As summer begins to wind down, there are hints of autumn in the light as days grow shorter. Today a big beautiful pile of firewood was delivered, a sure sign that cooler weather will come in spite of the triple digit afternoons. In my studio I am sewing with warm weather in mind, but am musing about resurrecting my tailoring skills and tackling the fabulous new Issey Miyake coat in the latest Vogue pattern offerings. Darker colors are suddenly showing up on my design table and I'm drawn to murky greens, orange and rust.

Our fabric collection keeps expanding with new things arriving all the time. We've added 2 warehouse areas in less than a year, the latest is a small cottage designed to receive the fabric and as a photo studio. I'm sorting and playing with the fabrics according to combos and color stories, then photographing the groupings to post.

These last days of summer are to be savored. Play in your studio. Invent for the pleasure of making. Make space for the new season. I'm off on a driving trip for a week in San Francisco and the Bay Area.

We support your creativity and appreciate your business!

Wishing you a relaxing and creative summer's end from my studio to yours.


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Mission Statement

We introduce creativity into everyday life,
offering inspiration, education, materials, tools and techniques,
resulting in the satisfaction of growing one’s work and experience.
We provide a curated collection of fabrics and products
chosen with a discerning eye.

ArtBarn Team Tilton

Left to right: Roxy, Shelley, Marcy and Beth
ur office hours are Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, 10 AM - 5:30 PM. We're located in a beautiful small valley in southwest Oregon. We all love what we do and are always looking for ways to do it better....and at the end of the day and our days off, we head into our studios to sew because we love that too.

We are a small business, very service oriented and enjoy our direct relationships with our customers. We want you to be satisfied.

We also offer personalized service with customers on the phone helping with matching colors, what goes with what, putting top and bottom fabrics together, planning for a trip or special occasion or the upcoming season.

We offer swatching too. Swatch requests are filled at the end of the day after the current orders have been cut and this is subject to delay. If you have an emergency swatch request, be sure to make that clear. ...and please include your address!

Shipping Costs

Our website has a boilerplate that automatically computes shipping, and it can be wrong because it computes it by each item rather than by actual weight or destination. We've tried to override this to reflect the actual costs it but does not work that way, so instead we work around it. Here is how. If you order via Paypal and the shipping is not right, we issue a refund via Paypal which shows up on your credit card. If you have underpaid, we issue a Paypal request for additional postage, but this happens most often with international customers. If you pay via a Purchase Order, you call in with your credit card #, and we adjust the shipping when we issue the charge.

The site works so well in so many ways, and this is one small glitch in the works. We realize that if you are a new customer the shipping costs can seem off kilter. Shelley and Beth who do the shipping are scrupulous in getting the costs right for our customers. We do add a flat $4 handling charge to each order. We ship via the US Postal Service which keeps costs down a rural customer, they pick up our shipments each day and provide shipping materials, so we use the flat rate boxes whenever possible.
Credit Card Customers and Purchase Orders

Many of our regular customers order using the Purchase Order option, which allows them to use a credit card or keep a credit card on file with us. This is an alternative option to Paypal for ordering online. Purchase Orders facilitate ease and efficiency because there are no refunds, and your order gets to you sooner.

When your order is complete on the website and you check out, click the PURCHASE ORDER option, not PayPal. A message box is included where you tell us how you are planning to pay. Then, give us a call at 541 592 2969, or we can use your card if it is on file.

PLEASE include your phone number in case we need to reach you.
For our international customers:

New postal regulations have recently gone into effect which have an impact on the cost and timing of your shipments. Any piece of mail that is bigger/thicker than a normal letter is subject to the new anti terrorism laws which have tightened up the shipping and tracking of anything going out of the country....and this even includes swatches, so the cost of sending swatches becomes prohibitive unless included in an order, which is easy to do. Every package and parcel must be weighed, measured and sent using a certified shipping service that is connected to the US Postal Service.

On our end, this means much more time is spent with each international shipment, and the international rates have gone up to boot. We love sending packages off to Australia, New Zealand, Norway and Brunei, but please understand that it now takes longer and costs more. We regret that we cannot extend free shipping on CDs and Patterns to our international customers. In the case of our patterns, the shipping will be more than the cost of the pattern. FYI, we are selling out our existing stock of patterns, when they are gone we will not sell patterns on the site...

New Blog

The website blog outgrew it's space and I've gone to Blogger with a new name and look:
Marcy Tilton's Blog for Everyday Creatives An upgrade! You can post comments and sign up to receive blog posts in your e-mail via RSS feed.

