Hey, my name is Tanja Merten, I’m currently 24, and I’m living in a beautiful city in the South of Germany (Ulm). I moved here five years ago to study, and I now have a degree to become a grammar school (high school) teacher in mathematics and biology.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve been drawing and crafting with all kinds of materials – that’s always been my favourite hobby. Paper, wood, fabric, metal or wire alike, I’ll work with everything as long as it’s about taking a construct of my imagination and making it a reality. It’s just always amazing to see my wildest fantasies assume shape, thanks to some (not even complicated) crafts!
How I Started Sewing
Sewing became a special craft for me at the age of 16, when my mother taught me how to use the sewing machine and helped me to create the carnival costume of my dreams. It made me believe that I could create anything I had ever dreamed of in a garment, even if it weren’t available anywhere. From then on, my sewing ideas exploded in number. I started working on every idea that fascinated me, and I worked with all kinds of unconventional materials. I hadn’t discovered sewing patterns yet, so I drafted all the patterns myself or cloned my clothes. I learned a lot those days just by trial and error.
One lucky day I discovered that there was this huge community online, all dedicated to sewing – I got immersed immediately. Soon I found lots of fabulous sewing patterns, new techniques and great tutorials. All this helped me to streamline my learning process tremendously and made me learn many, many new skills. Loving challenges, I practised sewing every type of garment I could think of and worked with every kind of fabric I found. Despite having access to sewing patterns now, I still drafted many things myself or even altered existing patterns.
Since I stumbled upon the sewing community and with it independent pattern houses, I’ve admired the profession of a sewing pattern designer. I knew that as soon as I had the chance to switch careers, this would be the path I’d choose. So in summer 2018, I decided to take the leap and extend my greatest hobby and favourite creative outlet into a job. From then on I’ve been working on the side on drafting and refining patterns, creating collections and building the home of my business, this website.
This is more than just a sewing company to me – Glasshouse Patterns gives me the opportunity to pass on the valuable skill of dressmaking, help other people to create the garments of their dreams and introduce new people to this wonderful hobby. It is my mission to make people feel excited about their wardrobes again, help them to sew garments they feel great in, get them to know their bodies better and therefore increase body positivity.
About My Patterns
If you’d describe your style as a mix of feminine, playful, cute, modern and elegant my patterns are for you! All of my patterns are designed to make you look and feel good. The design lines will always compliment a variety of body shapes and enhance the best parts of them. The patterns are also made to be practical, they’re normally wearable with a usual bra. It is my goal to design garments that are trendy and modern but still timeless enough to be modern 5 years later.
Versatility in my opinion is hugely important, so all patterns will have multiple variations. Those of course can be mixed and matched – and beyond the variations in the patterns I’ll be sharing further customizing ideas and step by step tutorials on the blog to help you make the most out of each pattern and customize it for your style!