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.
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!