Sprout Patterns

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21 May Sprout Patterns

Greetings 🙂
I wish I could say I’ve been on vacation but home renovations interfered big time with sewing.

This Spring  Sprout Patterns offered me the opportunity to sew some of their patterns. I knew about this unique sewing concept, and having never sewed the Sprout way, I enthusiastically accepted the generous offer.

First of all I greatly admire creative minds who think outside the box and the concept is brilliant.

Sprout Patterns is a business that sells Indie sewing patterns printed with any Spoonflower design. After selecting a pattern you are directed to a design board featuring a screen with a  3D rotating image of the finished garment and a 2D image of pattern piece images, along with a box for adding fabric samples from Spoonflower.

Once fabric samples are chosen the customer can click the samples to feature the garment in the fabric sample. Below is the process from one of my choices.

  1. I selected the Penelope Peplum by See Kate Sew and was directed to the design board.

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2. I tried a few fabric samples out……..

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…… before choosing the Nautical Rope design.

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3. The fabric placement is selected  by dragging the fabric design on the 2D image. For this pattern and fabric design the fabric placement was not difficult, but the 2D feature would be extremely useful for plaids and other designs that require precise placement.

4. Next it’s time to select the fabric type, pattern variation and size. I chose the variation with cap sleeves in a  cotton jersey with spandex, and placed my order. (show above)

5. The pattern pieces are digitally printed with notches onto the fabric produced with shrinkage compensation so that once you prewash at home the pieces will all be the correct size ready to cut.  Customers also receive a PDF pattern to print to transfer additional markings.


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I selected one pattern featuring a knit and one featuring a woven fabric.  My woven garment is the Aster Shirt by Colette Patterns. While I very much like the pattern and fabric, the knit top was the more successful project.

Since the pattern pieces are printed onto the fabric, I was unable to make alterations to get the perfect fit.


I love the flutter sleeves,

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the shapely hem and the overall pattern design……

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but the neckline buckles.


I’m all about creative endeavors and congratulate Sprout Patterns for developing this idea and technology. This company has unlimited potential with this process which I’m sure it will achieve.

For an additional fee Sprout Patterns will sew your pattern, aka ‘The White Glove Treatment’.

  • Beyond the one issue I faced, I believe Sprout is a fantastic asset for placing pattern pieces on complicated designs or unstable fabrics. The grain is always straight and there is no shifting during cutting.
  • I found it great fun to try virtual fabric samples on different garments and think the process is a great educational tool  for beginning sewists.
  • I also think a Sprout Patterns gift certificate makes a wonderful present!

Many thanks to this innovative company for generously allowing me to share its unique process with Goodbye Valentino readers. I wish it great success in the future!

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  • Marijane Smith
    Posted at 16:27h, 21 May Reply

    Interesting. Love the peplum top, really cute. The other is cute but a little boxey!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 16:29h, 21 May Reply

      Thank you, Marijane! I love the peplum too. If only I could have made a couple of alterations to the pattern 😉

  • Leigh W
    Posted at 16:29h, 21 May Reply

    That is definitely an interesting concept! Your nautical top turned out very nicely. As a non-standard-envelope size, I would worry about not being able to alter. Now if I could upload MY TNT, and then use that, I would feel a lot more comfortable. Is all the fabric cotton woven or do they have other options?

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 16:31h, 21 May Reply

      I so agree with you and hope the company can address the issue because I love the concept. Spoonflower offers knits and woven from silks to canvas and cotton jersey to performance wear. Many thanks for your comment 🙂

  • Darby Ferguson
    Posted at 16:32h, 21 May Reply

    This is amazing! Thanks for partnering with them. I will try this method asap!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 16:33h, 21 May Reply

      Thank you, Darby – good luck!!

