>A question for my pattern customers

>Hello all,
I’ve got a question that I would love your feedback on.
Up to the present most patterns I have offered have been in “sets”.  Outfits you can purchase that have multiple pieces- shorts, pants, blouse- or blouse, skirt, shorts, etc.
In the back of my mind for some time I’ve considered breaking up future patterns into separates to be purchased individually.  This could be blouses, skirts, jackets, shorts, pants, whatever the future may hold.
The pro is that if you were between sizes you could choose a blouse to fit, and a separate bottom to fit.
The con is that if you wanted all pieces it would be more expensive than buying the outfit pack.  My patterns and instructions are done digitally now to conserve paper the best I can- there will be more “empty space” so to speak, on the pattern sheets and instructions which raises my supply cost.  Since it takes me a lot of time to do the layouts after I have made the patterns digitally in each size, it would only be available in one OR the other… for example, even though a blouse and skirt were meant to go together they would have to be purchased separately if you wanted the whole look.
I would be interested in hearing your thoughts on this and will take all into consideration in what I decide to do in the future releases.
Many thanks!

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15 Responses to >A question for my pattern customers

  1. reilly says:

    >Personally I like mixing amd matching, so I'd prefer buying something as separates unless it's something like your sportswear pattern or beachwear pattern with the wrap skirt. Those things kind of obviously go together, but for example if I wanted an interesting blouse and a skirt pattern to go with it that don't necessarily have to or are meant to go together, I'd rather choose myself. 🙂

  2. Beth says:

    >I usually prefer to buy separates individually, because I frequently only want 1 garment in the set. Even if buying multiple styles means paying a little more in the end, it's spread over time so I don't mind. I especially feel this way when trying out a new company – I like to buy a single, cheaper pattern to see if I like it.The exception is when there's a "theme" to the separates, and the top and bottom are designed to go together – I'd want your sailor outfit or the sarong pieces all in one pattern, for example.

  3. Beth says:

    >The funny thing is, the sportwear pattern that reilly wants grouped is one I'd rather have as separates! (Smooth Sailing) I have a similar blouse pattern already, so I only wanted the pants. But I really wanted the pants, so I bought the whole thing, but I thought real hard about it first.

  4. Andrea says:

    >I agree with what's been said so far. Some things clearly should go together in one pattern. Perhaps outfits like the sailor suit could be priced a bit higher than single garment patterns. For people who want the whole outfit of, say the sport trousers and blouse, perhaps you could offer a package price, rather than selling them in a single pattern. For example, $20 for each garment, but $35 if bought together.

  5. >Thanks so much, everyone, for your input so far!Andrea, that's a fabulous idea! That way it would work out better for both me and the customer. :)You guys are awesome.

  6. Claudia says:

    >I like both ways. Sometimes, it's nice to have a choice. Obvious sets should go together, but a separates wardrobe would be nice too.

  7. >Hmm. I prefer the set. I figure that since most of the patterns I buy are vintage that are sizes smaller anyway, if I need a little extra room on the bottom (since I'm a classic pear shape!) then I just add it. I also think in these rough economic times keeping the prices low is very important.

  8. casey says:

    >I'm going to chime in with what's been said previously. I sometimes like the idea of having separates. I bought the Smooth Sailing pattern mostly because I wanted the pants; I already have plenty of blouse patterns in my vintage stash (though I'm thinking eventually I'm going to make this, if only because the bias cut sleeves are just screaming for me to play with a directional pattern!). For me, it'd probably not only be appealing to just buy the pattern for the piece I want to make but also attract me from a budget standpoint. 😉 ♥ Caseyblog | elegantmusings.com

  9. >Likewise, I would love some separates and some sets (I like the patterns which have one blouse with two possible styles…like the Eva Dress pattern blouse I just finished…maybe one blouse two ways, for example, would help eliminate the blank page issue you mentioned?)

  10. TrixieLeaf says:

    >I like the way that they are grouped. I feel like it's a little more "bang for your buck", but it would be cool to see a few separates too. (I like the 2/3 possible styles too, it's fun to get one pattern that you can make a couple different ways)

  11. Steph says:

    >I like buying patterns with a few different pieces in them- often I buy for a skirt or a blouse, and end up making all of them even if they didn't initially interest me.

  12. >It is irrelevant to me whether the patterns come as separates or grouped, since ultimately, even if I purchase a grouped pattern because I want to make a particular piece (say pants) I will probably end up using all the patterns at some time or another. The other thing about your particular line is that it isn't a straight re-pop of a vintage pattern, so I enjoy seeing how you, as the designer, imagine your pieces being worn. It's all good.

  13. Meg says:

    >I like them in sets. I think it makes it easier to "put something together" for beginners or people who are new to vintage, and it does feel like "value added". Would there be a significant cost savings for you in offering patterns as separates? I imagine that offering multi-sized patterns would work out to be about the same in terms of production cost. I can see the benefit of multiple sizes in one envelope, but since I am a pretty "standard" size, it's not a big deal for me.

  14. >I really appreciate all of you taking the time to comment on what you like or would like to see.I think I will continue to do both sets and separates.From your perspective- If there is a two piece dress that's a blouse/skirt combo. Would you all rather see a separate blouse and a separate basic skirt, or in this case would you rather they were put together?Meg- there would be no cost savings for me as costing is proportionate to material cost. It would, however, take me longer to make. The pro would probably be on the consumer's side- if between sizes or bust/waist/hip ratio varied greatly they could choose a separate top and separate bottom to fit.For me to profit it really is just depending on sales… if it's more appealing and there's more sales I'd get paid back eventually (I hope!) It's really just what's popular with customers that profits me, so what makes them happy makes me happy.For example- if more customers are attracted because they could, say, buy a blouse for $15, rather than buy a blouse/skirt combo for $22 because they wouldn't really wear the skirt, if the blouse makes more sales than the combo, that's good for me. Heck, as long as I'm paid back for my time and materials, I'm happy 😉 But that said, since it does take me so long to make and it's a niche field, and I'm just a one woman team I would rather offer just separates or just a grouping, not both. It probably would not end up paying me back for my time, so I'd do one or the other and then move on to the next design.

  15. Ledeaux says:

    >I would buy most of your patterns if they were sized larger than 18. I am over 6 feet tall and wear and 18-20, depending on the cut. It's probably not practical for you to do this, but if you even think about it, here is one potential customer!

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