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Calling Curvy Seamstresses - JLH is Hiring!

Friday, February 14, 2020

Hello Sewing Ladies!

I have a bit of an announcement to make...

I have been working towards adding a new range of sizes to my patterns - it's something I've been wanting to do for a while, and now that Rowy is a little older (she turned one yesterday!), I feel like I have the space, and tiny bit of extra time, to get this next stage in motion.

So, I'm looking for a Curvy Fit model.

I live in a small-ish city down here in NZ, and am finding it extremely difficult to find a proper curvy fit model - one that is actually curvy and not what agencies are telling me a curvy model is. This is where you come in...

This will be a paid contractual position that will be ongoing. Using a curvy seamstress just seems to make the best sense for me at this stage, since you're the ones who will be using and making my patterns.

I want these to be the best curvy patterns I can make, I want them to fit well and flatter as well as be user-friendly to sewists. I don't want to just add token sizes, I really really want these to be good.

What is a Fit Model? It's basically someone who takes an initial pattern for a style, fits it to their body and provides the details of any adjustments that need implementing back to the designer, so that a consistent fit can be gained across the brand and all styles within that brand.

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You will need to be a relatively advanced seamstress for this position, as you will be providing specific fit alteration feedback. You will need to be able to be objective and not necessarily let personal taste get in the way of making sure the fit of a garment is as intended.

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As much as I'd love someone in my time-zone (I'm in New Zealand, and Skype or FaceTime chats will be part of the job description) getting the right model is more important, so, you can be anywhere in the world! Oh the joys of the internet.

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I've included a table below for my JLH Curve sizes - there is a slight overlap from my current size range, but I'm not including A or B cups in the Curve range, instead I'm adding on an E cup. Depending on demand, adding an F cup could also be a possibility.

I'm after a mid-range fit model, someone who hopefully fits into the 22-24-26-28 D (or E) cup range, BUT, if you fall outside of this and still really want to apply, please do. Your experience and expertise as a curvy sewist is just as important here as fitting into that mid-range.

What I do need though is someone who doesn't tend to need to make too many extra adjustments to their patterns AND fits across one of my sizes in a relatively standard manner - which I know is a very hard thing to speciy, since there are such limited options for you at the moment. So, I'll let you make a judgement call on that for yourself.

Sizing up or down one step in either the waist or hips can be worked around if you're successful.

To work out your cup size: find the difference bewteen your High Bust and Full Bust measurements. A difference of 5cm (2") is a C Cup, 7.5cm (3") a D cup and 10cm (4") an E cup.

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I'd love it if you could let any and all of your curvy sewing friends know about this. It's the next major step in getting a great curvy pattern line up and running.

I will have a separate Curvy Tester database too, and will let you know when I'm ready for sign ups to that.

If you'd like to find out more, want to see the Job Description or want details on how to apply, just send me an email: 

jen at jenniferlaurenhandmade dot com

Thank you for your help, I'm really excited to get going on this!


The Vielle Top - Free Gathered Sleeve Pattern + Tutorial

Monday, December 30, 2019

It's nearly the end of 2019 and as a little thank you for all of your support this year here's a little free pattern for you.

Add a delicately gathered sleeve — and another point of difference — to your Vielle Top! With this free Gathered Sleeve Cap pattern you'll take your Vielle from a simple everyday t-shirt to a dressy top in no time. 

Download your free pattern and follow the instructions below.

You'll need:

Make up your Vielle Top as per your included instructions until you get to the section called 'Inserting Sleeves' -
use the instructions below in place of these.


1. Take your main Vielle Sleeve pattern and draw a line straight across, meeting at the corners where the sleeve cap meets the length of the sleeve.

2. Take your free sleeve cap pattern, cut it out and right side facing up, line it up with the line you drew above.

3. Tape in place permanently onto your original sleeve. When you want a plain sleeve cap, simply fold that pattern piece down, and when you want a gathered sleeve cap, flip it back up again.