  • Ann Boyd Briggs
    Posted at 16:39h, 21 May Reply

    Does Sprout allow for adjustments on the pattern before fabric is chosen? I am 5’11” tall and generally have to alter the length of pattern pieces to achieve the correct fit.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 16:53h, 21 May Reply

      Not to my knowledge, Ann. This is the one missing link to an otherwise wonderful idea 😉

  • Veronika Eido
    Posted at 17:00h, 21 May Reply

    Cute tops! Is it just me or there is a lot waste fabric left – I am really wondering why they do not optimize the pattern placement little bit more. I could understand it on the blue top but the pink one????

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:09h, 21 May Reply

      Thank you, Veronika!
      There was some excess fabric in the red/pink top, but I used it to created bias strips 😉

  • Cindy Symes
    Posted at 17:11h, 21 May Reply

    This is a fabulous idea, and it looks like so much fun! But, beyond my concern for being able to do alterations, my other concern would be pre-washing the fabric. I could see this working more for knits than wovens.. Your nautical top turned out fabulously! Just love it! I

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:28h, 21 May Reply

      Hi Cindy
      All fabrics are pre-washed before the pattern is printed – a great feature!! 🙂 🙂

  • Marolyn Sayre-Smith
    Posted at 17:56h, 21 May Reply

    Hi Sarah, Liked the nautical print fabric and pattern the best. Please tell me how you are able to look younger every time you have a photo posted? You look so fantastic!!! Looks like you are ready for warm summer days. Marolyn

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 18:07h, 21 May Reply

      Isn’t this a nice comment – many thanks Carolyn! Recently I lost 10 pounds which has changed the shape of my face. I also have a wonderful dermatologist 😉

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:33h, 23 May Reply

      …..and please forgive the auto correct for changing the spelling from Marolyn to Carolyn!

  • Julie Starr
    Posted at 18:03h, 21 May Reply

    Thanks for a balanced and thoughtful review of this interesting concept, Sarah. With a few more customization options for fit I can see this idea really taking off. The peplum top is just adorable – nautical prints are always a favorite of mine. Great post!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 18:09h, 21 May Reply

      Thank you for your comment, Julie 🙂 You’re exactly right – when and if the company can offer customization options for fit, it will absolutely soar!

  • Marybeth Tawfik
    Posted at 18:11h, 21 May Reply

    A great idea but a couple of comments due to my experiences with Spoonflower … a lot of the fabrics are not colorfast, neither washing or dry cleaning, so be sure to test that first. I had a terrible experience with the linen/cotton, the cotton canvas, and the cotton knits.

    Another comment – I have very very rarely had anything that was printed on-grain from them! Most commercial fabrics aren’t really either, but just to make that clear, I’ve had some pretty wonky fabrics from them in the past. I make custom printed pillows and quilts and many times it’s so off-grain we have to do some real gymnastics to get it to work.

    I’m not saying don’t try it, I’m saying try it with small projects first!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 18:16h, 21 May Reply

      Great advice, Marybeth! I so applaud Sprout and Spoonflower for introducing these innovative concepts. I really hope they continue on a progressive course 😉

  • Patricia Pfeiffer
    Posted at 18:33h, 21 May Reply

    If they would sell patterns with some basic alterations, like petite or tall or full bust it would work out well for some of us, maybe. There are patterns out there with separate pieces for full busts. Why not some for taller people? Petites, with their shorter lengths and narrower shoulders? My square shoulder line could probably be altered in the sewing, but the poor fit in the neckline of the woven fabric is probably due to the shoulder width difference in petite sizing.
    Other than some of those differences, the idea sounds like a good one. Even if you didn’t order the fabric, you could get an idea of what the garment would look like made up in various fabrics. Can you order the pattern and get the fabric without it being printed on the fabric?

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 19:43h, 21 May Reply

      You can order the fabric or pattern alone. I really admire the Sprout concept ~ it is new in terms of traditional sewing and I believe in time will be accommodate customized fitting. Many thanks for your comment 😉

  • Suzanne
    Posted at 18:40h, 21 May Reply

    What alterations would you have normally made to fix that Aster neckline?

