Introducing the Mortmain dress by Gather

Caroline and Sandra, the talented ladies behind Gather, were one of our Indie Pattern Month sponsors last year, and we’re delighted to welcome them back as sponsors again this year too!

Last year, we interviewed them about their label, their business, and their inspiration for both. This year, we got in touch to ask them a bunch of questions about their most famous pattern – the Mortmain dress.

Hi Sandra and Caroline! Welcome back to Indie Pattern Month! First up, tell us all a bit about your designs. How would you describe your style/aesthetic?

Our designs are simple but chic – classic wardrobe staples that are easily customisable. Our personal style is actually wildly different to each other – Sandra loves feminine, flirty dresses with a firm nod to the past. Always beautifully put together, she’ll not be seen in jeans! Caroline wears a more modern style, pairing her faithful skinnies with an extensive shoe collection that mostly now consists of high top sneakers! Somehow we seem to always agree on what we want from our patterns and our brand – we both love simple, clean lines in design.

How did your come up with the name for your label?

We spent an evening brainstorming over a glass of wine! We wanted a name that referenced sewing without being too obvious but was also easy to remember (and spell!). Gather just seemed to fit the bill. One of the most fun parts of what we do is gathering together all of the materials for our sewing kits, and we really liked the way our name reflected that.

We both love a good book and the names of our patterns all reference characters from our favourite novels. We recently held a competition to see if people could guess the books that our patterns are named after. We were thrilled that so many people knew the answers and loved the same stories as us!

The rose garden Buchanan robe sewing kits

We’d love to know the story behind your designs. Let’s talk about the Mortmain dress today. What was the inspiration behind the Mortmain pattern?

We wanted our first dress pattern to be a solid wardrobe staple, so we designed a classic fit and flare shape which is flattering to lots of different body types. We took inspiration from a number of places, pieces that are within our wardrobe and shapes that we’d seen on the catwalk and added a couple of bespoke design features such as the exposed zip and fitted cuffed sleeve.

Kick-ass Mortmain dress by Inge Maakt

Kick-ass Mortmain dress by Inge Maakt


Where did the name come from?

We both love classic novels and one of our favourites is I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith. Cassandra Mortmain is a heroine!

Do you have many Mortmain dresses in your own wardrobe? Which is your favourite?

Loads! We sampled The Mortmain in a number of different fabrics and so we both have a few that we wear on a daily basis. The Liberty art fabric dress that is featured on our site is Sandra’s favourite, and Caroline has a couple of hacked Mortmain skirts.

We’ve seen so many lovely ones that people have made! Do you have a favourite that you’ve seen someone make up?

We have a few! Dolly Clackett was on of the first bloggers to make The Mortmain, and hers is a typically quirky version. We also love Inge’s ‘Kick Ass’ dress and Mary’s beautiful colour-blocked Mortmain is another favourite, but we really love seeing everyone’s versions!

Ms. Tree Mortmain by Dolly Clackett

Ms. Tree Mortmain by Dolly Clackett


Do you have any new patterns coming out soon? Any hints you can give us? (We’re so impatient, haha!)

Yes! We’re hard at work on our fourth pattern and it’s a really versatile garment with chic design lines and lovely details that make it really special! This one’s not aimed at absolute beginners like our other patterns, so we’re still working hard to create really detailed instructions so that it’s accessible.

Floral Mortmain by Nikki's Stitches

Floral Mortmain by Nikki’s Stitches


Thanks so much for telling us more about the Mortmain dress! Such a gorgeous design. 🙂 If you’d like to see more Mortmain dresses, the lovely Gather ladies have collected a bunch on them on the Mortmain Pinterest board.

Plus, Gather have given us a special Indie Pattern Month discount, just for you! You can get 15% off everything on their site (including the gorgeous sewing kits) with the code INDIE15. Be in quick – it expires on 15 June!

2 thoughts on “Introducing the Mortmain dress by Gather

  1. I never connected that it was named after Cassandra Mortmain from I Capture the Castle. It’s one of my favourite books! Perhaps I should take advantage of that sale… 😉


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