Jennie Chancey

I launched Sense & Sensibility Patterns in 1998 with my original Regency Gown pattern. I never dreamed I’d one day have over two dozen patterns on the market and would be leading tours yearly in the UK! Enjoy my blog, and let me know if you’d like to travel with us!

Moving to ePatterns (but paper will still be an option!)…

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I can still remember the first time I saw an ePattern available for sale. I shook my head, thinking, “No way! Who would want to piece together all those tiles by hand?” I was sure paper patterns would always outsell the “e” versions, but I created the downloadable version of each of my patterns all the same to cater to the instant gratification crowd. Well, lo and behold, we have now reached a point where ePatterns outsell the print versions by almost 8 to 1! This has an impact on how we do business, but I still can’t bear to think of parting with paper patterns forever, so let me tell you how we are moving forward in 2017 and beyond. Read more…

The Story of a Pattern…

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Jennie in the classic shirt dress, holding her baby boy.

In early 2010, while hunting for retro-style dresses that I could wear while nursing my baby daughter, I found a deadstock 1950s shirt dress for sale on eBay. Incredibly, I snagged it for only $25, and it was a perfect fit. I really loved the style with its curved collar, self-cuffed sleeves, and pleated skirt. I’d been telling myself for a couple of years that it was time to branch into 1950s patterns, but I hadn’t been struck with inspiration for a new design until I got and wore that dress. Read more…

Ladies’ Classic 1950s Wardrobe Pattern

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Ladies' Classic 1950s Wardobe pencil skirt and blouse with peplum

I’ve pulled together my favorite design elements from this decade–the full skirt and the demurely tailored pencil skirt; the fitted bodice and tailored sleeves; the curvy collar and the wide pointed collar; the detachable peplum and the removable dickie. You can mix and match to your heart’s content and create an entire closet full of flattering outfits that take you from relaxing on the patio in cool gingham to stepping out in sophisticated glamour with all the stops pulled out. Thanks to the inspiration of customer Denise B., I’ve also added a brand new set of instructions for a breathtaking petticoat a lá Alice Lon!

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(Looking for the paper version rather than the ePattern? Purchase from one of our many retailers worldwide!) Read more…

Update: Beautiful jewelry for word lovers!

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Elizabeth and Darcy earrings by Liz Turner

If you follow my Instagram account, you’ve already seen a sneak peek of this beautiful jewelry, designed and made by Liz Turner from books that have fallen into disrepair and are destined for the rubbish bin. I love how Liz chooses words that follow a theme or come from classic literature, like the “Elizabeth” and “Mr Darcy” earrings you see at right. She can even find the words of your choice in a dictionary or another volume and custom-make your own special jewelry, including pendants to wear as single pieces Read more…

Update: “She Coloured” Jane Austen Coloring Book Winner!

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She Coloured cover by Amanda Kastner

Amanda has now produced a simply charming coloring book, featuring 25 of Jane Austen’s most famous quotes in whimsical settings with delightful hand-drawn ink illustrations.The 8.5″ x 11″ book is printed on smooth white 65# paper, which is excellent for colored pencils, pens, markers, and even light watercolor washes! To celebrate Amanda’s achievements, I am hosting a giveaway of a copy of “She Coloured,” and I’ve also got a special coupon code you can use in Amanda’s online shop! Read more…

Retro Maternity Style

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Reproduction 1950s maternity smock

When it comes to retro maternity style, I may not be an expert, but I think sheer experience has to count for something! I’ve lived through two decades of maternity wear, beginning with my first pregnancy in 1996, when I was just starting out as a seamstress-for-hire and making lots of Regency gowns. Read more…

ePattern Video Tutorials: Updated 2017

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If you’re new to ePatterns, you’ll want to watch this three-part ePattern video series on how to put together your pattern sheets before you take the plunge. ePatterns are printable PDF files that create “tiles” you piece together to create your master pattern sheets. With a little effort, you’ll be on your way! Read more…