As I transition from the
website blog, now called Blog Archives , on the Navigation Bar, I've duplicated a couple of previous put them up and running on the new one for the record, and to get into the flow of how this all works. Thanks to all of you who have responded with encouragement and feedback. Do sign up with your e-mail so you get the posts that way. You can post comments directly on the blog, so keep the ideas and suggestions coming for what you want to see in future blogs.

It's a fun learning curve, and I've been getting tech support from others in the blogging sisterhood. Shams, from
Communing With Fabric has been a particular inspiration. She asked if she could interview me and Diane Ericson. We both said, 'YES' and you can read my portion of the interview on her link. Diane's interview is coming soon.

Katherine Tilton is blogging too. Click on her name to be transported to her blog.

Get the inside scoop on these two variations of Vogue 8839 on the NEW Blog
Click on the photo to take you to the blog post showing construction details.
Click on the photo to learn about the construction details

Fall Pattern Picks

Vogue 1320 by Issey Miyake. This pattern is really tempting me. I can see it working in a wide range of in different fabrics: wool tweed, rain coat fabric, beefy cotton jacquard, velveteen.
Vogue 8813. Comfortable and cozy in a knit, shorten and wear with skinny pants or jeans. I made this as my version of the little black dress in a fluid knit, wear with leggings and sandals now, with boots later on.
Vogue 8817 by Katherine Tilton is on my short list of patterns to sew for fall. Ideal for combining different fabrics, it would also make a beautiful little black (or brown or gray or navy) basic T with the surprise of a touch of sheer or lace in the back.
Vogue 1297, Sandra Betzina's new dress pattern would make a fun, Euro-chic fall jumper in a fluid knit with a plain T underneath, and make the T in a thin burnout knit or mesh or lace.
Vogue 8839. New Marcy pattern so I'm prejudiced, but it is super easy to sew and wear. I've used sweater knits, wool knits, and cotton knits, want to try it in a burnout for a late summer into fall cover up.
Vogue 1052 by Issey Miyake. A beauty...this is on my list too, can see it as a blouse in distinctive cotton or washed silk to wear also as a little jacket over a tank.
Vogue 8757 is a stunning jacket with flattering lines...I think it would be a beautiful vest too.
Vogue 1252 by Tracy Reese has a surplice wrap and is ruched at the waist, very clever and figure flattering design element. Pretty and feminine, calls for a thin drapey knit...this could also be a stunning little black (or brown or gray) dress.

Vogue 1312 by Lynn Mizono, a natural for a little black dress. A wonderful silhouette, but all that volume requires a very fluid fabric like our Black Parisian microfiber
Vogue 8834, Katherine's new blouse is in my design table stack of things to make right away. I'm looking for the right fabric...the pattern calls for a stretch woven: our Pernod is perfect, but I'm also considering a lightweight ponte. Both sides of the fabric will show when the collar turns, so the fabric choice has to be good on both sides.
Vogue 8504. A sleeper tunic. Ideal for any of the burnout knits, for a fall lace, for a knit mesh or sheer woven.
Vogue 8837, by Katherine Tilton is super flattering and an easy to sew skinny pant with cool seaming details. Look at the line drawings on the pattern envelope. On my design table right now!
Vogue 8831. Simple, practical and great looking...a cross between a T and a tunic that will work in a wide range of knits and flatter many different figure types.
Vogue 8777 by Katherine Tilton makes a marvelous layering piece and is fast and easy to sew. Perfect for ponte or a sweater knit...but choose a fabric that is good on both sides, the wrong side will show.
Vogue 8752, is a fun to sew easy fitting jacket that is ideal for travel or for casual everyday running around. I'm seeing it in a beefy cotton or distinctive denim for fall.
Vogue 8843. I made this bag in leather for the pattern envelope and it a very fun project.... great looking, easy to carry & VERY practical with outside and inside pockets, plus a top zipper for security.

