Welcome to a brand new blog series where we get to know more about the designers behind some of our favourite lingerie pattern brands.
Debuting this series is Viviane from Etoffe Malicieuse, a french pattern designer who's exquisitely stylish pieces range from bralettes and underwired bras to swimwear and even includes men's boxer briefs!
Q ~ Tell us a bit about the person behind Etoffe Malicieuse and also how you named your business.
My name is Viviane and I am the mother of a boy and a little girl. "Etoffe" is a French word which means "pretty fabric/quality fabric."
"Malicieux" means mischievous: one who jokes, but who is also cunning.
Q ~ Where do you find inspiration?
For simple patterns, I don’t really need inspiration. For more original patterns, I often start with some sketches, then the ideas start flowing. It is often by drawing that I find ideas. Really, the hardest part is not how to find inspiration but having time to create all the ideas I come up with!
Q ~ Describe your creative process.
I don't have a "recipe," I simply sew what I want. For example, I was wondering if sewing socks was possible. I tried, I liked, I finalised! This pattern was also very successful. It’s simple, fast, and offers a nice, original gift. And, once again, it uses fabric scraps: less waste!
Q ~ You recently translated some of your patterns into English, which must have been a big undertaking. What other goals do you have for 2020?
I speak a little English. So I didn’t do the translations, a professional did. Etoffe Malicieuse is not well-known in the English-speaking world right now, but I hope that this will change soon, thanks to our patterns and very detailed instructions. Also, if anyone reading this interview is interested in helping Etoffe Malicieuse get more recognition, I would be very happy! Do not hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Q ~ What is your first memory related to lingerie?
Without a doubt: lace. Its fineness, its transparency, its designs ...
Q ~ Do you have a motto / sewing / design rule that you live by?
My goal is to make lingerie sewing accessible to everyone. This is why Etoffe Malicieuse’s brand new YouTube channel has video tutorials. These videos do not just show how to sew: they go further by also showing the mistakes to avoid. I think that any meticulous sewist is able to sew their own underwear. So I try to give people confidence for them to give it a go. I support them as best as I can.
Etoffe Malicieuse’s patterns are very well thought-out: they have a layer system that allows you to choose what you want to print: the size (s), but also with or without seam allowances.
The instructions of the latest patterns have links and QR Codes to videos, as well as many explanatory diagrams, and a lot of advice. Each stitch is given for each step. It's a bit like a taking a workshop at home.
Q ~ And for the question not related to sewing...describe your favourite holiday destination.
Really, it doesn't matter where I go on holidays; it is more important for me to be surrounded by my family and those I love. That being said, I have great memories from certain travels (like Peru).
Many thanks Viviane! I've sewn two patterns from EM and I can attest to the instructions being some of the most highly detailed and interactive that I've ever worked from. The patterns that are currently available in english are: Tralala (tanga brief), Plume (briefs), Boheme (bralette/cami) and Promesse (briefs)
Also a special thanks to Melanie @shorelinecrafter who helped out immensely with the finer points of french to english translation in this interview.
If you are a lingerie pattern designer who would like to be featured in this series then I'd love to hear from you. You can contact me here.