Look Back in Love to the 1950s
Leah Pitkin’s vignettes of vintage fashion for girls and their dolls give us a glimpse into a gentler time. Those of us who remember the styles of the 1950s will smile at the memories. We wore dresses and crinolines, jeans were work clothes and leggings were tights worn under our skirts in winter.
If you like the 50s look, you also know how hard it is to find it, especially for girls size 2T to 9/10. And also, how expensive such wardrobe additions are. So, where to find them? Vintage Little Lady has the answer to that dilemma.
Download Delicate Designs of the Past
Sew your own 20th century look! Visit the Vintage Little Lady website, where you’ll find Leah’s first sewing pattern release, Opal. The downloadable pattern is easy for sewing beginners, uses very little material, and has unlimited variations. Can you believe every one of those adorable dresses was made from the same basic pattern?
Download the PDF sewing patterns to print out at home. They include pattern pieces and easy to follow tutorials, full of pictures and instructions. Currently, Vintage Little Lady is located online. Order Leah’s custom designed patterns via the website, browse her Facebook posts (and join the Facebook pattern group), smile at the Instagram photos and pin your favorites on Pinterest.
It Started with the First Stitch
Leah has always loved vintage fashion, from the first. Her talented grandmother taught her hand sewing as a little girl. At 10 years old, she drafted her own patterns onto pattern paper. That summer, her mom signed her up for local sewing lessons, and she knew then that sewing was more than a hobby. Later in life, she had two sweet daughters who inspired her to follow her dream of creating and sewing.
While working as a hairdresser, then a photographer, Leah became a pattern tester for several companies. After a few years, she began teaching herself digital pattern drafting, with plans to someday start her own company. Then she was hired as a designer for Violette Field Threads. After gaining experience for a year and a half, Leah was ready to start her own company.
Putting together her skills as a designer, hairdresser and photographer, Leah features her own sweet girls as models for Vintage Little Lady creations. Many little girls love playing dress up, and Leah is thankful that these 2 beauties are so willing to help out.
Creating the Brand
I found Autumn Lane on Etsy by searching for logos when I was looking for a logo for my business. Water color florals are my favorites. And when I came across Autumn Lane, their aesthetic was just like mine and I loved it! I loved my logos so much that I decided to look further into the company for more services, such as my web design! Lily did such a fabulous job on my logo. I was excited about her doing my site! And, of course, it turned out awesome too!
Everyone is so very helpful and quick with all that they do! The customer service is what made me stick with Autumn Lane for everything! My logos, my site, my server, my SEO etc. I love Autumn Lane and so glad I came across them on Etsy!
Tailoring the Pattern
Asked about her greatest obstacle, Leah is quick to admit that learning her fashion drafting program was a mountain of frustration! There were times she really wanted to give up, but she’d walk away and come back to try again. Leah kept at it, dedicated to climbing Mt Frustration, and finally planted her flag at the summit.
Creating her business was the greatest success. And the most rewarding was to add the first debut patterns to her website. People give the Opal patterns 5 stars, and Leah loves seeing everyone’s beautifully sewn creations on their daughters too.
Leah’s hope for the future is a library full of PDF patterns with the vintage flare, that people love. Another dream is hosting sewing retreats for customers to enjoy. In the world of sewing there are always new things coming up every day.
The best advice I have for someone wanting to do the same is “dedication”. You have to be dedicated to do this job. Be organized, fearless, always searching for better ways to do things. And be willing to be consistent, active with your customers. Keep up with trends, and be very particular/perfectionist/overachiever.