welcome To The One Thimble Blog
Lauren is the face behind Tadah! Patterns, creating styles which have a nod to nostalgia and a fresh take on sewing. Tadah! Patterns are all about celebrating modern sewing with designs that are accessible, funky and above all fun! She has worn many hats in her adult life, most of which have revolved around teaching.
Can you tell me a little about how you got into sewing/pattern design?
I started sewing very young.. my mum taught me the basics when I was about 5 years old, but my dad can also use a sewing machine so it has always been a part of my life. Funnily enough I didn’t enjoy sewing in home ec at school (I much preferred woodwork!) so I didn’t sit down at a sewing machine again until I was expecting my first bub 8 years ago. It was then that I began creating, first with other people’s patterns and soon after I began designing my own with a little help from a friend who is a professional drafter and a lot of research and learning online. Thankfully I now have a fabulous patternmaker who does the technical side for me!
What is your favourite habby item that you couldn’t live without?
My loop turner! I use it pretty much every time I sew and it has saved me many hissy fits. I also love my hot hemmer and bias makers.
Who/what/where inspires you?
This is constantly changing and evolving so it is a difficult one to answer.
In terms of designing I am inspired mostly by my girls.. they tell me what they like and what is comfortable and then I tweak it to suit my own style and vision.
When it comes to sewing a huge source of inspiration is my tester team. I am very lucky to have a group of extremely talented ladies who love to push the boundaries and experiment with new styles. I love seeing what they do with each pattern – it is one of my favourite parts of the pattern making process!
And when it comes to the way I run my business I am inspired by Kathryn from The Smallest Tribe and YOU Jen! You are both such kind souls and run your businesses in a way that is true to you and without compromising your beliefs. I really admire that.
What’s something people might not know about you?
Hmm.. I am quite a private person so there are probably many things! One thing that people probably don’t know is that I travelled the world as a kid and have had the travel bug ever since. When I was in my first year of uni I decided to volunteer in Costa Rica for my summer holidays which was an unforgettable experience – 3 months in a tiny village in the mountains with no contact with the outside world at all. Needless to say, my mum wasn’t very happy with the situation and probably barely slept the whole time I was gone. It didn’t help that the only phone call she received was when I was rushed by ambulance to the closest town because I couldn’t breath (allergic reaction)!
What is your biggest challenge and do you have any advice for someone else in a similar situation?
My biggest challenge in life has always been self-doubt. I have big plans, huge ideas, and then a little voice that tells me I could never pull them off. Of course my advice to others is to tell that little voice to p*ss off and charge ahead anyway! But also to frequently reflect on what you HAVE achieved as a reminder that you CAN do it.
What are you working on now/ what can we expect next from you?
Right now I am taking a breath. Last year was an incredibly busy one for Tadah so I was very thankful to have a few weeks off over Christmas. I have just started back again and once I get on top of admin again I will be working on a knit version of our Breeze Dress, and then hopefully turning my attention to Autumn and Winter designs!
What’s your favourite thing you’ve made/designed and why?
Oh my gosh this is like choosing a favourite child! I will have to include a few if that’s ok?
My favourite for my big girl is this Tea Party Dress. The colours are so vibrant and the style suits her so well. But most of all I loved what happened when she put it on – her face lit up, her smile was bursting off her face, and she just had so much confidence. Making clothes for my kids that make THEM feel good is exactly why I started this gig and the whole reason I continue.
And my other favourite is this dress that I made for Collaborate for a Cause last year (modeled by my youngest). At the time I had been bogged down in ‘behind the scenes’ work for months.. A new website, emails, business restructure, more emails, tax, admin.. you know, all the stuff that sucks the life out of you! Then my friend Tanya impulsively said to me about a week before submissions were due “Hey, want to join me for a collaboration?”. The dress design was just an idea in my head beforehand and the style (“linen and lace”) was not something I was comfortable with, so the whole exercise had me cursing like crazy. But I am so glad I agreed because this little dress pulled me out of the creative black hole I was in and showed me yet again that I shouldn’t listen to that little voice in my head that tells me I can’t do it 😉