It seems like in the last year that there have been a crazy amount of children’s independant pattern companies popping up over the internet. Most of them just are not my style, so when I find one that strikes a cord with me I just have to share. I had never heard of the Cali Faye Collection until a week ago, so I was thinking that maybe most of you hadn’t heard of them before either. I was super excited when Sarah of Cali Faye agreed to not only do an interview, but also a giveaway for you all. I find her patterns to be modern, unique, and real standouts in the world of children’s patterns on the market.
So, here is a little more about Sarah and her pattern company Cali Faye Collection (and don’t forget to enter for a chance to win – details at the bottom of the entry):
Tell us a little about you and your family.
I have two children, two and five years old, one of which is Cali, which is the obvious influence behind the name Cali Faye Collection. Together, with my husband, we make up a spontaneous, loud, funny, emotionally charged, creative, and overly enthusiastic clan.
What is your design/sewing background and how did you get started with your business?
Once upon a time my grandmother handed me, at nearly 9 years old a needle and thread with two 2”x2” square scraps of fabric. I can’t tell you how many square scraps and minutes, hours, days or months I connected 2×2’s until I finished my first quilt. From that point, sewing, by hand or by machine became a very big part of my life.
Four years ago I started a children’s clothing line, like so many new mothers get inspired to do. Surprisingly, things were happening pretty quickly and I was in talks with major manufactures and distributers.
But, once my husband got a job offer which would take us on a grand adventure to spend a few years in Singapore, we decided that it was best if we put the clothing line on hold and take advantage of this huge opportunity we were being handed.
It didn’t take long for me to figure out that continuing with the clothing line from Singapore was pretty much impossible. For almost a year I hadn’t touched my sewing machine. Until one day I pulled out one of my old designs and decided that I needed to be a part of this community again. If I wasn’t going to be on a clothing line I wanted to at least help other women get theirs. Pattern design is the least I can contribute to this amazingly wonderful world of creativity.
Where do you get the inspiration for your designs?Inspiration comes from everywhere. My Simply Chic Dress came to me in a dream. I decided on my Racerback Flare Dress because I, myself, look freaking fabulous in anything racerback. The Haute Hippie Crop design was born out of the need to cover my daughters arms in the frigid temperatures of anything indoors, even though it’s in the low 90’s every day in Singapore. Most of the time though my it’s just me sitting around and sketching until something comes out on paper and I can make it work.
Give us an abbreviated version of how an idea progresses into an actual pattern for your store.
Once I have an idea it must be sketched out. The next part is the hardest. I mentally go through what it would take for this item to be made. There are so many aspects to a design that I take into account. I’m a pretty good seamstress, but will this be easy for everyone? Most people do not own a serger and a zig zag stitch isn’t always what its cracked up to be, so will this fall apart and frey? How can I hide the raw edges? The list goes on….
Afterwards, I work the math on each size…After all body measurements and clothing measurements are all built on ratios and comparisons.
At that point I prepare the pattern in one size, usually a size 5 or 6. I then build a rough draft of the garment. Sometimes I build 5…6….7…10 rough drafts to get it just right.
I then build the PDF versions of the pattern in all sizes and the tutorial. Then I start testing. On occasion I run through 5 or 6 of the sizes myself due to the insane amount of women I know with children. At times I’ve been known to enlist the help of my testers abroad. When I feel that it’s perfect I release it into the wild!
Which is your favorite of your designs and why?I love them all, but if I had to choose one, it might just be my latest pattern, the Del Ray Bolero. I am absolutely obsessed with little crop top cover ups. If I owed this in my size I’d never take it off.
Where do you see your business going in the future?
In the near future I will be working on opening my own webpage, as opposed to using Etsy as the main venue. I would love to offer freebies, and share what I know about the craft. Besides that I am going to come out with patterns as often as I can manage and for as long as I can!
Sarah has graciously offered to give one of you her newest pattern – the Del Ray Bolero. To enter to win just leave a comment on this post telling us your favorite Cali Faye Collection pattern. The contest closes at midnight Sunday night and the winner will be announced on Monday.
Thanks Sarah for doing this interview. Can’t wait to see what pattern comes next!