Looking Back, Plus Pattern Sale!

Four years ago, I decided to start my own pattern company. Can you believe it’s been four years since I put out my very first pattern?

Pendrell Blouse in blue!(sort of a dorky photo isn’t it? we’ve come a long way!)

It’s neat to see how far this little business has come. When I started, I’d just been laid off from my full-time job of nearly eight years. I wasn’t able to ease into it, or plan a transition from full-time employment to entrepreneurship in a smooth way. I had no idea what might happen in the years ahead, and I was afraid that I’d have no idea how to run a business. Starting off with fear as motivation was certainly one way to light a fire under me and stay focused!

I came across these old photos when my computer died earlier this year and I transferred old data to the new one. I thought I’d share some pictures of the very early days. The start-up stages of a business are often uncomfortable and bare-bones, and unless you have a lot of capital to get started, that’s how it has to be. Thankfully, it gets better. The great thing about starting small is that your risk is limited. And growing is fun, because you get to look back and see the changes.

Here’s the night my first pattern order arrived. I didn’t realize just how big it was going to be. This is only half of it, these boxes and more were stored in our kitchen for months! (Sorry, Mr. Sewaholic. Thanks for bearing with me!)

the first sewaholic pattern warehouse, my kitchen

The very first Pendrell Blouse pattern I ever assembled!

the very first sewaholic pattern

My ‘office’ – the dining room, only a foot away from the living room, that’s the couch right there. You can see how small our place is to be running a business off the dining table! This is where I packed orders, assembled patterns, sewed, blogged.

my office, warehouse, sewing station, etc, also the dining table

But look how happy I am! It’s really happening. I made a real sewing pattern and people are buying it.

i made a pattern!

Sitting on the dining table, packing patterns, in my pretty silk Pendrell blouse.

packing patterns

Why did I use such big envelopes to start with? I don’t know. Your orders ship in a more compact envelope now!

holiday pattern packing

It’s nice to look back and remember feeling so unsure of what might happen, but still excited to try. The indie pattern marketplace has sure changed a lot since I first started my pattern business. Now it seems there are ten times as many options out there, so I’m grateful that out of all the choices, people choose my patterns. There’s room for a range of pattern companies I believe. After all, if you sew, you usually shop at many different fabric stores and buy a variety of different pattern brands.

Thanks for all your support over the past four years! If you made it through that bit of nostalgia, here’s a reward.

We’re having a sale to celebrate four years in business!

From now until the end of the month, take 20% off your order! Enter the code FOURYEARS into the coupon code box at the bottom of your shopping cart.

All patterns are on sale, both printed patterns and PDF patterns, and so are our clothing labels, the Sewtionary book, and pink measuring tapes.

Click here to shop!

The fine print: Sale applies to regular retail orders through sewaholicpatterns.com. All sales are final. Sale discount cannot be applied to orders already in the system. Sales ends Sunday, November 30th at midnight.

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34 Responses to Looking Back, Plus Pattern Sale!

  1. Katie Schulz November 24, 2014 at 6:09 am #

    Congrats! It’s been so much fun watching your business grow. Thanks for sharing with us.

  2. Camilla November 24, 2014 at 7:26 am #

    What a lovely trip down memory lane. Having used established pattern companies when learning to sew it was a revelation to come across your patterns. I recently made a Hollyburn and the intructions were so clear and easy to follow compared to the Big 4. May your business continue to thrive and grow.

  3. Trudy Callan November 24, 2014 at 7:38 am #

    So nice to go back in time. I remember when you were first starting out. How exciting it was. Congratulations on four years!

  4. Amanda November 24, 2014 at 7:43 am #

    Congrats, Tasia and the Sewaholic team! I love seeing these photos of the early days and I’m so glad your business has flourished. It warmed up in New York today so I was able to bring out my Minoru jacket. It’s like I was celebrating your milestone without even realizing it!

  5. Trudy Callan November 24, 2014 at 8:01 am #

    Sew excited! I just orderd the Gabriola skirt! Thanks so much for the 20 percent off. I already own the Renfrew. They will look very nice together.

  6. Farhana November 24, 2014 at 8:05 am #

    Congrats on your first four years. I can so relate right now since I’m hoping to launch my first pattern (pdf) next month . Looking forward to see more in the future.

  7. Karina November 24, 2014 at 9:20 am #

    Congratulations for four years creating awesome patterns! Can’t wait for another 4 and more years to come :)

  8. lisa g November 24, 2014 at 10:07 am #

    congrats on four years! i believe your blog was about the first or second i came across, which opened up the whole world of sewing blogs to me. you have some the best patterns out there in the indie market. i wish you all the best in your business!

  9. Hélène November 24, 2014 at 10:33 am #

    Happy anniversary to you and you team! I agree with Lisa G, you’re one of the very best indie patterns makers. You developed your business cleverly through these years. Great, great job!

