never tried them again! I really should though – or maybe just sew her kids clothes for my nieces!

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  2. Well, you are one of the bloggers who really showcased this great pattern brand for me. So thank you for getting me on the bandwagon too – you look so great in everything that it’s inspirational to others. I will say that I wish Jenny would tell us a bit more about her mystery pattern drafter🙂 I understand that the company and vision are hers alone but I’m surprised, given that she’s been open about not being the drafter, that she hasn’t yet told us a bit more about establishing that crucial part of the company’s development. Of course, only if she wants to! I’m just very curious…

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    1. I”m really happy that the Appleton worked for you too! I like knowing that her sizing and shaping is consistent, so I feel like I can jump in and make my adjustments (adding room for my butt!) without overthinking things!

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  3. I’m about to make a Concord. Trying to decide on size as I’m not keen on negative ease. I’m tall so will need to lengthen. I’m using PDF so have that to stick together first!

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    1. You can definitely go up a size… or use a fabric like rayon that gives a more relaxed fit. Check the length as is – I find it too long, and always have to shorten it! (But I’m 5’2″, so quite short, though I have a relatively long back!)

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    1. Do you have plans for what fabric to use for the first one? I’ve got a black chambray-style shirting that i bought years ago to muslin Archer and never used… but another part of me thinks that if I”m going to make a shirt, and possibly only ever one shirt (because I’m not sure it’s something my wardrobe needs) I should use a fabric I”ll love sewing and wearing! Hmmm… dilemmas!

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      1. I’ve got some beautiful polkadot chambrays and even a floral one, but I for sure will try a black or white for the first attempt tho. I really miss having those staples in my wardrobe.

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  4. Gillian, don’t forget the Appleton you made me, in black with white birds — a favourite dress for me, too, and I only wish I had more of them! (I plan on wearing it to Thanksgiving tomorrow. Nothing like a good wrap dress to accommodate ALLLLLLL the food.) Thank you for keeping me clothed in comfort and style — you, for the sewing, and Jenny, for the patterns!

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    1. I was going to include your Cashmerette makes too, then i couldn’t think what I’ve made you! There’s the Concord you sewed (Do you wear it? Let me know if you ever want me to look for more fabric for you…) and that Appleton… and the Springfeilds… and the Concord floral/stripe… is there more?

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      1. Those are all the ones that I can think of that are DEFINITELY Cashmerette patterns — there are loads more tees, but I think they mostly predate the Concord, and only the one Appleton and the two Springfields. I do wear the Concord I made, and I predict it will get lots of wear as a simple, smooth underlayer under sweaters this winter, too.

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  5. I’ve always wished I was in the size range for Jenny’s patterns as I have loved all her patterns too. Now I just need to find someone who professionally drafts for an a cup pear shape with puny shoulders and I’ll be set. I haven’t found any one pattern company that I love so much I’d buy all their patterns and I have to adjust everything anyway. I have had good results with Big4 patterns so I tend to buy them more than any other, and next in line are indie pattern companies that I know have professional industry pattern drafting background or use professional drafters (like Jenny). I just found a new Australian one called Designer Stitch that ticks all those boxes and making up a wrap dress that so far is just beautifully drafted so that could be a new favorite.

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    1. Do you have any luck with Sewaholic? That’s the only line I know of that is specifically for pears… but if Big 4 works for you, then that’s awesome!

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  6. I love Cashmerette too🙂 I have three – I haven’t made the Harrison yet but I signed up for the class too so I’m looking forward to making my first shirt ever. Love the Concord Tee a lot and I haven’t made the Washington yet either but it’s on my list for sure. I was thinking about cotton/bamboo for top and waist and silk for the bottom. Finding just the right colours is my challenge on that one.

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  7. So many great makes! (The Appletons are my favourite, I think.😉 )

    Can’t wait to see what you do with the shirt! My Fabricland has been getting some amazing (ok, comparatively) shirtings in this fall and I am really wishing I was more of a button-up girl to make use of them.

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    1. I really don’t see the appeal of wearing a button-up either… but it seems like some kind of sew right of passage I have to at least try once? I haven’t been paying attention to Fabricland shirtings, but I’ll have to take a look!

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        1. That just means you are far nicer than me. No way in hell am I starting to make my husband the black dress shirts he likes… I can buy that for $50 and have time to sew for myself!😛 You make your husband really interested stuff though, that’s not so easy to purchase!

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          1. Yeah, there’s certain details that he likes that aren’t hard to make, but aren’t super easy to find together in storebought clothes. Also he likes mandarin collars (easy) and no pockets (even easier.)😉 and my kids love the flannel shirts right now, too…

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  8. Hi Gillian, thanks for showcasing your Cashmerette makes for us. So far, I have only tried the Concord and I too found the shoulders a bit wide. Your review suggests that the shoulders of the Washington and Appleton are narrower, would you agree with that? Would love to hear your thoughts on this.

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    1. Yeah, I find Concord a bit wide on my, but the same size in Washington and Appleton fits more narrowly on me! You can try comparing the two patterns side by side, but I think you’ll probably be fine! Happy sewing!

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  9. For the last Appleton that I made, I actually altered the skirt to be more A-line. I also left the underlay the full width, because I naturally have a long stride and wasn’t confident with the coverage on my first one. (Ended up making an elastic stay of sorts to keep it closed.) But the second skirt was perfect, and I’m keeping that modification for all future versions!

    As for pattern companies, I’ve long been a Sewaholic fangirl, and will be interested to see what they put out now that Tasia is no longer running it. I’ve also been pleased with everything I’ve made from Deer & Doe so far.

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  10. You always amaze me with how many different looks you can get out of one pattern! I’ve only made one of Jenny’s patterns so far – but I loved it and I have a couple more on deck!

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