I can say with confidence that Denver Startup Week has probably never hosted another dress form startup. But against the odds, Beatrice made a rare appearance at the Physical Product Showcase representing the latest in sewing tech alongside the IoT dog collars and food startups. Nate and I got a kick out of seeing attendees light up when they finally wrapped their heads around what we do!
Last month, I spent a weekend in Denver at Fancy Tiger Crafts sewing jeans with 12 other sewing obsessed ladies. Even though I’m not new to jeans construction, sewing a finished pair of jeans from cutting to wearing is a tall order for me in 2 and a 1/2 days. There’s no time to agonize over pocket placement or a wonky topstitch. You have to just let go and sew. And really, that’s what makes it so much fun!
Gathered around a table covered with neatly folded sample jeans in every size, our instructor Lauren (of Lladybird fame) began the workshop with a little goal setting for the weekend. Yes, we were going to learn her hard-won jeans construction tricks she’s developed over the years. But, this class was not about sewing a perfect pair of jeans. It was about proudly walking out the door in a completed pair of handmade jeans and feeling great about it.
Reflecting back on that crazy weekend, Lauren had it spot on. Whether you’re taking a multi-day class at a local fabric shop or flying halfway across the planet for a multi-week retreat, the reason we take these workshops is almost never about achieving sewing perfection. When I asked my sewist friends about their “why”, this is what they told me.
In the market for a dress form? The choices can be a bit overwhelming! As you might have noticed, there’s not a lot of up-to-date info out there to help prospective dress form buyers. My hope is that after reading this article, you’ll feel prepared to buy (or not buy) with confidence!
Tell me this hasn’t happened to you: you’re cruising along on your project, maybe cutting out fabric with your rotary cutters – then you hit the end of the cutting mat and need your shears… hmmm, where did you last set those down?? Maybe they are over by your machine? Nope. Ugh.
My big problem is with rulers, absentmindedly putting them down in random places when I’m in “the zone”. Where’s my french curve? Ah, found the big aluminum hip curve but what I really need is the small clear one! The pains.
I think I’ve found the perfect DIY solution: a rolling, vertical tools caddy! To be fair, this was not my idea. I stole it from my awesome father in-law who built one for his workshop and was lovely enough to make me one just like his.
Since then, I’ve figured out how to build them on my own in an afternoon – let me show you how!
I can’t believe it but we are almost done with our Early Supporter Program! We have 4 shipping out Monday and just one more form to cut this week. I thought it might be a good time to reflect.
Learning by doing
When starting anything new, including starting a business, you can only really learn by doing the darn thing. As much as we’d like to think that we can imagine what it’s going to be like, there will always be surprises and some failures – which I prefer to frame as “learning”.
So what did we learn? A lot, thanks to all the incredibly patient and generous sewists out there that took a chance on us. Here are the big take-aways: