Pattern Testing – The Kyoto Kimono

Kyoto Kimono by Elise Patterns
Kyoto Kimono by Elise Patterns

I was a very busy sewist last month, I volunteered to be a pattern tester for 3 indie pattern companies, and I got the most amazing stuff to test!  This kimono is by a brand new company, Elise Patterns.  Elise Patterns is owned by Freya from Handmade by Freya.  She has set out to create pretty lingerie patterns that are uncomplicated to make, and fabulous to wear!  Her first two patterns are available now, and this is one of them.

DSC08543-1The jacket, or robe, is available in two lengths, this short version and a more lingerie type mid-thigh length.  There are also two sleeve choices.  I decided to go with the shorter version, knowing Daughter No2 would probably want it more for day wear than lingerie!  I ferreted around in my stash until I found this pretty cotton floral lawn.  I’ve had it for ages, but once I saw the line drawings of Freya’s pattern, I pictured it in this with contrast bands.  They’re cut from some black cotton lawn, also from the stash.

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The pattern itself is really easy to follow and make.  I would certainly recommend it to anyone from beginner level up.  I chose to French seam the inners, and the contrast bands have had their seams all tucked away too, so when this flips open in the breeze, it’s just as pretty on the inside as on the out.

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Daughter No2 loves it – she wore it out to a friend’s barbeque the day I made it (see photo above) with her chopped off jeans and came home with orders!!!  Ha!  This selfish seamstress isn’t about to do that, but now the pattern is available, I shall be sending her mates to the website & including a note to come to one of my sewing classes to make it up!  She has decided it is perfect for festival wear and I know it has pride of honour at the top of her list of things to pack for the Reading & Leeds Festival later this summer.

DSC08540-1It really is a great pattern, there are only two main pieces, the front & back, and the band strips.  If you were to make it for lingerie, consider cutting the sleeve bands on the bias and then finishing with a scalloped edge using a fancy stitch on your sewing machine.  There are so many ways you could customise this kimono, I think the varieties could look amazing!

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I’m looking forward to seeing this pattern pop up all over Blogland, it has great potential!