First of all, I decided to try some Mamu Designs patterns. I bought Nike and Arabella from Dotsnstripes on Etsy. I chose the Arabella and Nike patterns. They both arrived from the UK quite quickly! Faster than my fabric.com order! (laughing) I was so pleased to see each one has 20+ design options in just one pattern, plus numerous sizes! Considering the cost, that makes it worthwhile.
Nike looks to be a very useful pattern from which one can make numerous skirts, tops, and dresses. I love that the pattern can work with woven fabrics or knits and there are short sleeve, long sleeve, and no sleeve options, plus long and short skirts. Very useful!
Arabella made me swoon! The choices! Long and short ruffly dresses and tops. 28 variations. Plus, and wait for it........ doll patterns! What could be better. And, again, each design can be made with knits or wovens.
Mamu Designs are made in Germany but each pattern comes with English directions as well as a pattern map for tracing whatever size pattern you need.
Next up, new Ottobre! I love Ottobre. Such a wonderful resource. If you have never bought one, here is some information about them. Ottobre is a pattern magazine designed in Finland. You can order a subscription from them directly and pay via payal. You get a free issue when you do. They make four children's magazines a year and two women's collections. Each magazine comes with many patterns. The current Fall 2012 children's issue has 40 patterns in it, for boys and girls, babies up to tweens, each one in a variety of sizes. So, for about $15 an issue, you get a lot! You cannot sell the items you make from them (long story) but you can make a great deal of clothing for your children and grandchildren. Since they are ahead of the fashion styles in Europe, compared to us in the USA, I still sew from older Ottobres. In fact, my favorite year is 2006!
Here are some details. This is the new issue:
You get a nice thick magazine with glossy pictures in inside, full of multiple photos for each pattern. There are 5-10 patterns each for babies, girls, and boys, and tweens.
This is a diagram of each pattern included in this issue. Each one shows the size ranges for each pattern. They are Euro sizes, but you can easily learn how to measure. Flip your measuring tape over to centimeters!
This is the scary part - the pattern map! You get 2-4 of these, double-sided. They have outlines of each pattern, multiple sizes. You trace the size you need. Each pattern has a different color so you can find it easily. It takes a bit of practice but once you get the hang of it, it is very easy. I use Swedish Tracing Paper to trace mine, which you can find on Amazon or Ebay.
So, now to wait for my fabric to get here and figure out what to make with it. Stay tuned!