4. Take the new bodice shoulder patterns and match up the corners and bottom notches. Then either tape them permanently onto your original pattern piece, or simply transfer the additional notches (D & E) onto your main pattern piece. 

The curves of the bodice armscye do not change, so transferring the additional notches is fine.

5. Place a line of basting stitch within the 1cm seam allowance, around the sleeve cap from notches D to E, leaving long tails (you may wish to do a second line of backing stitch for extra security).

Pull basting stitch tails through to the wrong side.

6. Right sides together, match the top sleeve head notch to your shoulder seam, pin in place. Match remaining notches along the armscye (including corresponding notches D & E noted on the pattern pieces).

7. Gently pull basting stitches on the sleeve cap until the sleeve fits into the armscye. Distribute gathers evenly between notches D & E and pin in place. 

8. Stitch in place starting from one side all the way around. Do this slowly and gently, without stretching the armhole.

9. Trim off excess seam allowance around armscye, finish raw edges and repeat for the other side.

10. Continue making your Vielle Top as per your included instructions.

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A Holiday Break + Shipping Dates

Thursday, December 19, 2019

It's nearly that time of year again - which means I'm going to be taking a little break from processing paper pattern orders.

From 5pm Friday 20th December NZDT, any paper pattern orders will be processed when I get back on Tuesday 7th January NZDT.

So while you can still shop all patterns during this time (paper + digital), if you purchase a paper pattern, it will not be processed and sent until the second week of January.

I hope this doesn't throw the spanner into too many of your sewing plans, but the new year will be here before you know it...

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New Pattern Alert! The Vielle Top... + Quincy now in paper.

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

With its flattering scoop neckline and side-tie detail, Vielle is the quintessential knit tee turned into a standout wardrobe staple.

The Details

Vielle is a classic fitted knit top with a twist - its gorgeous side-tie neckline details lends a feeling of effortless chic to your outfit and is deceptively easy to make.

Three sleeve lengths will see you through all the seasons in comfort and style.

Made with stretch knits, Vielle is a little bit 40s-esque with a retro vibe, all mixed in with lovely details. Vielle is sure to become your go-to when you need something classy yet comfortable and quick.

 Skill Level

Vielle is a great introduction to knits if you're new to them, and if you're a seasoned pro, you'll more than likely be wearing a new top after just one sewing session.

The Vielle Top is designed for confident beginners through to advanced seamstresses.

Fabric Options

Look for lightweight knit fabrics with good stretch across the grain. Knits should have 40% stretch with good recovery.

The Vielle Top was drafted using a 95% cotton 5% lycra spandex knit with a weight of 180GSM (grams per square metre).

The Vielle instructions contain more detailed information on suitable knit fabric requirements.

Tutorial - How to tie the perfect knot!

There are several tutorials planned for the next few weeks, but in the mean time, if you're needing to know how to tie the perfect Vielle side-knot, then look no further. It's easier than you think!

Available in Paper Format - Shipped direct from the UK!

You can choose between a paper OR digital version of the Vielle Top.

All paper patterns will now also be shipping direct from the UK - you can estimate your shipping costs at the check out, and in many cases, it is now less expensive than it was. Please see my updated shipping policies here.

New-to-Paper: The Quincy Dress

Yes, the Quincy Dress is now also available in paper format. Please see my updated shipping policies for new-to-paper as these will now be sent direct from the UK.

Purchase Vielle + Quincy!

You can purchase your digital or paper Vielle Top here...

and why not add on a paper Quincy Dress pattern too?

You can also find Vielle and Quincy at your favourite retailers here.

Make sure you tag me on Instagram or use the hashtag #VielleTop + #QuincyDress so I can see and share your makes.


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The Vielle Top - New Pattern Coming Soon!

Monday, November 25, 2019

YES - a new pattern's on the way!

