Liesl Gibson on learning how to draft patterns: “I’ll never forget sitting in my first patternmaking class. The teacher started doing a demonstration and the light bulb went off for me. It just opened a universe for me.”
After starting a career in publishing and finance, Liesl Gibson returned to school and earned a degree in fashion design from New York's Fashion Institute of Technology. Before having a child in 2005, she worked as a designer for Tommy Hilfiger and Ralph Lauren.
While staying home with the baby, Liesl began designing her daughter's clothing. "People were asking if they could buy the patterns for the dresses I was making," Liesl says. "One thing led to another, and I had a new career." In 2008 Liesl launched Oliver + S, a new brand of sewing patterns for children's clothing. Today Liesl also designs a line of Oliver + S fabric. She published her first book, Oliver + S Little Things to Sew in 2011.
In 2011 Liesl also created Lisette, a line of sewing patterns and fabric for women's apparel that is now available at Jo-Ann stores in the USA and Spotlight stores in Australia. In 2012 Liesl debuted Straight Stitch Society, a collection of patterns for gifts and accessories. The brand's tagline, "Life is hard. Sewing is easy." expresses its quirky and sometimes irreverent personality.