Good News in Sewing, Vol. 1

Remember how one of my goals for 2018 is to put my money where my mouth is? Part of that is to salute the companies and bloggers that are making the blogosphere more inclusive and inspiring! To that end, I’ve decided to start a periodic round-up of awesomeness in the blogosphere!

More Inclusive Models


Helen’s Closet has always had illustrations that include women of various skin colours and sizes, but now Helen has her first plus-size model! The model just happens to be her cousin, and doesn’t she look fabulous in these leggings?


True Bias released the Nikko Top and Dress, which I believe features her first model that is a person of colour! I love seeing designers present their clothes on a variety of women, so everyone can see themselves represented and looking great!


Colette has been using diverse models of all ages, sizes and ethnicities for longer than any other company that I can think of, so it’s no surprise that their new Myrna dress is shown looking fabulous on models of different sizes and skin tones! I admire that Colette have made this a core of their company over the years!

Speaking of companies that have been using more diverse models for a few years…


Tilly and the Buttons! Tilly teased her new book this week, and it reminded me that she has been using diverse models for a while now. She included a paragraph in her post about how she likes to use non-professional models because they are more relatable, and how all four models in her book are talented women she knows in person. The models show a range of sizes and skin colours, and I find that inspiring!

Great Media


I got a copy of Sewn Magazine in the mail last week, and reading it is such a joy! Page after page is full of inspiring, confident, talented sewists of all shapes, sizes and colours. Every outfit exudes creativity and strength, which makes it the antidote to normal everyday life, where most people dress to fit in. Sewn makes me want to put more flair in my wardrobe, and makes me feel like I too could be a badass seamstress!


Maria Denmark launched her first English-language online sewing magazine last week, called Sewing Life! She’s been publishing it in Danish for several years already, and from what I can tell, it features 2 free patterns per issue (1 in this first free issue). In this issue it’s a really cute cocoon dress, which they show you in detail how to adapt into knit and woven versions for each season. I’ve always had good luck with Maria’s patterns in the past!

The pattern runs up to Euro size 54 (I would wear size 48ish), which is a wider size range than the typical indie pattern. Throughout the magazine, the “models” are the magazine staff (Maria, Nanna from How To Do Fashion, and their design assistant) who range in age – and there’s a intro section where they each describe their body type and even show a croquis of their figure! I love the openness about body shape and the inclusive sizing. Definitely worth checking out, especially if you like Scandinavian design!

Our Awesome Community


Did you hear that the Pattern Review Weekend for 2018 is in Stratford, Ontario this year? That’s just an hour from where I live, and I can’t wait to join the fun! I’m so excited to meet even more sewists in person. Registration is this week, so keep you eyes open if you want to attend!

What good news have you seen in the sewing world lately? Please leave links or comments below. And if you appreciate something that a company or designer is doing, please let them know so that these good trends continue!

18 thoughts on “Good News in Sewing, Vol. 1

  1. I’m glad you wrote this post Gillian, as I’m into a bit of a sewing rut. Same old, same old, tried and true, but wanting to “sew outside of the box” if you get my drift. At 63 I find myself becoming inhibited with my sewing projects, and your post gave me some great inspiration. I purchased a copy of Sewn Magazine so I can see what creative sewing enthusiasts are coming up with. Thanks!


    1. Let me know what you think about Sewn! I’ve only checked out the one issue, but I find it very imspiring and i hope you do too!


    1. It’s nice just to pay attention to good things sometimes, isn’t it? Because there really is a lot of great change in the sewing community!


  2. I love this post. To me it is fabulous that more indies are expanding their size ranges or being more inclusive. There is nothing worse that seeing some fab pattern and finding out that you can’t buy it as you are outside the size range (note I didn’t say “sew” as my pattern consumption is off the chart compared to my output) and I imagine that not seeing your skin colour represented too would be equally galling. I haven’t ever sewn a Maria Denmark pattern but am off to Copenhagen in a couple of weeks so will hopefully get a chance to pick up some sewing mags while I am there. I like Ottobre as that is really inclusive size-wise. Burdastyle is a huge hit or miss with their plus patterns. Xx


    1. Well, come by the MariaDenmark office when you are here, and I’ll get you a MariaDenmark pattern to try! Shoot me an email and we can figure out the details:-)
      I have to say that our printed magazines aren’t all that, though…


  3. I am glad you wrote this post. I find it so helpful. Pattern review in Canada. When I was in high school, we took a day trip to Stratford. That wouldn’t be very far for a Michigan person.


  4. Thank you for reminding us how great our sewing community is. I love the diversity of the models and how we take into consideration everyone. Everyone is included!! I also love the true pictures without a bunch of touch ups. I have looked at the Avenue and Lanye Bryant websites and their plus size models look so great and toned. But found an article recently to show just how much touch up they do. I do not agree with the mis-representation. I would like to see an image of how the clothes would actually fit on my body. Great job for putting members of our community in such a great light.


    1. Agreed on the touch-ups! I’m sure that indies use photoshop to even out skin tone or tame flyaway hairs, but i also trust that they aren’t making people look slimmer or smoother!


    1. Agreed! It’s nice to see the pattern on someone my size, but it’s also nice to think that the designers thinks people my size will look great in it! 😉


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