Did I just type the words "pattern release"?
Yep, and I also just had to catch my breath as soon as I typed them. Because instantly my heart started racing and I got a little shaky. I've got a whole bunch of emotions swirling around, but one thing is for certain: a sewing pattern that I've been working on has been released today. Gasp.
Okay, with that now said, let me fill in the story.
About a year ago I was tinkering with a tunic design when Elizabeth, the amazing woman behind Squam Art Workshops, suggested a collaboration to make this pattern available to others. I was thrilled at the idea - and also terrified - but Elizabeth's "let's just try it" attitude was SO inspiring. We jumped in even though it was an entirely new project for both of us. A few roadblocks and many revisions later, I can wholeheartedly say that the journey towards today's release has been...wonderful.
The pattern is called the West Water Tunic, fittingly named for one of the cabins at Squam. As a garment, it's simple, comfortable and customizable. I have a strong bias for sewing the tunic with Robert Kaufman's Essex Yarn Dyed Linen (my closet and Instagram feed can attest to that!) but I can't wait to see it made with other fabrics. Personally I've lined up some fine wale corduroy for my next one.
As for the "terrified" bit of the story, I must admit that putting something out there in the world is scary. My inner voice keeps asking, what if I missed a spelling mistake? What if my way of writing instructions is really unclear? What if I get called out for not being a professional something-or-other? Fingers crossed this kind of paranoia is natural. To distract myself from worrying, I'm trying to focus on what I've learned through this collaboration. Skills like grading to layout design are great, but they actually give way to a much bigger lesson, and one that I should have learned - or better yet, realized - long ago: I love designing clothes. Not just making, actually designing. It might sound small, but it's quite a significant acknowledgment for me. And I have Elizabeth, and this project, and the very fact that I attended Squam in 2014 to thank for it.
But enough about my inner dialogue, there's a pattern to share! More information about the digital and paper version of West Water Tunic pattern can be found at the Squam site here, and Elizabeth's pitch perfect introduction is here.
Phew, secret project officially shared. And now I've got some corduroy to wash up and start cutting out.
(And wow, thank you, thank you Elizabeth - for your courage, patience, kind words and excellent vision. You're simply amazing.)