Interview with…. Barbara from Lekala!

Another one of our amazing sponsors for Indie Pattern Month 2014 is Lekala – a rather unique indie label which sells PDF patterns customised to your measurements.

They’re also a very generous sponsor, and have donated prizes to all for of the Indie Pattern Month sewing contests!

And not only that, but one of the Lekala crew, Barbara, is one of our amazing Monthly Stitch contributors. Chances are you’ve seen a few of her gorgeous creations popping up on the blog, such as this yellow dress, her Rockin The River dress, and this 70’s dress.

We caught up with Barbara to find out more about Lekala and her involvement with this cute indie label.

 

 

 

First up, tell us all a bit about your designs.  How would you describe your style/aesthetic?
Lekala has something for everyone. We have styles from formal to very casual. Every few days we add new styles to our extensive PDF pattern collections.

How did your come up with the name for your label?
Lekala in Russian means ‘Pattern”. 😉

We’d love to know the story behind your label.  What inspired you to create and sell patterns?  How did it all start?
Lekala sewing patterns are produced by Vilar Soft company, based in Moscow Russia. Vilar Software was founded in 1989 and specializes in developing software for retail and fashion industry. The leading product of the company is LEKO software. The online shop was opened in August 2012 with the aim of making professional sewing patterns available to the public. It is managed by Lekala LLC, based in San-Francisco, USA.

In 2012 we won Intel 2012 Award, the company is now working on recognizing one’s measurements by photo and is preparing to release customizable patterns for international market. 🙂

And looking forwards, where would you like your label to be in five years time?
Presently, the company is working on recognizing one’s measurements by photo and is preparing to release customizable patterns for the international market. I’ve been working for Lekala.co, as an assistant editor for the English translations since January 2014.

What’s your favourite aspect of the Lekala.co site?
I’m not only an editor, but an avid sewer, so for me my favourite part is the diversity of styles. If I have something in mind, I’ll most likely find what I want at Lekala.co. Once I choose a style, I can put in the measurements that I require and within minutes a PDF pattern, in that size, is created for me. A new feature, that I absolutely love, is that I can save personal measurements within the site, for myself and anyone I sew for. These measurements can be selected for the style you choose before checking out. They have several options for printing that should meet everyone’s needs. Printing large scale PDF’s is awesome! You don’t have to tape all the pages together. The site is constantly improving and offering great benefits to folks who sew.

Thinking of your gorgeous designs, what’s your favourite of all your designs so far, and why?
I’ve made a lot of Lekala styles, and blogged about them on my personal site: Zibergirl.com, but I’m going to have to say that the simple Bow Back stretch-knit top was one of my favorites, I made them for myself, daughters, and granddaughters. Everyone loved them!


Do you have any new patterns coming out soon?  Any hints you can give us?  (We’re so impatient, haha!)
Every few days we have new styles, so it’s worth visiting Lekala.co to see the latest.

Where do you do all your work?  Reckon you can share a photo or two with us, so we can have a sneak peek at your workspace?
Natalia, my boss, has an office in San Francisco, and in Russia. She travels between both countries, for business and family. There are two other employees, besides myself. They are located in San Francisco, but I live further north, in beautiful Mendocino County. I work from home and edit for Lekala.co through google docs.

Who or what inspires you, either with your designs or with your business?  (Or both!)
Natalia loves suggestions from our customers. Recently she asked customers to send us pictures of their favorite fashions through our Facebook page, so that we could include those styles in our pattern base.
Natalia is constantly working to improve the company, with more translations into other languages, more styles, and helpful site features for sewers. In the future, we’d like to host sew-alongs, and sewing contests. Personally, I am constantly inspired by so many designs to choose from and the very reasonable price of the patterns. Plus, the fact that they are made to fit your exact measurements!

What tips or advice would you give to someone who was wanting to start their own indie pattern label?
Sewing has always been my passion, and it wasn’t until I retired from teaching, that I had the time to really pursue it. Not only do I work for Lekala.co part time, but I also do custom sewing, alterterations, and give sewing lessons. My advice to others is to advertise, hand out your card, blog, and strive to make your customers happy!

Barbara, thank you so much for telling us more about Lekala! I must admit I hadn’t really heard of Lekala until recently, and I found it rather fascinating to learn more about it. 🙂

Lekala are also giving away a set of five made-to-fit PDF patterns to one lucky Monthly Stitch reader! Want to be in to win? Just comment below and tell us which two Lekala patterns you’d pick first if you won. You’ve got until midnight 1 July (UST) to enter.

This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to Annika, the winner!

28 thoughts on “Interview with…. Barbara from Lekala!

  1. I purchased Lekala Sewing pattern #152404 and cannot figure out how to put it together. Why can’t I get more step by step instructions? I sent an email and was told that they couldn’t help with my request.

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  2. Pingback: In case you missed it! | ZIBERGIRL SEWS

  3. Pingback: Lekala giveaway – who won?? | The Monthly Stitch

  4. Wow wow wow wow! Thankyou so much for introducing me to their website! Sooo many patterns and to select by fabric type too! And custom sized! Where have I been?!! I love the dress with shaped insets #4345 and the cutest bolero #5865 but I’m still looking 🙂

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  5. I’d love to know more about that amazing software.
    But I’d start with the dress with pleats (4324) and the sport style dress (5112). Thanks for the giveaway, Lekala!

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  6. It’s really hard to choose, they have so many! I’d probably pick Coat – Sewing Pattern #4333 or Dress With Shaped Inset – Sewing Pattern #4345.

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  7. It was great to find out about Barbara and her job. I recently found out about Lekala and made a blouson top which Barbara commented on! I was so proud! I have a wishlist on the site and would choose….7059 which my 14 year old is going to make as her Summer holiday challenge! And I would love to make 4280 which is a poncho with a scarf collar!

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  8. Pingback: Interview with…. Barbara from Lekala! | ZIBERGIRL SEWS

  9. From a quick look at the catalogue I fancied the Jacket From Knit Fabric – Sewing Pattern #4163 and the Jacket From Knit Fabric – Sewing Pattern #4163 (you can see that I am in a jacket-mojo at the momemt!), but there are many more interesting designs over there.

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  10. I’ve been eyeing the Lekala patterns via Barbara for a while now! How do you choose from such a catalogue? I would like to try the dress 4356, though and the pants pattern 5037, because having a start with the custom measurements might take some of the fear out of pants fitting.

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  11. Wow thanks for the information about this pattern line – I have made some of them up with great success. I’d love to make #4284 for me and everybody else in the family – it looks so good. Coat 2020 is pretty and on my wishlist. Thanks for the chance to win.

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  12. Oh dear, how to choose?!…
    I love the overall #5467, the sweatshirt #4011 and the hoodie #4341. I’m sure that I would have no trouble finding two more patterns! (:
    Thanks for the chance to win!

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  13. Lots of interesting patterns here but I think I’d have to go with 4341 Hoodie – because it looks casual and comfy and great for winter. And also the dress pattern 4356 (I like the shape of the skirt and the bodice detail). Best wishes.

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