Swoon Sewing Patterns’ Designer Alicia Wietholter Interview



Swoon Sewing PatternsToday we hear from Alicia Wietholter of Swoon Sewing Patterns who shares with us what inspires her designs, her favorite patterns, trends, and sewing supplies!

Inspiration:

Q:  What or who do you think inspired you to want to become a bag pattern designer?

A:  I have been a graphic designer for half my life. I’d been sewing paper patterns for a number of years when I had an idea for my own pattern. I designed it, listed it for free, and it was downloaded 2,000 times overnight. Now here I am two years later.

Q:  What typically inspires the bag patterns you design?

A:  I like simplicity, something stylish for the beginner but easily modifiable for the advanced sewist. And I like my bags to look store-bought, not homemade.

Q:  Most inspiring fabric line or fabric print ever?

A:  I am a big fan of anything by Sarah Watts and Joel Dewberry.

Favorites:

Q:  Your favorite bag pattern that you designed?

glenda purse sewing pattern by swoon

the Glenda Convertible Clutch

A:  It changes all the time but it’s currently the Glenda Convertible Clutch.

Q:  Your favorite bag pattern someone else designed?

A:  I’d have to say the Necessary Clutch Wallet by Emmaline Bags. It’s perfect.

Q:  Do you have a bag style or trend that you either really love, or really don’t love?

A:  I love love love vintage bags with short handles, but they aren’t very practical. I’m in the minority here, but I don’t love hipsters.

In the sewing room:

Q:  What do you typically like to use for lining?

A:  I generally use Kona solids for lining. Boring, I know.

Q:  What do you typically like to use for shape and stiffness?

A:  It depends on the bag, but I love a Craft-fuse 808 / Thermolam Plus combination. Stiff enough to stand up on its own and the fleece takes away the crinkles of the Craft-fuse.

Q:  Best sewing notion for bag-making?

A:  Antique brass hardware.

Q:  What types of hardware do your bag patterns typically feature?

A:  Rectangle loops, swivel clips, sometimes d-rings. I usually get them all from strapworks.com. Super speedy shipping.

All business:

Q:  What are your brief thoughts on sewers selling bags made using one of your patterns?

A:  Sell away! The sewer put a lot of work into making that bag, who am I to say what they can and can’t do with it.

the Glenda Convertible Clutch

the Glenda Convertible Clutch

Q:  Your most recent pattern released?

A:  Swoon Glenda Convertible Clutch

Q:  When do you expect to release a new pattern?

A:  I release a new pattern monthly.

Q:  What is a typical work day like for you?

A:  A little sewing, a lotta Facebooking.

Q:  Best thing about being a bag pattern designer?

A:  The awesome ladies I chat with on a daily basis in the Swoon Facebook Group, and my ultra talented testers who have become great friends!

Thank you Alicia!  Your insights and tips will be very helpful to so many of us.  We will all stay tuned to see what Swoon offers next!


Pellon® 808 Craft Fuse®

Elizabeth Dackson of Don’t Call Me Betsy shares a quick demo for Pellon® 808 Craft-Fuse®. Craft-Fuse® is a fast and easy-to-use non-woven, fusible fabric backing that adds strength and body. It is excellent for home décor projects, apparel accessories and bags. For areas that require extra rigidity, use two layers. It is completely sewing machine safe and won’t gum up your needle.”


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