Introducing Jennifer Lauren Handmade and the Hunter tank

We’re so pleased to welcome Jennifer Lauren Handmade back as a sponsor for Indie Pattern Month 2016! Jennifer designs beautiful patterns, often with a touch of vintage inspiration. Kat caught up with her to find out more about her brand and her latest pattern – the Hunter tank
Jennifer Lauren Handmade logo

Hi Jennifer! First up, tell us all a bit about your designs. How would you describe your style/aesthetic?

Hello! I design fun modern sewing patterns that give a nod to classic vintage attire, with beautiful detail and clean drafting for a gorgeous fit. Built on form-flattering basics using classic lines, each of my sewing patterns are easily adaptable for women of all shapes, sizes and skill level.

Enid sweater pattern by Jennifer Lauren Handmade

Enid sweater pattern

You’ve recently changed the name of your label. Can you tell us the story behind that?

I did! My original name was a bit of a leftover from when I first started blogging all of those years ago about vintage clothing. I still love vintage, but it’s not really a focus any more, though I definitely owe much of what I’m doing at the moment to that first online journal. The word ‘Vintage’ also has connotations towards a specific type of style, and while my patterns are certainly very at home on the vintage scene, I also think they work well in more modern settings.

Over time, my focus has naturally shifted as I’ve settled down and started a family – I love spending time creating things with my hands. So, apart from my main focus of sewing, Jennifer Lauren Handmade leaves me more room to talk about my other creative pursuits like gardening, baking, knitting and sharing a bit more about my own handmade life, the successes, the fails and my inspiration.

It also opens the door wide open to explore other possible aspects of my little business, whose seeds are currently being planted as we speak!

Dalloway dress and skirt pattern by Jennifer Lauren Handmade

Dalloway dress and skirt

We’d love to know the story behind your designs. Let’s talk about your latest pattern – the Hunter tank. What was the inspiration behind the Hunter pattern?

After having Oscar, my personal sewing time was very minimal. Summer was looming down here, I realised that I didn’t have anything in my wardrobe that was light weight, quick and that I could adjust as I was getting back to my pre-baby size.

I found myself lingering in my wardrobe one day trying to find something to wear over the top of a sundress I wanted to wear (maternity bras are far from beautiful…) and the idea came a-knockin’.

The Hunter Tank is a versatile wee pattern, you can wear it on its own with high waisted circle skirts for a vintage vibe, or with high waisted jeans for a bit more of a modern look. You can pop it over a swimsuit for a beach cover up or wear it over strappy dresses for a bit more coverage or for an evening look. It’s definitely a favourite of mine at the moment, it’s just too cold to wear it right now!

Hunter tank pattern by Jennifer Lauren Handmade

Hunter tank

Where did the name come from?

I keep meaning to write a blog post about how I come up with the names for all of my patterns, but haven’t gotten around to it yet. I can’t quite remember why I do it this way, but, there you go 🙂

To start, I’m actually working my way through the alphabet! By the time Hunter was ready, H was next on the list (I know, there is no G yet – it’s had several reincarnations but is finally in it’s final development stage. Hunter was ready first, so it was released earlier). The name also has to have something to do with books or literature. Whether it be an authors name, a character, a location, a shop, a title, anything at all.

Hunter came from ‘The Mystery of Hunter’s Lodge’ which is an Agatha Christie Poirot short story. I love Poirot so much in fact that the Felicity Dress is actually named after Miss Felicity Lemon, Poirot’s trusty assistant.

Hunter tank pattern by Jennifer Lauren Handmade

Hunter tank

Do you have many Hunter tanks in your own wardrobe? Which is your favourite?

I do! I wore them all summer tweaking as I went before the final pattern was released in autumn (down in the Southern Hemisphere). My new favourite Hunter is one I’ve just finished stitching up for some tutorials I’m writing – it’s made from a beautiful soft blue floral cotton lawn. Winter has just started here though, so I won’t be able to wear it for a little while unfortunately 😦

Even though it’s just been released, we’ve already seen some lovely Hunters that people have made! Do you have a favourite that you’ve seen someone make up?

It’s hard to pick just one! i have to say though, that my testers are always amazing me with their skills and creativeness. I’ve seen some amazing versions that haven’t been blogged yet, hopefully they’ll pop up soon 🙂

Hunter tank by Handmade by Carolyn

Hunter tank by Handmade by Carolyn

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

Of course 🙂 I’m always slowly working away on something these days. I’ll actually be releasing 2 patterns at once this time around, something I’ve never done before. You can wear them together or you can wear them apart – think layers, wink wink.

Thank you so much for chatting with us Jennifer, and telling us the story behind Hunter! It’s such a cute pattern – I’m looking forward to trying it out when it gets warm enough down in the Southern Hemisphere again. 🙂

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