I’ve sewn a LOT of Style Arc over the years. It’s a pattern line that some people are wary about trying, either because the instructions are sparse or because the patterns are sometimes sold in just a single size. (You do get the size up and the size down from what you order in a PDF though, in separate files, and they’ve started doing multi-size patterns for a few dollars more.) Style Arc is the first place I look when I’m hunting for something unique, so let’s dig in!
Shall we start with my first 8 versions of the Elle pants, circa 2013-14? This was my first foray into pants making and it was the perfect basic pull-on pant. I did endless fitting adjustments, only to realise that my first version (far right) fit just as well as any other the others! Thanks when I learned that following a fitting rabbit hole aiming for perfection just isn’t my style…. and that not every online tutorial for “reading the folds” will lead me to the right adjustment.
Here’s a post that shows version 10, and links to version 9! I would honestly consider repurchasing this pattern again in my current size. Jean styles went skinnier after I sewed all these, but now this cut is popular again and I’m glad. The Elle pants don’t have pockets, but I also added patch pockets to hold my phone and distract from my VPL. Anyone else do that?
It seems like the next Style Arc pattern I blogged was the Ginger Twist Top in 2017. Maybe I sewed some other patterns in between, but I can’t remember! I know I owned and muslined at least one more. It is one of those blouses that looks like a wrap that folds under at the front. (The line drawing shows it better.) I never loved it on my, but it sits beautifully on my sisters figure and I ended up sewing her another as well. I made both in ITY knit.
I made a few versions of the Adeline dress in 2019, both for my sister. Turns out Style Arc is good for chic office wear! Both are made in heavy knits, although the pattern is meant for wovens. It is a really lovely pattern which I could see myself making again, but perhaps with a round neckline for myself.
Here is Anne, looking great and showing off how beautifully the back view cocoons at the bottom! I think this would be great in winter with a turtleneck underneath, if you like a layered look.
On to more recent makes in 2020 and 2021! Just before COVID hit I had this plan to sew something out of really beautiful fabric every month, and this was the second and final make in that project. Didn’t seem much point when I was just at home waiting for catastrophe, you know? It’s also when my regular blogging ended too.
Back to the dress though, which I love! This is the Lacey dress, which i chose to show off this panelled block print fabric. The pattern came out in 2018, but it’s still totally current with what I see people wearing today. The bodice centre panel is seamed onto the outer sleeve section, and the skirt is slightly gathered.
I absolutely ADORE this Toni Designer Dress, which makes me feel so confident. It’s just the right amount of weird to give the “hey I’m fun but odd” vibe that I aim for!
The collar deserves a close-up! It can be folded down or popped up like in the picture, and it’s a really unique neckline for a dress.
FInally, my most recent Style Arc project: the Hope dress! It is designed for a woven or a knit, although I swear they only marketed it for wovens at first. Mine is in a knit regardless! I will definitely sew this again this winter, perhaps with a few modifications. I’d love to make the bodice a bit snugger and shorter, and perhaps bring up the skirt hem a smidge too. In other words, make petite adjustments because I’m petite!
As is, I sewed in a rayon jersey and added elastic at the waist to give it some definition and stop the heavy fabric from pulling out of shape. I”m a sucker for batwing sleeves, and I like how this does the dramatic sleeve trend without puff sleeves that just don’t match my style. Style Arc is doing a focus on this pattern in September, so they’ve got some cool inspiration on Instagram!
There were have it: 8 years of Style Arc projects! I really thought I had sewn more different patterns, but I love the ones I have made. I find Style Arc comes out with some iconic designs that are easy to spot on other sewists, and I like that they’ve always gone up to size 30. Now I just wish they would show more of a range of bodies on their social media!
One thing I haven’t mentioned yet is the instructions. Like Jalie or older Big 4 patterns, they are short and to the point without any “wow, you did it!” encouragement. I find that totally fine for simple patterns like most I’ve sewn. I did have to read the collar instructions for the Toni dress a few times, but they worked out fine. If you’ve sewn the same kind of garment before, I don’t think the instructions will be a barrier.
Have you tried Style Arc? If not, have I persuaded you to give them a try? Writing this inspired me to pick up a few more patterns so those will hit the blog soon!
10 thoughts on “Style Arc: A Roundup!”
I love these trips down memory lane! I haven’t tried Styld Arc—definitely put off by the single-size patterns as it’s pretty rare that I don’t blend between sizes. Also having to re-buy a pattern because I changed sizes (which is part of why I’m such a pattern tracer 🤦🏻♀️)
I tried out the multi-size patterns for the first time this week, and I think I’ll stick to them in the future! It’s about $3 more, but much easier for fitting!
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Love the roundup! I WANT your block print Lacey! And Hope? Now that I’ve seen yours again I have to try it. I’m thinking DBP.
DBP would be so good for Hope! It’s a love cold-weather dress and I wore mine a lot last year!
Does the actual pattern give different yardages for the long and short versions? The online info is just one amount.
Oh interesting! I just see yardages by size: 2.5m is you are under size 16, 3m for the largest sizes. I do wonder if they have updated the pattern slightly though, because my version is called th “Hope Woven Dress” but now they say it is for knits or wovens.
Thanks. I was also thinking a maxi version might be nice, too. I’ll have to do some figuring once I get the pattern. Good to know that Stylearc has finally started offering multi size patterns.
I have quite a few Style Arc patterns. Some have been very good (Eden dress, Verity top ❤❤); others so so (Daphne tunic, Hedy dress-it’s huge in spots, but I like the dress so I’m determined to figure it out!). I’m not fussed about the lack of instruction for the most part. The important bits are there. Their ‘v-neck’ construction is 👌👍. I’m also glad they have the multi-size option now. That offers much more flexibility. Their website is a bit clunky and inconsistent (newer patterns contain much more info than older releases). Style Arc is a very good mix of current and trendy plus classic staples. They were the first indie/print at home patterns I tried. Free monthly patterns (w/ purchase) and the exchange to CAD dollar feels like getting a discount!
Great post thanks Gillian. I will rebook at the Elle pant now I’ve seen yours. I have made it up but wasn’t happy with the crotch curve but I need to take a leaf out of your book and just run with it. I have bought a lot of Style Arc patterns over the years and some work perfectly straight out with no alterations and some not so much. The Hope dress is perfect for me I’ve made 2 winter ones and am about to make a spring one out of linen. I probably really need to do fba adjustments for other tops (although I didn’t need this for the Hope dress). I think they draft for a B cup.
I’ve met the Style Arc women a few times now. They are three terrific women, growing their business very carefully, to the point that they can hire extra staff. Awesome! They do everything in-house – design, drafting, digitising, printing/folding/posting, sewing samples, photography and modelling. So the people you see are the owners and staff, and very likely their own children too.
They always answer emails, their instructions are certainly minimal (suits me) and the drafting is impeccable. Some of the designs are really not my cup of tea, others are totally spot on for me. I’ve made more trousers from them than any other pattern company.