Fall Fabric Preview

I'm posting the new fall fabrics bit by bit, often in color themes, so keep coming back to the site. We're also clearing out to make room for the new. You'll find well priced treasures on
Buy of the Week, which changes every week. End Cuts are mostly from our bolt ends, but occasionally from Marcy's stash or if we find a smallish piece that is just too good to pass up, we will pass it on to you. All are priced by the piece. Changes often, sells out often. Our Sale Fabrics are priced to move, and things sell out quickly from this category.
I LOVE to find a good sale and want to pass a good deal on to you!
Click on the image above to go to
Muir Woods: an Italian cotton blend that is perfect for a fall jacket or vest
Maxi Dot: a lightweight rayon/lycra knit that is just plain fun!
Flame: Fabulous quality deep orange ponte from DKNY.
Moroccan Turquoise: Rich color saturated ponte from DKNY.
Chic Cord: Sumptuous printed cotton corduroy from Italy.
Fall Blossoms: Felted sheer sweater knit from Italy. Amazing!
Afton Stripe Ponte: Top quality ponte in a gray and black stripe.
Red Dragon: Cotton/lycra stretch woven. Selling out fast!
Max Mara Rainbow Tweed: Italian & Gorgeous!

On my design table right now...

all is in the air, but it is mid August and the weather is predicted to be hot for some time to come. I love this transitional time for sewing....moving to darker colors, mixing in lighter and heavier weight fabrics, dressing in layers.

I'm resolved to create more kicked back clothes to wear everyday, and to work out colors and layers that work together so I can toss on a cardigan on a cool morning and peel off layers in warm afternoons. Seeking color combos that mix, textures that work together and shapes/silhouettes/styles that flatter and are comfortable.

Leggings...lately when I need a quick sewing fix, I whip up a pair of leggings. My go-to leggings pattern is the
Base Wear One from Christine Jonson.

The dress at right, an example of a late summer/fall dress that I can wear at home, is made in a trio of knits called the
Chez Moi Combo, one of several combos we put together, designed to be used in this popular pattern, Vogue 8813, AKA, the Vintage French House dress.

Construction Notes on the Chez Moi Dress
Making this dress in knits is VERY different from making it in woven. Wish there were hard and fast 'rules', but..... much fabric? I took 1 1/2 yards of each 58" wide stripe, but discovered that 1 1/2 yards was barely enough. I had to piece my dress, not a bad thing, but could be discouraging, so we are making our dress combos with 2 yard cuts of each fabric. All of the combos are selected with an eye to harmonizing colors and scale of stripes and or dots, and so the weights of the fabrics work together. None of the individual fabrics are on sale on the web yet, so the only way to get them for the time being is in these combos, and we're making up a limited number of each color way.
  • Knits s-t-r-e-t-c-h. Even though I used 2 way stretch knits, I still needed to compensate for the stretch caused by the weight of the fabric. I shortened the paper pattern 1 inch front and back above the pocket before cutting. Next time I make this in a knit, I will shorten the pattern 2".
  • I tried on the dress before inserting the center panel (A MUST). It was too long....could hardly reach the pockets!
  • Ripped out the shoulder seams and stitched them 1" deeper. This helped bring up the pockets, and narrowed the sleeve at the hem edge (a good thing), but made the back neck too small.
  • Using the pattern as a guide, I re-cut the back neck.
  • TIP: the center panel is a fitting panel, the measurement on the pattern is only a can make it as wide or narrow as you want, depends on your figure and your bust.
  • My dress was still too big and deep at the underarm. I know this is because of the spongy knit fabric, so I took in at the side seam, going from nothing at the top of the pocket, deepening most at the underarm curve, tapering to nothing at the sleeve hem.
  • Added a casing and tie at the center back to draw it in a bit there too. This is stitched down to hold everything in place.
  • On the pockets I favored the lining to the outside so it would show and look like a trim. Then, the pockets looked too droopy. ..aaargh...
  • So I inserted narrow 1/4" elastic in the pocket facing edge. Easy. Cut a tiny hole on the back side of the pocket, slipped in the elastic, played with how much to gather up (making it the same size on both pockets), and stitching the elastic down by machine. The stitching hardly shows and the elastic slips back in the tiny hole.
  • The length seemed to have grown I played with shortening it which made it look a lot better.
  • I used a 2" deep hem, like how the weight looks and hangs.
  • I used fusible web to secure the sleeve and bottom hem in place for topstitching.

Light as a cloud burnout knit T's...
I've been stitching up light little T-shirts in burnout knits.
This is a rayon (sometimes rayon/cotton) and poly jersey knit that has opaque and semi transparent areas.
A pleasure to wear, I sometimes cut a burnout knit T double in the body to have more coverage,
but this summer I've made two very basic T's in a single layer throughout.
I layer these under sleeveless tunics and dresses...they are surprisingly cool and breathable,
and when the cool weather comes, they will become layering pieces.

