Marais Design Journey

Travel memories are always popping up in our minds and it’s always fun to look back in time when Google photos prompts us!  Our design story for the Marais is filled with personal memories and lives well traveled, and of course it’s namesake: a love of immersing ourselves in the experience of traveling to Paris!

Let’s call the dramatic back with cross-over pleat ‘The Lesley’ as it really showcases her personal style, flair & design aesthetic that spans her early years as a designer in South Africa.  This pleat is something she has played with in many designs across the years, and we just knew that it was meant to be showcased in our first pattern design together.

The Marais is designed with fit, comfortable travel threads & classic style in mind.  For as long as I can remember, I’ve packed a collared shirt with a relaxed fit in a soft fabric in my suitcase.  I’ve worn a classic white shirt to work in London with black leggings & boots like it was my uniform, styled double denim (before it was a thing, I’m going with it!) with a light denim blue collared shirt whilst wandering through Paris on our first trip there, and sported a relaxed collared shirt on Capitola beach.
That’s just a glimpse, so with all this in mind, the Marais was realised!
Our hope for our first sewing pattern that we release is to showcase our industry knowledge of patternmaking & teaching, giving our makers a well-fitting garment that is one of their most loved & worn shirts for years to come.
We love that the fit is celebrated across both our B-Cup and D-Cup sizing, with consideration of the positioning of our darts, the size & drape of our cross-over pleat, a slightly relaxed fit & including a variety of classic and feminine views to really create the  Marais your way.

One of the things I most love about our Marais design is that one shirt can span generations of style.  At almost 70 & almost 40, both Lesley & I have our own unique style.  Designing a collared shirt that flatters and highlights that age and size are just numbers, but celebrates that classic style is infinite.
Marais builds your sewing skills with attention to details like the professional finish on our pockets and the way the D-Cup dart is sewn with consideration of flattering a fuller bust.
A beginner can use a simple cotton to create a beautiful shirt and will walk away with instructional knowledge of pivoting for collars and pockets, topstitching and edgestitching, buttonholes & burrito method yokes!  It really is a dream to sew, and I may have teared up when I made our first toile as Lesley’s patterns piece together beautifully.

We are beyond excited for our first pattern release, and sharing it as a digital pattern that can be accessed globally is definitely the sewing community we feel a strong connection with!
We hope you, our global makers, enjoy the Marais collared shirt as much as we enjoyed designing, toiling, fitting & digitising it!

Let your traveling threads roam on adventures,
JB x
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