Five Questions With Common Stitch

Written by Charlie and Ali
on 12 June, 2019

A sewing side-business turned success story, we are so thrilled to welcome Common Stitch to Finders Keepers Brisbane. An independent sewing pattern and clothing brand dedicated to the act of slow learning, slow fashion and sharing knowledge. For those interested in ethical fashion this is one stall to slow down for. Get to know Ali and Charlie, and get excited about the future of sustainable clothing!

Tell us about your business Common Stitch, what is your background and how did your business come to be?

Common Stitch started when Charlie and myself (Ali) were chatting about sewing our own clothing and the lack of sewing patterns available that suited our personal aesthetics, we both ended up having to draft our own.

We then started talking about side-business ideas we both wanted to launch; Charlie was thinking of starting a sustainable clothing label and I was looking into starting a digital dress making pattern brand, so we decided to join our ideas and skills together and that is when Common Stitch was born! We both learnt to sew when we were young, and noticed a large absence of these skills in our generation. Charlie studied fashion design and I studied Interior Design + Graphic Design, making it the perfect pairing.

You’re involved in all aspects of your business. Can you tell us a little bit about the connection you feel to Common Stitch not only designers but also creators too?

Every time we see a customer sew one of our patterns, it is so rewarding and exciting to see. We love seeing how people can take a pattern, and turn it into their own customised garment by using different fabrics and notions than the ones we use. It encourages and inspires other people to do the same. It is our favorite part of the day!

What are you most looking forward to at the upcoming Brisbane Finders Keepers Market. Is there a Finders Keepers fashion label you admire?

We are so excited to see all the other local brands, we are big supporters of local, small and ethical businesses. We especially love Ernest & Joe, Honeybee Wraps and Posie candles!

We believe that when you purchase slow fashion you should be able to see the whole supply chain

Common Stitch is all about slow learning and sustainable fashion choices, why is this so important these days?

We believe that when you purchase slow fashion you should be able to see the whole supply chain – who designed it, who cut the fabric, who was the seamstress, who snipped the threads, where do the fabrics / notions come from, who packages it up. And this is the same with our sewing patterns. We already make them for our completed garments, so why not offer them to our customers as well, we love to be as transparent as possible. We understand that it can sometimes be hard to obtain ethical / sustainable fashion and that everyone has different budgets, so we try to cater for as many people as possible (through our sewing patterns, sewing kits and completed garments). We love to support other slow fashion businesses and we love how transparent fashion is becoming.

What future goals do you have for Common Stitch?

We have just started doing a few workshops, teaching beginner and intermediate classes. We find this so rewarding, being able to help people learn the skills to make their own garments, sustainably and ethically, whilst bringing like-minded people together. Our future plans include more workshops, more sewing patterns and beginner sewing courses.

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