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 19:44h, 21 May Reply

      I might have cut the front in a larger size than the back or added a full bust adjustment 😉

  • Karen Neal
    Posted at 18:57h, 21 May Reply

    It’s a great idea, but I agree with everyone who has said we have to be able to do our own special alterations. That is one of the main reasons I sew..

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 19:46h, 21 May Reply

      Agree, although I love this company’s ability to show the finished garment and try out fabric samples on the 3 D model and the fabric placement aspect. 😉

  • Lone Star Couture
    Posted at 19:00h, 21 May Reply

    Hey Sarah,
    This is a amazing concept and I’m so glad you had an opportunity to try it out. To me it looks like match made in heaven for new sewers that generally don’t have a high expectation of a achieving a custom fit. For the sake of ease and timesaving on pattern tiling or simply pattern layout it looks wonderful. And I Iove the aspect of being able to preview fabric designs and pattern placement. I think with the addition of adding some fitting capability to it they may really be on to something. Great post.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:16h, 22 May Reply

      Thank you, Dorcas!
      As I said …… I really love out of the box thinking and who knows what advances will be made in the next few years. 😉

  • Kathie Bennett
    Posted at 19:14h, 21 May Reply

    Great Look!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:17h, 22 May Reply

      Thank you!

  • Alice Elliot
    Posted at 20:26h, 21 May Reply

    The peplum top is really cute! I have the same problem with that Colette pattern. I have to cut the neck almost 3-4 sizes smaller than the rest of the pattern. I’ve given up using Colette top patterns because of serious fit issues and I’m an experienced sewist and former sewing instructor. The hassle is just not worth it.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:21h, 22 May Reply

      Aha… I’ve never sewn a Colette before but it’s helpful to know you have had the exact issue. According to my measurements and the finished measurements of the pattern it should have fit perfectly, but that’s rarely the case 😉 Many thanks for your comment, Alice!

  • Karey Harrison
    Posted at 20:30h, 21 May Reply

    I know it won’t work for me. Everything I make, including knits, requires significant fitting adjustment. I’ve even tried personalised Lekala patterns & the (many) measurements they collect generate weird fitting requirements for me too.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:22h, 22 May Reply

      Thanks for your comment, Karey! Hopefully the company can work through the pattern adjustment issue.

  • Helen Peemoeller
    Posted at 20:39h, 21 May Reply

    This is a fascinating concept, but like many of the comments, the lack of a chance to alter the pattern bothers me. Sprout seems quite close-mouthed about their pricing’ I realize that customizing takes time, and therefore, money. But I have a feeling that the Sprout kits may be very expensive. Is this so?

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:24h, 22 May Reply

      Yes, Sprout patterns are not cheap. It’s a great concept and in my opinion would be a fun gift for someone who sews. Many thanks for your comment Helen 😉

  • Mary Funt
    Posted at 21:51h, 21 May Reply

    Interesting concept and the peplum top looks wonderful. I’ve used Spoonflower in the past, both designing my own fabric and using their designs. I purchased the organic knit cotton for crib sheets and it worked well and I found the colors durable. I see the same limitations in having a pattern printed on the fabric- no ability for alterations. I priced the Grainline Archer shirt and cost was $62 to $82 depending on fabric selected. The layout is designed for the largest size which accounts for the large spaces between pattern pieces in smaller sizes. If you use a small size the garment could be cut using much less fabric. The idea could work well for beginning sewers wanting simple garments.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:31h, 22 May Reply

      Nice to hear from you, Mary! Such a good idea about the crib sheets. If Sprout can work on customized fitting options I see great potential for the company, but in the meantime you’re correct……..it’s good for beginning sewists wanting simple garments 😉

    • neucarol
      Posted at 08:37h, 22 May Reply

      “…could work well for beginning sewers…” my exact thought

  • Connie Verdeck
    Posted at 22:01h, 21 May Reply

    That is amazing!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:31h, 22 May Reply

