Behind the Scenes with Cal Patch

Cal Patch

Please don’t be too jealous, but we got to hang out with Cal Patch during the filming of her long form pattern drafting class (*cough* it starts April 1 *cough*). If you don’t already know Cal, you should. She’s a sewing, knitting, crocheting, gardening, powerhouse, and is also just about the nicest person ever.

Where do you live?

For the past 5 years, I’ve lived in Accord, NY, which is about 2 hours North of NYC (where I lived for 18 years). It’s a rural small town that couldn’t be any more different from a big city, and I love it!

Do you have any adorable pets/kids/life partners we need to know about?

I thought you’d never ask! First and foremost is my chihuahua Gertie, who turned 15 in January. She’s my sidekick, and is often with me even when I’m teaching classes. Next is Trissy the cat, who excels at living a life of leisure, and 10 boisterous chickens. Oh yes, and there’s also my boyfriend Richard, a British photographer who’s very tolerant of the way my projects tend to take over every room of the house.

How (and when) did you get into sewing?

I played around with sewing in high school, but college is where I learned proper sewing, while studying Fashion Design.

Pattern drafting

What’s the toughest part of sewing your own clothes?

I think for most people it’s finding a pattern that they like, and that will fit them. Bodies are all so different and unique, which makes it challenging to know how something will fit until you make a test version.

What advice would you give people who are just starting to make their own clothes?

Believe that you can do it! It’s really not difficult. People think it’s much harder than it is. Be prepared to make a fit sample or two as part of the process of developing each new pattern, but once you’ve perfected the fit, you can make dozens of garments from a single pattern.

Where do you go for inspiration?

I get inspired by daily life and activities. I like clothes that can take me throughout a day, from working in my studio to pulling weeds in the garden to a dinner out. When I see a niche or void in my wardrobe, I try to fill it. 

How do you make time to craft?

Well, I’m lucky that making is my full-time occupation, so finding time isn’t the problem, but managing it is. I tend to have lots of different projects going at once, which might include crochet, embroidery, spinning, knitting, dyeing or printing in addition to sewing, so I do have trouble prioritizing.

pin cushion

Who are some of your favorite artists?

Andrea Zittel, Clare Rojas, Natalie Chanin, Rei Kawakubo

 What are your favorite materials to work with?

Ah, the materials (i.e. fabrics, yarns and fibers) are one of my favorite aspects! I love wool, linen, silk, hemp, angora…

What is your most favorite thing you’ve ever made?

Oh gosh, I don’t know if I have one favorite thing! Maybe my granny square dress, which was inspired by the vests my grandmother used to make for my sister and me when we were kids in the 70’s…

Be honest – how much fun is it to film these Creativebug classes…or at least getting to hang out in SF for a little while?

It’s TOTALLY FUN! i love coming out and filming. It’s hard work, but also fun and rewarding.

Cal filming

Best and worst or hardest parts of filming a class:

Best part: I love working with all the talented and lovely peeps of Creativebug! Seriously, since most of the time I’m working at home in my studio for weeks on end, it’s really fun to come in and work with a group, laughing and being silly in between the serious stuff, and all trying to achieve the same end result.

Hardest part: Trying to act natural and clearly share the information that is so ingrained in me, with two cameras in my face and a strange man leaning on my shoulder, and someone else dangling a microphone over my head,and maybe two more people watching and coaching!

Do you like being in front of the camera?

Yes! It’s a little awkward, but I’m so in love with the idea that by filming my classes, I can teach people all over the world without having to travel all the time.

Where can we stalk you online?

Everywhere! Please hunt me down!

my website:

my Etsy shop:





Below is a sneak peek of Cal’s class and if you’re really excited about it, sign up here.