About Grainline Studio

Grainline Studio Sewing Patterns

About Grainline Studio

Here at Grainline Studio our goal is to create easy to use sewing patterns that elevate your wardrobe while expanding your skill set. All of our patterns are drafted with a contemporary fit and we take extra care to provide clearly illustrated instructions that are easy to follow to ensure a professional finish. You can take comfort in knowing all of our patterns are drafted and executed by a team of experienced industry professionals with your ease of use in mind. I sincerely hope that sewing one of our patterns not only results in a garment you love, but also provides you with the confidence and pride that come with creating something with your own hands.

About Jen

Back in 2009 I started my blog, Grainline Studio, as a creative outlet while working as a pattern maker in Chicago. Sensing a hole in the home sewing market, I launched our first pattern in 2011 and things took off from there! I’m passionate about teaching and firmly believe that sewing isn’t hard, you just need to take things one step at a time, figure out what works for you, and that the best tip anyone can give is to practice.

I also believe that there isn’t one technique that works for every person and that’s what’s so great about sewing – the multitude of different ways that can work to achieve the same outcome. My team and I strive to bring you, our customers quality, professional patterns along with all the help and information you may need to bring your ideas to life. You can connect with me on Instagram via my personal account @jen_beeman.

Our Pattern Development Process

Each of our patterns starts with an idea. I sketch and refine, coming up with pattern variations and views until our vision for the pattern is complete.

From there my sketches are delivered to our industry-trained pattern maker, who brings them to life. During this process we rely on our Alvanon forms for the initial draft, then work with our fit models over multiple fittings to perfect the silhouette and fit of each garment. Our two size ranges are drafted independently of each other and each relies on a different block, form, and fit model. This allows us to optimize the fit, style, and proportions for each range.

Once our base patterns are perfected it’s time to have them graded into the multiple sizes we offer. Through in-person fittings with women in each of our available sizes, we have developed a custom set of grade rules for each size range. Our pattern grading is done digitally and often takes a bit of back and forth as we work with our grader to tweak our grade rules slightly in order to obtain the best results for each particular pattern.

After the pattern is graded, our team checks and double checks that everything is in the right place, walking pattern pieces, sewing up samples, and testing the various sizes. Once that is completed it’s time to develop the instructions.

We develop two complete sets of instructions, one for each size range, just as we do for the patterns. Because the different sizes can require different pattern shapes, dart sizes, etc. we want the instruction text and illustrations you’re working from to match what you’re actually sewing as closely as possible. From there our graphic designer, who has extensive experience in book and information layout, creates our instruction booklets.

After the instruction books are laid out, our team sews through the instructions again, checking for inconsistencies in the text and illustrations, and looking for any ways to improve the sewing process or refine the text for clarity. Once we’ve completed that it’s time for external pattern testing.

The first step of our external pattern testing process is to bring in our team of community test sewers. Over the course of the three week testing period, they sew up their own garment checking for ease of sewing, any instruction and pattern inconsistencies, and evaluating fit. Each and every size in the range is tested. After this period is over, we go through the detailed responses given to us by this team, and apply needed changes to the pattern and instructions.

Our team then proofs the changes made and the pattern is then sent to a professional tech editor. She combs the patterns and instructions for any remaining errors, test sewing the garment in the process. Upon completion we make needed corrections and if needed, send it back for review.

The final step before we go to print is sending the pattern to our copyeditor, who in addition to checking sentence structure, etc., checks each new pattern against our catalog of existing patterns for any layout inconsistencies that may exist. 

Once we get the pattern back in studio, we make the appropriate changes and do another thorough edit. Then it’s time to print!

After sending the files to our printers we receive paper proofs which we then measure and check to make sure everything will print correctly. If any changes are needed at this point, we make them, but if not, we’re good to print! It takes approximately 3 weeks from the time our proofs are approved to the day the patterns show up at our door.

Our Equipment

We get many questions about our machines, tools, and supplies. You can view our lineup of sewing machines here.