Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Designer Spotlight-- Blue Calla Patterns

Today's spotlight designer is Celine of Blue Calla patterns 

Blue Calla offers a wide variety of sewing patterns from beginner to advanced. Celine uses full color photos in her step by step instructions that make it easy to follow along to get professional results. I personally love the variety of styles Blue Calla offers, there are so many unique patterns and I want to make them all! I've had the privilege of making several Blue Calla patterns and loved the results. Celine joined the Bag of the Month Club as a designer this January and continues to regularly release patterns outside of the club. Her designs are fun, fresh and innovative! 
Lets learn a bit more about Celine:

1)    How long have you been sewing and what inspired you to start designing your own patterns?

I’ve known how to sew since I was a child. My mother is very creative and has taught me several crafts: knitting, crochet, needlepoint, and sewing. I only started sewing for a living in 2009. I discovered that I get bored very quickly when it comes to sewing patterns. I don’t like to make several items from the same pattern, which really doesn’t work if you want to make bags for a living. I started to modify patterns that I had purchased because I wanted extra pockets or extra features and that led to coming up with completely unique items that I designed from beginning to end. I found it extremely satisfying and as soon as I became bored, I would move on to a completely different idea. I created a pillow appliqué pattern first and to my surprise, it actually sold! I then moved on to bag patterns from there.

2)    What do you love most about your job?

I love that I get to be creative and make a living! I love it when everything finally fits together and looks good. It’s very satisfying. The best feeling is when someone posts a photo of a finished bag and THEY are proud of their work.

3)    What is the hardest part of the design process for you?

I am a perfectionist. It takes me a long time before I feel like a pattern is good enough for release – sometimes as long as 3 months!

4)    What do you enjoy doing when you aren't working?

I love gardening! This is why all my patterns are named after flowers.

5)    What is your favorite pizza topping?


6)    What is your favorite thing about bag making?

The possibilities are endless when it comes to bag making. There are so many choices in terms of materials and hardware and designer fabric. Everyone comes up with the most amazing combinations!

7)    What is your least favorite part of bag making?

Cutting and interfacing. Of course.

8)    Is there a pattern of yours that is your favorite?

Probably Aster and Sweet Pea. 

9)    What is your favorite pattern by another designer?

I have so many!! But if I had to choose, I love the Prairie Girl and the NCW from Emmaline bags the most.

10) What is your favorite snack?

Unhealthy snack: potato chips. They are my weakness. Healthy snack: any fruit really.

11) What is your favorite piece of bag hardware?

This is a difficult question. What can you make with a single piece of bag hardware?  If I have to pick one, I’ll say a turn lock because I could make the NCW with it. 

12) What machine do you sew on most often?

I’ve used many machines through the years. Right now, I use a Janome Sewist 625e. It’s the machine I use most often and when I am designing a new pattern. It is a tough little machine and can sew through almost anything! 

13) What advice would you give to someone who is new to bag making?

Before you even touch your sewing machine, read and watch video tutorials. Then start with free patterns and move up to slightly more complex patterns. This is probably good advice when learning any new skill!

14) Who is your favorite fabric designer?

I love so many Alexander Henry prints – especially the bold prints.

15) What is the best compliment you've received as a designer?

I feel it’s a compliment whenever someone chooses to make one of my patterns. I was also completely honoured to have been chosen as a designer for the Bag of the Month club.

16) How organized is your sewing space? Are you a mess maker or everything in its place kind of person?

I am very tidy! I used to be messy but I realized that I would stop sewing completely if my studio was a disaster. I keep all of my supplies very organized and I force myself to tidy once a week – everything back in its place. That way when I walk into the room, it feels more peaceful and I can concentrate.

17) What is your favorite color?

BLUE! (Of course)

18) What is your favorite thing to listen to while working?

I usually watch Netflix.

19) Is there anything you wish others knew about you or what you do?

My testers know this already but I really do work very hard to make sure my patterns are error free. It’s almost impossible but I have very high expectations for myself. I also really do want everyone to succeed with a pattern. I feel like I’ve let someone down if they don’t finish their bag. I am almost always working. Customer service is very important to me.

20) How do you make sure that your patterns are accessible to bagineers? How do you promote your work?

My patterns are sold on Etsy and on my own website. I offer support through my Facebook group and via email. Most of my promotions – sales and pattern releases are advertised through my Instagram account and my Facebook page and group.

Instagram: @bluecallapatterns

Check out the latest Blue Calla release: The Juniper Toiletry Bag

Don't miss your chance to win one of Celine's patterns as part of the 12 pattern package giveaway! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Tanya said...

I really appreciate Celine and all her hard work for BAGOMC, which is where I discovered BCSP. I love all the bags I've made so far from her patterns! Thank you!

Unknown said...

I really like Celine's patterns. Her dedication and work ethic show in each of her patterns.

Unknown said...

I enjoy sewing Celine's patterns and I love that she is always available to answer your questions! I am addicted to the Blue Calla Patterns Group on FB. The shared works are so inspiring and her advice is always spot on.

Verna Groger said...

A few years back I was looking for pictures of Noodlehead's Caravan Tote and came across Blue Calla's versions. Very impressed with her work, I started following her site and that was my entry into bag-a-mania. Celine is one of my favorite designers, love her innovative work and easy to follow patterns.

Cool Lizzie said...

So satisfying getting to know Celine a bit more. Her patterns are lovely, and I'm enjoying making them.
I need a little of her tidiness, however - neatness is not a natural trait, I fear!

Elizabeth Bolton

Unknown said...

I love your patterns. The are so easy to read and use. Very well written.

dalla nonna said...

I love Blue Calla patterns. The first time I tried one and had a question, I posted on their FB page and Celine was the first one to answer. How's that for customer service?!? Her patterns are similar to some popular designer bags so one can make their own without the high price tag!

Tara S said...

Love getting insight into one of my favorite designers!!

Ronkie said...

I love Blue Calla patterns. They are easy to follow. Celine creates patterns for bags that are 'on trend' that you can make your own. Wonderful to learn a bit more about her as a person.

Shawna3 said...

I am a new fan of Blue Calla Patterns, working on my second one right now!! What a great article too....fun and informative!!

Abbe Coury said...

I love Blue Calla Patterns! They are so fantastic in design and are very easy to follow. I love the professional finish they all have, and I've gotten many compliments on the bags I've made. :)

Anonymous said...

Blue Calla Patterns are extremely well organized for anyone. I enjoy making quite a few of her designs, Snowdrop, Clematis, Oleander, omg so many and now she has the acrylic templates as well which is remarkable to have.
I get great compliments on my bags and love letting them know who designed them.

Unknown said...

I love creating with Blue Calla patterns. Super easy to follow and some unique techniques. I love a challenge especially to learn something new. Awesome bag designs :)

Pamela said...

I absolutely love the Celine bag. It's so distinctive! Thanks for everything that you design!

Unknown said...

Love the insight. Thanks

SewSheila said...

I do love well-drafted patterns with great pictures and lots of illustrations. I always get compliments on my IRIS a very beautiful bag that really does not get the attention she deserves. Blue Calla being a Canadain company also endears it to my heart.