      Hi Connie and I agree that this concept and technology is quite amazing 😉

  • Lone Star Couture
    Posted at 22:06h, 21 May Reply

    Plus I forgot to say how cute the top is on you!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:32h, 22 May Reply

      ah…… thank you 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • Paloverde
    Posted at 23:45h, 21 May Reply

    What do I think? I think that with a little extra effort, I could adjust the pattern to fit me (the reason I sew), lay it out properly, and cut it out myself. This is an extremely expensive way to avoid a few steps. I used to like Spoonflower, but the more I see of these Sprout posts, the more I hate them.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:38h, 22 May Reply

      While there is room for room improvement, I find it difficult to hate a company that encourages people to sew and think creatively. Mary Funt’s comment that the idea could work well for beginning sewers wanting simple garments is an example of how Sprout can benefit the sewing community.

  • Becky Thompson
    Posted at 06:34h, 22 May Reply

    One of the biggest reasons that people sew is for a custom fit because they are usually hard to fit in RTW and until they nail this issue down, I won’t be using them. This concept is amazing and appears to be still in its infancy. As technology improves, I’m sure they’ll get better as well. A couple of years ago I purchased glasses from Zenni Optical.com and their website allows you to upload a photo and “try on” glasses virtually. The price was very reasonable, the quality was great, and the look was what I was expecting. However, the fit wasn’t quite right. Then I couldn’t get anyone to adjust them for me in person because I didn’t purchase my glasses in their shop. Very frustrating. It would drive me bats if I couldn’t adjust a pattern.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:41h, 22 May Reply

      Hi Becky ~ I agree that the concept is still in its infancy (very nicely put) and want to support this direction and idea of designing your garment online. Hopefully it will advance and one day offer customization fitting opportunities. Many thanks for your comment 😉

  • Karen Hinson
    Posted at 07:00h, 22 May Reply

    So glad you posted this. I wondered how this process worked. Very interested in trying this for a child’s pattern, as I have too many alterations to work.

  • Joanne Burnett
    Posted at 07:57h, 22 May Reply

    Very interesting concept, but needs tweaking. Seeing the print on your garment is very helpful, but if you can’t make the alterations you need that garment becomes an expensive wadder, which defeats the whole point of sewing. I am glad you shared your experiences. I will stick to just ordering the fabric.

  • peggy leah
    Posted at 08:26h, 22 May Reply

    The nautical top is absolutely adorable on you..
    Love getting your posts! The Spout concept is probably
    the future of sewing. I fear that soon all fabric stores will
    disappear as a lot have already except perhaps those
    in major cities. My area has lost a few in the last couple
    of years or have downsized considerably. I still need to see
    and touch. What a thrill to walk into a well stocked fabric

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 08:54h, 22 May Reply

      I feel your pain Peggy! There is nothing like a fine fabric store, but today my town which was once the textile capital of the world only has a JoAnn and home dec fabric store. Anyhow time marches on and we adapt 😉 Many thanks for your comment.

  • neucarol
    Posted at 08:39h, 22 May Reply

    How does this concept work when matching fabric prints?

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 08:55h, 22 May Reply

      By dragging the image on the two dimensional pattern pieces you are able to place and match the fabrics 😉

      • neucarol
        Posted at 09:38h, 23 May Reply

        Should be easier than dealing with yards of fabric on a cutting table, as you can resize the computer screen to see the entire pattern. And zoom in for details.

  • Debi
    Posted at 10:42h, 22 May Reply

    Very cute tops…you make anything look good!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:27h, 23 May Reply

      Thank you, Debi….. such a nice comment 🙂 🙂

  • Alania Sheeley
    Posted at 11:08h, 22 May Reply

    Like so many other comments, I love the concept; but, I have to be able to make alterations to my patterns for a proper fit.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:29h, 23 May Reply

      Yesterday after reading my post, Sprout told me they are working hard on customization options 😉 Once this issue is worked out it will open a new world of possibilities!