The Vielle Top is the quintessential knit tee turned into a standout wardrobe staple, a little bit 40's with a retro vibe, it'll be landing on Wednesday next week. BUT, if you sign up to my newsletter,  you'll not only get to see it before anyone else, you'll also get access to the subscriber-only discount.

And, I'm excited to announce that Vielle will be available in both digital and paper format, can't wait to share more...


PS) Make sure you sign up on or before 8pm Monday 2nd December NZDT, otherwise you'll miss out.

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New Pattern Alert - The Trixie Briefs!

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

The Trixie Briefs have a higher rise at the back and full bum coverage - they're star-jump proof and the ultimate in everyday comfort, all while being a quick and satisfying make.

The Details

With classic or panelled options, you can make Trixie in your choice of a modern hipster brief or a 50s-inspired true high-wasted style (sitting above your belly button, at your natural waist).

It's time to get adventurous with those knit fabric scraps, mixing and matching to your heart's content. Instructions are included for finishing with fold over elastic (FOE) as well as lingerie elastic, making for a total of 8 different variations all within one pattern.

Based on the popular Nixie Briefs silhouette, Trixie is like a warm, comforting (and comfortable!) hug for your bum. Your all-day, every-day brief.

The high-waist style are perfect for pairing with fit'n'flare dresses and high waisted skirts and pants. As they sit at the true waist, they would also make the perfect 50s bikini bottom when made up in a swim lycra as well as the perfect lounge pant paired with a cropped lacy dressing gown.

Skill Level

If the overlapping curves of Nixie had you a little worried, Trixie will set your mind at ease.

Designed for Confident Beginners, the Trixie Briefs are the perfect introduction to knits and elastic sewing. They're small and quick, which means you can cut multiple pairs at one time, then build your knowledge and confidence with each pair made.

Fabric Options

The Trixie Briefs should be made with stable knit fabrics that have a good amount of stretch across the grain.  A minimum of 30% stretch is recommended for best results as Trixie has built-in negative ease (i.e., they're smaller than your actual measurements). A fabric with 4-way stretch is the best choice for maximum comfort.

Cotton/lycra (spandex/elastane) combinations work well for light-weight, breathable briefs, but other options include stretch lace/mesh, power mesh etc. Trixie is also the perfect bikini bottom when made up in swim lycra.

The Trixie Briefs were drafted using a 95% cotton 5% lycra spandex knit with a weight of 180GSM (grams per square metre).

I recommend using a breathable natural fabric like stretch cotton or bamboo for the gusset.

The Nixie+Trixie Bundle

Why not get the best of both worlds and combine your love for unique, comfortable, full bum coverage undie by purchasing both Trixie and Nixie in one go?

The Nixie+Trixie Bundle is just that, your two favourite brief patterns all under one roof. Usually $20USD when purchased separately, you'll get both for just $18USD.

Update your undie drawer safe in the knowledge that plumber's crack, hungry bum and drab undies are a thing of the past.


Trixie is available in digital format only. Links to your pattern will be emailed directly to you.

I'd love to hear how you're getting along making your Trixie Briefs, so why not tag me on Instagram or use the hashtag #JLHTrixieBriefs so I can see and share your makes.

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New Pattern Coming Soon - The Trixie Briefs

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

It's been been a while!

I'm very much looking forward to releasing my first brand spanking new pattern since I launched my Sorrel Dress Kickstarter campaign nearly a year ago now. So much has happened since then, most notably, the arrival of this little lady...  So, I'm gently dipping my toes back in with this one, before we ramp up to lots of lovely new things in the coming months.

The Trixie Briefs are based around the same silhouette as the Nixie Briefs (um, hello full bum coverage!), they include hipster and true high waist variations in both a classic or panelled brief look. They're great for scrap busting, and if the overlap of Nixie had you a little worried, Trixie will put you at ease.

Make sure you sign up to the newsletter before 8pm Monday 7th October (NZDT) to be the first to see Trixie, as well as get access to the Subscriber-only discount.

Catch you next week...

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* Trixie will be available in digital-format only.

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