Ok, let’s fast forward from our photo shoot to midsummer, when all patterns and written material were ready, photos edited, and the book was in its first stage, sent to us for first proof read! We did this on our midsummer holiday, when Saara was relaxing at her friends’ summer cottage, and Laura was enjoying Copenhagen. The two of us met in Lisbon, from where we continued to Lagos for a surf camp. In the bus (which we had to take because we missed our train), we put together both of our notes from the first proof read of the book. Altogether that must have been at least ten hours of work for each, plus the 4-hour bus drive (in the below pic, Saara is snacking on chocolate while working on the book in the bus). We had to make a very quick transfer from one bus to another at Lagos, since our first bus had left the station late of schedule, and when our bus arrived to the bus station of Lagos, we ran to the next bus. We made it of course, and arrived to our surf camp eventually. It was late and we were hungry and tired, so we decided to get settled in our bungalow, have something to eat, and then send the pdf with all the notes back to our publisher.
At which point, we obviously noticed, that we had no computer what so ever and instead, had lef it on the first bus (you can only imagine the break down). Well, long story short, we did manage to retrieve our computer from Portimao, two days later (HUGE thanks to the kind people at our surf school for making all the calls and driving us to Portimao), and sent our notes only two days after deqadline. As you can imagine, it was pretty stressful, and the pic below where we seem to be relaxing at our camp’s hammock, doesn’t really tell the full story :D.
The rest of the summer was quite busy with all book related stuff, editing patterns for the pattern sheets, proof read after proof read, and fine-tuning everything. In fact, we had to cancel the rest of our summer holidays to get everything wrapped up (Saara is still waiting for her summer holiday to start, Laura was lucky enough to have hers in September!)
Autumn came and our publication date got closer and closer! We received the first copy of our book fresh from the printer, wrapped in sparkling wrappin paper and confetti (by the lovely commissioner of out book, Harriet), and that was one of the best days of the whole year! Seeing something that you have worked so hard for, turned into an actual thing (and our names on the frickin’ cover)!
While we were anxiously waiting for the release date, our cutting table exploded. It had nothing to do with the book, but funnily, that first copy of the book of ours, was on the cutting table when this event occured, and it survived the explosion without a scratch! As you can see in the photo below, it’s still on the table even though the table has turned into crumble. Luckily too, both of us were out of office when the explosion happened.
The first-ever-copy of the book didn’t survive our book launch party though. We held the party here in our office a few weeks back, and accidentally managed to sell the first copy, that was supposed to be just for browsing, to someone! We only hope that they don’t mind that it might be a bit shabby, and missing the plastic sleeve <3.
One of the best moments of this book journey so far was when we took the trip to London to see our publisher, and also saw and signed this mountain of books! That was the first time that we sort of started to comprehend that all this was real, and the book was actually goin to be published.
We hope you have enjoyed the read! If there’s anything you would like to know about the book and about making it, please leave a comment!
Laura & Saara
Our book Breaking the Pattern was released last month! The process of making it took a little over a year of hard work from the two of us, and from many other people involved. That year was quite eventful, and has definitely included lots of funny incidents, both ups and downs. This blog post series will hopefully give you a little peek into that journey!
We started designing the collection in October 2017. The designs came together quite easily, even though this was the first time we made a collection that wasn’t designed around a specific theme, like previous Named collections. It also differed from our regular pattern line in another way – we had decided to make this selection much more modifiable than any of our other collections, with more variations to one pattern (the Ruska-bunch, for example, has five variations), and the possibility to move pattern pieces from one pattern to another.
Of course the book’s collection was also much wider than our normal line, which usually has around ten patterns. Originally we had planned to make 10 patterns with 19 variations for the book, but while sewing the samples, we decided to add one more variation, the top version for the Solina triplet! This brought our collection into a much nicer round number of 20 patterns. The photo above is our first drawn plan for the whole collection, and as you can see, there are only 19 styles and the Solina top is missing (this sketch is actually still taped to the wall of our studio).
Once the patterns were ready, and the samples had been sewn, it was time to have our photoshoot. It took place in the very cold and snowy Helsinki, in the middle of March. All the snow had pretty much melted already when me and Saara were scouting for shooting locations just a few days before the photoshoot, but as soon as the week that our shoot was scheduled for arrived, it started snowing like it’s never snowed before. Fortunately our models Vanessa and Jessica were very weatherproof, as well as the rest of the crew, including our loyal photographer Arto Markkanen and make-up artist Jannica Stelander, and Harriet and Claire from our publisher Quadrille.
The fotoshoot lasted for four busy days, during which we took studio photots, editorial photos outdoors, and technical photos for the sewing skill -sections of the book in our office. Our photoshoots have never been quite as hectic as these four days, but luckily we managed to get everything wrapped up in time! Somehow, we managed to break two mirrors during the process too.
We had brought lots of plants to use as props for the photos, and on one of the studio days Claire – who is behind the beautiful design of the book btw – noticed that the architecture office next to Arto’s studio had some beautiful big plants in their window. So, off we went and asked them if we could borrow the magnificent plants for some studio photos! And they very kindly let us take their precious plants to our shoot. It was quite horrific moving the fragile things into the basement studio, but luckily we succeeded without harming them (we have seen the plants in the architecture studio’s window later and they seem to be feeling quite all right).
Stay tuned for our next post for more behind the scenes stories for Breaking the Pattern!
Laura & Saara
Our book Breaking the Pattern (see it HERE!) was finally released just a week ago, and we couldn’t be more happy and proud of it! To celebrate the publication day, we organized a little launch party at our office in Helsinki. We are so happy and grateful that many people came to say hello to us and to see the book, and our little office was quite packed with friends, collaborators and people from the Finnish sewing and crafting scene!
Some of our party-people were already wearing their freshly-made garments that had been sewn using the patterns in the book. One of them was Katja of the With My Hands – Dream blog in her awesome Ruska dress! Take a peek at her graphic dress in instagram. The bodice fabric was a small scrap find from Eurokangas, so she didn’t have enough fabric for the sleeves – which is great since the tweed-looking sleeves (that are actually knit fabric) make a great contrast for the black-and white dress!
Some were wearing other Named classics, and one of them was Essi in her velvety Gemma & Ninni combo! Her fabric was also a scrap from Eurokangas (Eurokangas remnant bins are known to be quite legendary here in Finland). Do pay a visit to Essi’s IG as well. Of course other me-made garments were spotted too, and if our London book launch earlier this month was all about animal prints, this one in Helsinki was blooming with floral prints!
We were happy to serve a vegan snack menu sponsored by Fiksuruoka.fi. If you haven’t heard of them before, Fiksuruoka is a grocery web shop that sells groceries and supplies that are for some reason otherwise going to waste. Basically items that are close to expiration date, or that have packaging that is being renewed.
Fiksuruoka’s mission is to save all that edible food from going to rubbish bins and instead sell it at a discounted price, which is pretty smart (translated into English, ’Fiksuruoka’ actually means ’smart food’) and earth-conscious! That is also why we at Named wanted to have our party menu from Fiksuruoka, we see that their philosophy matches quite well with our own. From them we received a generous delivery of crackers, salty corn treats, chocolates, toffee and lemonade together with non-alcoholic sparkling wine, all vegan and all super delicious.
Thank you everyone who attended our party and for all of you who have already got – or are planning to get – our book!
Kisses and hugs,
Authors Laura & Saara Huhta