  10. Annette Tirette November 24, 2014 at 10:36 am #

    People choose your patterns because they know they’re getting great quality, at least that’s why I buy them!

  11. nothy November 24, 2014 at 10:39 am #

    Congratulations – your hard work has really been worth it.


    PS( I love the tan coat you’re wearing in the third photo from the end.)

  12. Barry St. Germaine November 24, 2014 at 11:06 am #

    Congratulations Tasia! Sewaholic has grown and become a great success in such a short period of time. You exude so much energy and passion which is why Sewaholic is what it is today!!

  13. Stina P November 24, 2014 at 11:17 am #

    Happy birthday to Sewaholic!

  14. Estelle November 24, 2014 at 11:21 am #

    I really enjoyed this post… It must be neat for you to also remember the excitement and energy from those first days. It is easy to forget where we are coming from.

  15. SylvieW November 24, 2014 at 11:31 am #

    Many congrats Tasia. I didn’t know you were laid off, and that Sewaholic grew from there. How amazingly exciting, and now look at your baby! Growing so fast :) I’ve only made the Gabriola so far, but do love your patterns!

  16. Anne Lyth November 24, 2014 at 2:29 pm #

    The sewing world would be a lot poorer without your patterns and your blog. I own several of your patterns and plan to own more. I like espesially that the instructions are so clearand easy to follow.

  17. Suzi November 24, 2014 at 3:05 pm #

    Congratulations Tasia – I started reading your blog around the same time you started your busness and to this day I still find what you do so inspirational! I also I can’t believe I’ve been following you for four years now and have purchased and made all bar two of your patterns and I still drop by the site everyday to see what’s new in the land of sewaholic. I can’t wait to see where the next four years takes you!

  18. Emma November 24, 2014 at 3:14 pm #

    Congratulations on four years! It’s been so lovely to see Sewaholic grow!

  19. Annette November 24, 2014 at 4:10 pm #

    Congratulations on the first 4 years, and here is to many more 4 years (so to speak!) Annette

  20. Maddie November 24, 2014 at 6:00 pm #

    Tasia, it’s so great to see how far you’ve come! I’ve only been a “sewing” blogger for 2 1/2 years and I have watched you become better, stronger and most importantly, even more fashionable (because you already were in the first place!). Keep up the good pace!

  21. Jo November 24, 2014 at 8:41 pm #

    Congrats, you sure have come a long way. I see Sewaholic going from strength to strength. Easily my favourite pattern company :D

  22. jqrd November 24, 2014 at 10:15 pm #

    Love your blog and love your patterns.
    I bought your book because of how well your patterns are constructed.
    Congratulations on the first 4 years.
    Here’s to many more :)

  23. Christy November 24, 2014 at 11:11 pm #

    I bought a Pendrell way back then. So great to watch your success. If I ever work through my queue, I’ll be buying the Gabriola next. Congratulations!!

  24. Winnie November 25, 2014 at 12:20 am #

    I started sewing around the same time you released the Lonsdale dress. I sewed it and couldn’t believe I made something like that myself. Your patterns are fab and I have made several versions of most of them. Go you! You should be proud.

  25. Martha November 25, 2014 at 7:03 am #

    Thanks for sharing those. Inspiring! And congratulations,

  26. Rose in SV November 25, 2014 at 7:32 am #

    congratulations! ii remember when you started! i wsh you more success and happiness!

    Rose in SV

  27. Mary November 25, 2014 at 1:37 pm #

    Congrats Tasia! In many ways, it seems like yesterday! Many, many more bright days ahead…..Someday I will get that snap of me IN my Renfrew shirt UNDER the Renfrew sign.

  28. Ann's Fashion Studio November 25, 2014 at 5:40 pm #


  29. nicki November 26, 2014 at 4:27 pm #

    I’m so pleased for you, you’ve come a long way and I have loved (and am still loving) reading all about it. Yours was one of the first indie pattern companies i came across and while i am not a pear shape (i wish!) It is still one i come back to time and again. Thanks for sharing.

  30. Amy November 26, 2014 at 7:40 pm #

    Happy birthday to you! I started reading your blog in the way beginnings–can’t believe it’s been that long. It’s been fun to follow your growing. Congrats!

  31. candie tancred November 28, 2014 at 6:36 pm #

    From Manly, Australia, I have followed your success since you started and I just love everything you do! Wishing you from across the waves every happiness and success. You have a great product and a lovely nature!! I always look forward to reading your blog when it arrives as an email.

  32. Kelly November 29, 2014 at 8:49 am #

    I can’t believe it’s been four years already! I still think of Sewaholic as a new company… so now I feel a bit old! You’ve done such a great job, and I’m really loving watching your company grow and change. I also love seeing your new designs and making some up!

  33. Trisha December 8, 2014 at 1:45 pm #

    Congratulations Tasia! It’s been so much fun to watch Sewaholic grow. You’ve done a great job with the patterns and the brand. Very impressed by you, lady!


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