ask me: women’s patterns

It’s been a while since our last ask me post! This week I thought I’d focus on some of your questions about our women’s pattern lines: both the Lisette collection and our newer Liesl + Co. patterns.


Ask Me


I have noticed that the quality of the Lisette fabric is better than most other Jo-Ann fabric.  While you design the patterns and color ways, do you also have a say in the quality of the fabric?

As a matter of fact, yes! I can happily say that I do have quite a bit of say in the quality of the fabrics we produce for the Lisette collections. I spend a lot of time evaluating and sourcing different fabrics and looking for new ideas. I know there are a lot of fans of our sateen, twill, and lawn, and we just added a really great chambray to the spring collection. I’m really excited about it and hope to do a lot more with that fabric. We also added a fantastic voile, which, if you look closely at it, you’ll see that it’s a twill weave. That gives it a really nice hand and drape, and I think it will be a great quality for spring and summer blouses, or even for lined dresses.

Will you be doing more women’s patterns?

Absolutely! We were very pleasantly surprised at the reception to our first Liesl + Co. collection, and we’re working on some new styles for 2014. You’ll be seeing many more women’s patterns from us in the future, including styles with a variety of different silhouettes and difficulty levels. This is something I have wanted to do for quite a while, so I’m really excited about this direction.

We also have a new Lisette pattern that will be coming out in mid-February, so stay tuned for that! (Sorry, we’re not allowed to show sneak peaks before the release date.) The dress is really cute and versatile, and I’m sewing the jacket for myself right now and really love it.

Who are some of your favorite artists? I’m thinking of photographers, painters, sculptors — but if who comes to mind is a musician or designer or architect I’d love to hear about that too.

Oh, there are so many! Did you know that Todd is a docent at the Whitney Museum on weekends? If’ you’re ever in New York at 12:30 on a Sunday there’s a good chance you can catch one of his tours. (He’d love to have you join him, and he’s really interesting.) So we spend a lot of time looking at and talking about art, and the more I learn about each artist and his or her process, background, and inspiration the more I enjoy the art. Some of my favorite artists right now are Joan Mitchell, Agnes Martin, Charles LeDray, Lee Bontecou, and Doris Salcedo.



Charles LeDray



Joan Mitchell


We also collect art, and we’ve gradually invested in pieces by artists such as Sean Scully, Glenn Ligon, Collier Schorr, Loretta Lux, and Robert Lazzarini. All three of us really enjoy living with art. In fact, every year for her birthday, S gets to pick a small piece of art for herself. For the past few years she’s selected portraits of animals by Sharon Montrose. With her ninth birthday coming up soon, we’ve been talking about what she’d like to get this year.





  1. Helena

    Wowzers, that’s a select and valuable collection! I am already coveting your Loretta Lux.

  2. Melanie

    Thanks for sharing! This is all really interesting to learn about. I’m off to look up more about Joan Mitchell! And I will be waiting to see the new Lisette pattern. I could really use a good spring jacket this year.

  3. I love these little peaks into your life and designing. Such fun! I look forward to seeing the new pattern releases. Taking advantage of your sale, I just bought the Late Lunch Tunic for myself and hope to give it a try sometime soon!

  4. Masha

    She’s right, the quality of the Lisette fabrics is really much better than everything else at Joann’s – in fact, Lisette is the only fabric range I will buy there anymore! I ordered some of the chambray a couple weeks ago and am anxiously waiting for it to arrive (DPO takes awhile). It may become a new Late Lunch tunic 🙂

  5. a lisette pattern was the very first successful garment i sewed when I got into sewing a year ago. love that it is still continuing and that there are liesl + co patterns available too. also love reading your blog!

  6. Ybat

    This past Christmas I got a gift certificate for Joanns from my brother. After doing some browsing on their website I knew that I was going to buy some striped linen. So with coupon and certificate in hand I went and instead of linen I left with more than 2 yards of your beautiful polka dot chambray. I just couldn’t resist and I cant wait to make a dress using one of your lisette patterns.

  7. Jenny

    I have a follow up question. Have these artists or other artists influenced/inspired your work and how?

  8. Marcy

    I have a question for you if you do another “ask me” post: I’d love to know what you do with the clothes you’ve sewn for yourself or your daughter that have been worn out or grown out of. I know you can’t have much storage space living in NYC, so do you give clothes away that you’ve made or do you keep them? Personally, I find it very hard to let go of any clothes I’ve made, even the oldest pajamas that are totally worn out! I’d love to hear your thoughts. Thank you!

  9. Sarvi

    I love this series. So interesting to get a behind-the-scenes peek. Lee Bontecou is the only one of these artists whose work I knew, love her. I will keep an eye out for the others!

  10. Lynda

    Oh I do hope your chambray comes to Spotlight in Australia with your other fabrics, limited fabric selection is hampering me moving on from my learn-to-sew projects for my GD to sewing for myself. Spotlight is my only fabric choice, my monitor is very unreliable colour-wise for online purchases

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