New to sponsoring Indie Pattern Month this year is Itch to Stitch. The patterns are all about the personal style of their designer, Kennis, and “not always easy to sew” with great details – we love a good challenge! Let’s find out more…
Mel caught up with Kennis, the designer behind Itch to Stitch…
Hi Kennis! Welcome to Indie Pattern Month!
First up, tell us all a bit about your designs. How would you describe your style/aesthetic?
Itch to Stitch is my personal sense of style – modern, timeless and elegant, yet comfortable and easy-to-wear for every day. Itch to Stitch’s patterns cater to sewists who appreciate quality and aspire to create a beautiful wardrobe that they are proud to wear. With all the detailed finishes, the garments created from Itch to Stitch’s patterns would look like they come from high-end boutiques.
How did your come up with the name for your label?
My husband came up with the name when I had a sewing blog. The name is fun and catchy. I didn’t keep blogging, but the name stuck. Since I still have the domain, I decided to use it for my pattern site.
We’d love to know the story behind your business. What inspired you to create and sell patterns? How did it all start?
I remember making clothes with some scrap fabrics by hand for my Barbies when I was 5 or 6 years old, and I started to learn to sew by machine (treadle) in school when I was 13. Since making my first garment (a baby dress), sewing has been my passion. I use many paper patterns and always made modifications here and there. Gradually, I learned about making flat patterns and draping, as well as creating digital patterns. At one point, I decided to quit Corporate America, and was doing some soul searching for my next career. I wanted to give pattern design a chance. I now get up every day and look forward to doing the work that I love.
Looking forwards, where would you like your business to be in five years time?
Five years is a long time these days; I really don’t know where life will take me! But I’d like to build a stronger brand for Itch to Stitch. I would like people to be able to buy Itch to Stitch’s patterns in many more places.
Where do you do all your work? We’d love to have a sneak peek at your workspace!
My husband and I live in Costa Rica; we are by the largest lake of the country. In fact, I can see the lake from the house. You might recognize the backdrops from some of my product photos! My office/studio is about 20 feet from my bedroom, which is quite convenient. My computer, sewing machines, ironing station, indoor photo studio and fabric storage are all in my office.
What’s your favourite part of releasing a new design?
It’s enormously satisfying to see my design on different ladies. Also, I work very sequentially, so when I release a pattern, I then get to work on another design!
Thinking of your gorgeous designs, what’s your favourite of all your designs so far, and why?
Who or what inspires you with your designs?
I am inspired by ready-to-wear collections. As mentioned, I really like the style of Marc by Marc Jacobs (the Kathryn Top and Dress was also inspired by the brand) but my end product turned out to be quite a bit different than the original inspiration). I frequently browse other brands like J Crew, Kate Spade, Anthropology and many others. I have a Pinterest board with some of my inspirations, so follow me there and you might see some elements on my future designs!