New pattern tomorrow!


Just a quick reminder… tomorrow, we’ll have a brand new pattern for you for the summer!

I am super excited about all the possibilities for this one. Comfort, elegance, and ease all in one pretty package.

Check in again at 10AM Pacific for all the details!

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Weekend reading: body ethics, vintage pattern rage, and a great tip for decluttering


I’m in California this weekend celebrating my dad’s retirement (!) and getting ready for our next pattern launch on Tuesday. So between writing newsletters, making some new graphics for the shop, and writing blog posts, I’m going for runs on the beach with my sister, eating homemade pizza, and listening to loud Italian music.

Here are some links I’ve enjoyed over the last week. Enjoy!

  • I posted the photo above of some fabric from a vintage dress I tried on, and some commenters let me know that the artist is Harwood Steiger. I love his work!
  • Heather has vintage pattern rage. I must say, this kind of frustration is one of the main reasons I started Colette Patterns five years ago.

  • Maddie has 7 tips for sewing for long periods of time.

  • How not to say the wrong thing. If you’ve ever dealt with serious trauma (yours or someone else’s), this will probably resonate.

  • Rachel has a nifty cheat sheet on knit fabrics!

  • 10 tiny tasks to declutter your home. I don’t have much clutter in my home generally, but I do feel like these tips would be useful when doing a closet purge. I love the sticker idea!

  • The price of success is an interesting look at self-censorship. I don’t think one even needs to be “famous” in any way to feel the effects of an increasingly public life.

  • I really enjoyed this profile of Jen Gotch of and especially found her decision to sell her business really interesting to read about.

  • This article about a new body ethic comes from one of the best fitness blogs I’ve ever come across (actually, the only one I subscribe to right now). “The fitness industry fails because the choice at the center of all of its products is what to buy, not how to live. You get the reward—the personal pride, the release of social pressure, the assuagement of guilt—when you pay, not when you change.”

PS: If you enjoy the links I find, you may want to follow @colettepatterns on twitter. I post these links and more as I find/read them!

New pattern pre-sale starts Friday!


One more quick reminder, friends:

We’re offering a special discount and sneak peek for those who wish to pre-order the new upcoming pattern!

Secret details and the discount will be mailed out this Friday, so be sure to join the list before then for access:

Get first access

To get on the sneak peek list, enter your email below:

ETA: The preview has already gone out… check back Tuesday, July 15th for the official announcement!

You’ve gato make your own clothes when you run a half meowathon


When Kristen and I decided to run a half marathon together, we knew it would be the perfect opportunity to make our own running gear. And what’s better than handmade running gear?

Cat-themed handmade running gear.

The patterns

My top was made with the Fehr Trade XYT top pattern, which Melissa kindly let me try out. It was a lot of fun to make and I finished it in just a couple hours.

I made a couple minor adjustments, which are mainly a matter of preference and my general love of experimentation. I decided to finish the edges with fold over elastic, which makes the binding process very easy. I did the back X in black powermesh, just for fun.

I also did a little switcheroo in the order of sewing operations and left one shoulder seam open until the binding was installed, in order to avoid binding in the round. I’ll avoid binding in the round whenever I can, and with knits that’s pretty easy to do.



I went by the size chart to determine my size, which put me at an XS (I am usually a small or medium, fyi). The only issue I had with cutting this small size was that the bra lining was extremely tight, perhaps because I am a larger cup size.

As a busty runner, I usually avoid compression-style sports bras, so I think next time I might omit the lining and wear one of my favorite encapsulation-style sports bras underneath.


Kristen’s top was modeled after a tank top she already had, but her shorts were made from the Fehr Trade Duathalon shorts. Kristen cut them a little longer than the booty-shorts version.



Check out the gel pocket! Kristen even matched up the little kitty heads on it.

The Fabric

The fabric we used is from Spoonflower.

Spoonflower has a couple of options for performance fabric. The regular performance knit has moderate one-way stretch. The hand feels like you’d expect a poly jersey to feel. Not my favorite thing to touch, but it’s sort of what you’re used to if you wear athletic gear.

(If you missed it, here’s a more in depth look at why polyester is such a good choice for athletic apparel.)

I opted for the performance knit because I thought the smaller amount of stretch might help provide support. This turned out not to be necessary, but still the fabric worked out just fine! It performed well all 13 miles. The print I bought was this one called pussycat in summer coral by magentarose.

Kristen went for Spoonflower’s other performance fabric, the performance pique. This is a bit softer and much stretchier, very similar to the sorts of fabric I’m used to in serious athletic clothes. In the future, I’d go with this fabric for tops, for sure.

These fabrics aren’t cheap, but you don’t need much to make summer workout gear. I used much less than a yard.

The Race

I know that talking about running is super boring to non-runners, so I’ll just say that this race was a real beauty: flat, gorgeous, and perfect weather.

This was Kristen’s first half, and it was really fun to run together. We should make it a tradition. Every year, a different cat-themed outfit!


Weekend Reading: bias tape tips, breaks, and learning from failure


Just a quick roundup for you guys today, as Kristen and I are running a half marathon together this morning… in handmade and rather amusing activewear! I’ll be posting our finished garments on the blog next week, but if you want a sneak peek, I’m sure something will turn up on Instagram.

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