  • Tomasa
    Posted at 12:32h, 22 May Reply

    Love the nautical rope print top. It fits you beautifully. Interesting concept. This system would not work for me at all since I usually must make extensive alterations to accommodate my figure.

  • Terri
    Posted at 17:11h, 22 May Reply

    Would it be possible to have them print the pattern onto a muslin fabric? THEN you could do alterations.
    Do they sell muslin? Just a thought.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:31h, 23 May Reply

      I’m not sure Terri – but yesterday after reading my post, Sprout told me they are working hard on customization options 😉 Once this issue is worked out it will open a new world of possibilities!

  • MaryEllen
    Posted at 09:36h, 23 May Reply

    The nautical top is very cute & stylish . I love this concept . Many have commented that they wouldn’t use Sprout because of fitting challenges . While this is true -I think it’s a wonderful idea that there are so many options for sewers today . Seeing the tops you made helps sewers see how theses fabrics “act” . It provides so. I have inspiration!!!! Thanks !!

    • MaryEllen
      Posted at 09:37h, 23 May Reply

      It provides so much inspiration! Thanks !!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:16h, 25 May Reply

      Thank you, Mary Ellen. I’ve heard from Sprout since publishing this post and they are working on customization options for fitting, but I agree with you……. Sprout offers an unique concept that will be developed over time and should be quite successful. 😉

  • Karen S
    Posted at 14:10h, 23 May Reply

    I read about this on another blog recently and I think it’s a really neat idea. And I like the fabric you picked for both tops. The peplum top definitely fits better and looks great on you. The woven top looks nice but a little big overall but especially in the neck area. I’d never be able to try a top or dress preprinted on the fabric because I need to make a narrow shoulder adjustment (amongst others) every time. If they could make some alterations for you that would be really sweet.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:14h, 25 May Reply

      Many thanks for your comment, Karen! After reading my post, Sprout told me they are working hard on customization options 😉 Once this issue is worked out it will open a new world of possibilities!

  • Michele Ferguson
    Posted at 16:55h, 25 May Reply

    Saw your nautical top on PR and headed over to read your blog post. Anything custom is not going to be inexpensive and a pattern printed on the fabric of your choice after you’ve had a chance to try several fabrics is very custom, IMHO!! If the garment is too big, there is no reason you couldn’t make adjustments to it like you would on a commercial pattern that you cut out yourself. I know this wouldn’t work for those that need extensive adjustments, but I imagine those sewists would steer clear of this concept. As someone already pointed out, Colette has had real issues with the fit of their patterns, but I believe they are working on correcting the fit issues. I so appreciate reading someone’s review of this concept, thank you so much!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:54h, 26 May Reply

      Many thanks for your comment, Michele! You’re right that this is not an inexpensive way to sew, but it is innovative and interesting. This is my first time to sew a Colette pattern ~ I should have read reviews on the PR website 😉

  • Patricia Brown
    Posted at 09:07h, 27 May Reply

    Of the two tops I love the peplum top the best. It accentuates your waist line. I am 6 ft, tall and would need to adjust for my height, particularly in the torso. I love the concept though. You look great as always!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:19h, 28 May Reply

      Thank you, Patricia!I’ve heard from Sprout since publishing this post and they are working on customization options for fitting, but for now ……

  • KatheenC
    Posted at 13:03h, 28 May Reply

    this is a fascinating idea. Sure, there are tweaks to be made and improvements needed… when is that not ever true for a new product? I’m glad to hear that they recognize that and are working on it.
    I thought the idea of children’s clothes was a great one, and of the ease it might offer to newer or busier sewers.
    It also made me think of the college age students I teach to sew. Very few of them need major fit alterations (ah the glorious days of a youthful body… I remember it well). The part of sewing that excites them is the ability to make something unique and personal. This would offer that prospect. And as new sewers they are still struggling with layout and fabric choice… the would help with that as well!
    Thanks for sharing this new business. And congrats on the very cute new top!

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