I signed up to be a pattern tester for the lovely new pattern company Pipedreams, the brainchild of Joanne. I met Joanne last year at Edinburgh Frocktails when she travelled all the way down from Aberdeen. I’m so chuffed to find another Scottish company and jumped at the chance to pattern test.
It’s actually my first time pattern testing so I was very much learning the ropes. It feels like such a responsibility I really wanted to make sure I did it right – not just right but bloody amazing. It also feels really cool to see a pattern before anyone else. Like I’m a secret agent (I’d be rubbish I’d give away the codes in return for free fabric).
The pattern is called Inbhir Nis which meant nothing to me at first. Im not from a gaelic speaking family – I’m from southern Scotland where no one ever spoke Gaelic – we’re Scots speakers here. Anyway on reading the pattern it turns out Inbhir Nis means Inverness in Gaelic. As fate would have it my mother is from Inverness. So I declared it absolutely right and proper that I make this pattern up.
I got this sand coloured twill and navy lining fabric from Fabworks Mill who were awesome and gave us a discount. I wanted a lovely classic styled trench that would go with everything. Whilst I loved the wool and fake fur versions Joanne had made I wanted something for spring/summer so lighter weight.
The construction was really straight forward. I made a couple of changes to the pattern. The first was to omit the pockets from the cape and transfer them to the trench instead. I went for the big collar option but I was really tempted by the no collar option too. Or hack it into a Mandarin collar. The possibilities are huge!
The other change I made was to just bag out the trench. I couldn’t face hand stitching the lining in place. I’ve done it with a previous cape and lost the will to live.
The toile I made was out of v lightweight cotton so I thought the size was perfect for cinching in with the belt. In the end my fabric was a bit thicker and didn’t cinch so well. I could probably size down a bit next time but I still love it.
And here is the final result. We opted to use the Queen’s back garden in Holyrood park. That’s Holyrood Palace in the background. I’m sure she’d agree this is a badass trench cape that is perfect for flouncing in. I’m pretty sure her new grand daughter in law to be would like this style.
I’ve really enjoyed my first attempt at pattern testing. Joanne was really accessible when I had challenges with my narrow shoulders (always the freakishly narrow shoulders!). She was also hugely encouraging and supportive of fabric choices. She launched 3 patterns all at the same time (the crazy ambitious lady) and gave us pattern testers a lovely preview of the made up patterns which again made me feel like a secret agent.
So all in all I love the pattern and really loved being a pattern tester. The pattern is on sale now with a discount at only £7 here.