Monday, July 20, 2009

Sense and Sensibility Sewing Patterns

I was not familiar with the Sense and Sensibility company until I was given the opportunity to review their patterns. Jennie Chancey, the owner/ designer of Sense and Sensibility offers a wide variety of historically inspired dress patterns for women and girls. I really enjoyed just looking through their website at all the photos!

The pattern I was offered was the Edwardian apron pattern for girls. Emily (9) has been asking to learn to sew, so I decided that this would be a great opportunity to begin teaching her. I have done quite a bit of sewing, but Emily has never done any machine sewing herself. I received the pattern in pdf format along with an e-class.

DSC07402 First, I printed the 25 pattern pages, laid them out on the floor, and taped the pages together. Then I was able to actually cut out the pieces. The instructions for doing this were very clear and the process was easy to do. The directions suggested tracing the pattern onto interfacing for greater durability. We chose not to do that since we will probably be using the pattern only once or twice. One neat feature of the e-pattern is that, since it is in PDF format, it is easy to shrink down dramatically to make a doll-size pattern. What fun to have matching aprons for a little girl and her doll! Maybe that will be my next project….

We did make one modification to the pattern. I used the size 8, but made the length of a size 4. This is a very long apron style and we wanted it a bit shorter. The hem still falls slightly below the knee.

DSC07408Emily and I watched the e-class together before beginning the project. I think it was helpful for her to see the steps before we attempted them. I expected the class to explain the directions fully, but I think we should have read the pattern directions first, then watched the class because I found myself a bit lost at a couple points. Because I have sewn a lot, I didn’t find the class necessary, but I think that a novice seamstress would find it very helpful. I especially thought the video segments were well done and very helpful.

DSC07415 This pattern required a lot of binding edges. I thought this would be too difficult for Emily, so I did the binding and let her do the straight seams and hems. She also did most of the ironing, which she loved. Go figure! I think I’ve found a new chore for her! She enjoyed learning to use the sewing machine as well. I will have to look for some more easy sewing projects.

The finished apron!

DSC07417 The class gave very explicit instructions for making one’s own bias tape. I thought that was a nice touch, although we chose to use contrasting purchased bias tape instead. (The yardage specified on the pattern was too little, however; we needed twice as much bias tape as the directions listed!) Overall, this was a great project. The finished apron was lovely, the instructions were clear, and the e-class was an innovative addition to the sewing process.

The pattern sells for $7.95 for the e-pattern and $12.95 for the printed pattern. The e-class is $19.95 or $24.95 for the e-class with e-pattern included.

You can read more reviews of this product at


  1. I found your blog on the TOS Crew blog site. Your apron turned out so cute! I think that is very neat that the construction of it was a shared experience.

  2. Thanks! It was a fun project!

  3. It came out very nice! She is so cute in it!


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