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Parlez Vous Fit for Art?


Our French connection, my daughter Anna, has just about finished the French translation of the Tabula Rasa Jacket Pattern.  We are looking forward to welcoming our French speaking sewing friends into the Fit for Art community.  In the meantime, we hope to find a few Francophiles to test our translation.  Do you speak “garment sewing French” or do you have a friend with French language skills who sews?  Please share the contact information with us privately at

Because there are no photos of this momentous occasion, I will share some pictures of Pamiers, the little town in the Ariège region of France where Anna teaches English.  I will also tell you about the days in December, June, and October, when we did serious work on the translation.

Our favorite coffee and tea spot.
Our favorite coffee and tea spot.


Armed with other pattern translations and lists of sewing terms, Anna started to work on the translations.  She has done a number of translations including academic papers and movie scripts, so this was not a new process for her.  However, there were several words and concepts she was struggling to say in French.  It probably does not surprise you that these were the ideas that we think make our patterns and other products so special.  Our focus on fit and our desire for every woman who sews with our pattern to find a comfortable fit were challenging ideas to capture in French.

The best carry out pizza.
The best carry out pizza.

Our hope that each stitcher will find her unique style and individual expression as she makes Tabula Rasa jackets also seemed hard to put into words.  But we grappled honestly with the concepts and the available vocabulary; we hope our testers find the Fit for Art spirit in the instructional text and design information.

A cute restaurant around the corner.
A cute restaurant around the corner, Le Patio.


There are phrases that still elude us, most especially fitting terms like “Horizontal Balance Line” and seam finishing terms for Hong Kong finish and bound seams.  We were most amused to find that the translation for French seam is “Couture Anglais” (English seam).  How ironic is that!

Taking a break at dinner.
Taking a break at dinner.


When I visited the Quilt En Sud show in Biarritz in June, Anna helped me meet some lovely ladies in France who have agreed to test the pattern for us.  Click here to read more about Quilt En Sud and see more photos.  As I mentioned before, we would love to line up some additional French language testers here in the US or Canada, too.  We appreciate any help you can give us as we move Fit for Art forward.


Bonne Couture or Happy Sewing, RAE

2 thoughts on “Parlez Vous Fit for Art?

  1. I’m guessing that you have used the French versions of Vogue and Burda published with/in the English patterns. Burda’s instructions are skimpy, but might still be helpful.

    Good luck with your project!

    1. Thanks Jan, Because we don’t write our instructions in the usual sewing-speak, they were somewhat helpful! RAE

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