Meet a maker: Ellie Karlsson
Hi Ellie, tell us, where do you live?
I live in Hammarbyhöjden, which is a suburb in the southern part of Stockholm, Sweden. The nearest landmark is the Globe arena.
How did you first get into sewing?
I wanted to create something with my own hands. I also want to wear clothes that no one else had or could buy directly from a shop.
Which is your favourite TAL pattern and why?
It's so hard to choose, I've only sewn five patterns so far. I probably have to choose the Cuff Dress just because that pattern gave me my desire and inspiration to start sewing again.
How would you describe your personal style?
I almost always wear black, sometimes I pop to the outfit with a strong color on the earrings or necklace. I like to wear layer upon layer, simple straight lines, flowing kimonos and chunky boots.
Which is your favourite sewing tool and why?
I have three favourites that I can't live without: My overlock machine, my seam ripper and my headlamp. The seam ripper is often used in conjunction with the headlamp...
What are your best sewing tips/tricks?
Take a break when you are tired or stressed. Always wash the fabric before you start and press the seams firmly.
What are the best and worst bits of sewing?
The best thing is to be able to create something with your hands. The worst thing is having to draw patterns and cut the fabric.
What’s your most memorable sewing mistake?
I was almost done with this beautiful kimono. I just had to overlock and stitch the bottom hem but I had been sewing all day and I was very tired so I didn't notice that the overlock accidentally cut a giant hole in the back of the garment.
What’s your proudest sewing moment?
I am most proud of a hoodie that I sewed for my niece because it is the first garment that I made with a zipper.
What do you like to listen to while sewing?
I usually listen to different podcasts but when I have to concentrate I listen to smooth jazz.
What would you want to say to someone who’s trying to get started in sewing?
Start by borrowing a sewing machine from a friend and buy a pattern from TAL, I can warmly recommend the High Cuff Sweater. The sweater is easy to sew and the end result is fantastic.
Youtube has lots of tutorials for beginners. If you have no experience at all then take a course, it is well-invested money. If you feel that sewing is something for you, treat yourself to your own sewing machine and proper cloth scissors.
If you feel that sewing is something for you, treat yourself to your own sewing machine and proper cloth scissors.
What’s your next project?
It will be the Oversized Shirt Pattern. I have wanted to sew a shirt dress for a very long time and now I finally found the perfect pattern with simple instructions that are easy to understand even if you do not have much experience. I will also make the Free Pyjamas as soon as possible.
What do you do when you’re not sewing?
Usually, I hang out with friends, go to concerts, museums, cinemas and eat out. But right now, with the corona restrictions, I'm trying to learn to knit and hang out with my friends digitally.
During the weeks I work as a project manager for the Tekla festival, which is a tech festival for girls aged 11-15 years.