Some tips for sewing:

  • Because the fabric is thin, I cut the garment with more ease: add 1 inch to your usual seam allowance at the side seams on the body and sleeve.
  • I made 3/4 sleeves: shortened the long sleeve by 5"
  • Making the neck band can be challenging. My solution: cut the band a LOT wider than you will need (mine was about 6" wide after pressing in the fold. Press in half lengthwise. Using 505 Spray, mask off and spray about 3" width along the fold, then finesse the layers together so they lie smoothly. This stabilizes the band, but having the spray only where you need it makes it easier to handle and to re-position if needed. Trim the band to your desired width and apply with the shoulder seam open.
  • Press up the hem on the front, back and sleeves before sewing the side seams. Allowing enough room to stitch the side seam, fuse the center part of the hem (just along the edge) in place with wonder under, then after sewing the side seams, fuse the remaining portion of the hem and machine stitch, sewing through the wonder under stabilizes the thin fabric and keeps it from stretching.
  • Fit the side seams with plenty of ease so the thin fabric does not tug or pull or stretch on the body.
In our white Zig Zag burnout.
Black Wrought Iron Burnout Knit
In our Baltic Burnout, a gray/black color way that goes with almost everything.
Palladio Burnout Knit

ParisTilton Tours

Magical, Inspiring
and Artful days
in Paris
with Marcy and Katherine Tilton
Fall Right Bank Tour
October 27 - November 3, 2012

Spaces available
Left Bank Spring Tour
May 4 - 11, 2013

Now registering

Click on images for more info...

Design Outside The Lines

We change our theme each year and vary the focus for every retreat. Our theme and focus for 2012: Dressing From the Inside Out
The word is out! Design Outside the Lines retreats are filling up quickly. Marcy and Diane create the kind of events that sewing enthusiasts and design explorers want to attend, and the results are amazing fun which stimulates growth for all. We gather in a beautiful place and set up a working studio. Each retreat has its own special theme and two are alike! If you are a novice who wants to gain skills to make distinctive garments, an experienced professional who yearns to incorporate new material and techniques into your work, or a quilter or artist who desires different perspective or palette, you will come away with new insights into the possibilities of creative fiber. Previous sewing or fiber experience not required.

September 25-29, 2012 - 2 spaces available
Mabel Dodge Luhan House, Taos, New Mexico

February 3-7, 2013
La Casa de Maria, Santa Barbara, California

June 16 - 20, 2013
Five Pine Lodge, Sisters, Oregon

September 25-29, 2013
Mabel Dodge Luhan House, Taos, New Mexico

DOL Details and Registration Information

DOL Sisters:
Pictures tell the story....
At each retreat we create a working studio, with your own work space and time for your own projects; designing, sewing, surface design, pattern play. Each day includes assistance and coaching from Diane and Marcy, and a chance to collaborate with other participants.

Cool Links
With an eye alway cast on the internet, here are links to blogs and websites that inspire, please or provoke. DO send me an e-mail with links to your favorites too:

Communing With Fabric
Blogger Shams just posted an interview with me, so do check it out, but you MUST read her other posts, especially the ones labeled, 'What the Heck". She keeps me in stitches!

Fool 4 Fabric
A favorite. Blogger Margy Houtz has an enviable sense of style, is a beauty, sews fabulous clothes and has a wicked sense of humor. Keeps me coming back again and again, and not just because she sometimes uses my patterns and fabric, but because her ideas and garment keep me going!
A sewing blog with great info, personal style and that vital ingredient, a sense of humor.
Zany Chic
Another blogger with the magic combo of a sense of style blended with a sense of humor. She says, 'Sewing is what I do when I'm cheating on all my other hobbies...'. I say, 'check it out, very fun'.
Amanda's Adventures in Sewing
Amanda does beautiful work and wears her clothes like a dream. I love that her posts include the garments on her, on her dressmaker's mannequin AND on the mannequin INSIDE OUT so you can see the construction. She interprets contemporary style with everyday flair. Note her very wearable dresses and little white jean jacket.
Erica B DIY Style
Erica B is an elegant woman with savvy and courageous sense of style. She sews and fits like a dream. She makes clothes that work on her figure, in her life and right in sync with contemporary fashion. Fun Fun Fun. Edgy too. I'm inspired to go out on the limb myself.....
Coco's Loft
Coco makes great clothes and tells you how she did it. I am particularly inspired by her pattern tweaks on Vogue 1247, a best selling Rachel Comey pattern that is on my short list right now. I'm going to follow her lead and Coco-itize the pattern. Also really like her little black vest, a wardrobe staple for me, newly interpreted.


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