Sunday, June 8, 2014

Welcome to Sewing-land. We're thrilled to have you!

Well it's been a few days.  I was out of town for the LMNOP sale that I help my friend set up a couple times a year, and then I got back and have been playing crazy hectic catch up.  But I'm getting there, lol.  I leave for New York next week to visit my family and am taking my serger with me, sending some fabric ahead, and my mom has a sewing machine.  So even though I won't have MY sewing room, I'll still get to do a lot of sewing, I hope.  AND I'm hoping to take a little shopping venture into the city to see if I can find any cool fabric.

But, for the task at hand.  This is something sort of new for me, so I am trying to word things as I go.  Sewing land can be harsh.  Women can be harsh in general, though.  Remember, my background isn't in a very female heavy world...Most of my friends in high school were guys,  I went to a school with a very low number of women, I chose a branch (of the military) that was male dominant... Really, I have a pretty tenuous grasp on the female psyche.  That being said, I have this *idea* that we should support one another.  That we should stand by each other, and help one another to be better.  And here this idea was born...

Welcome to my intro to what will be a hopefully fun series of posts to introduce some of the new sewists joining our ranks.  The women who saw our creations, watched their mothers and grandmothers sew, and decided they wanted to try.  These women are new to this, and deserve our respect and our assistance.

So to start off, hi! I'm Alyssa.  In case you didn't know...  Here is a picture of one of my first projects...
This picture makes me feel old, ha!  I was 15 here I think.  The very nice young man was a year older and very graciously invited me to his prom.  I was sick and tired of showing up to dances and having at least one other random girl with a dress similar to or the same as mine, so I decided to make this one.  Do you see the pretty sequin trim?  I was hand sewing it on to the hemline during my free period the day of the dance.  Hmm... that says something about my history of procrastination, doesn't it? 

Fast forward <bleep> years.  Inara was in love with the misfit toys, so I made her this (random Simplicity pattern?) and realized that in the years prior I had done a little sewing here and there.  But really, when you're in the Army, anything beyond fixing a hem and sewing on buttons just isn't necessary. 
There were a couple Halloween costumes, and random paper pattern dresses in here...I converted my jeans into maternity pants, made a couple blankets, etc.  Then Connor came along, and I was getting bored with paper patterns.  A friend suggested I try PDFs... here is my first PDF pattern creation...
Hee hee.  I bet you were expecting clothes too.  I signed up to do a Mug Rug Swap in a quilting group, and then realized I wasn't actually sure what I wanted to make.  I found this pattern on Craftsy, and I figured... for $2.50, if it was terrible, it would be okay.  Turns out, it wasn't terrible at all. It was great little pattern that was easy to follow, and I decided to splurge and buy a clothing PDF pattern.  Mind you, at this point I didn't know any designers, I wasn't in any of the pattern groups, and I didn't realize that designers had *free* patterns so you could see what their patterns were like.

How cute was tiny Connor?  The romper was actually made quite a bit before this picture, but the other ones I have of him in it, it's WAY big.  These are the first two PDF clothing patterns I bought.  The romper is reversible, but the shop it was from is randomly gone, so I won't link it, but the shorts are the Too Cute Ruched Shorts from Cole's Corner and Creations and I use them quite a bit still.  Randomly both experiences turned out positive, and I was totally hooked on PDFs. 

Look, since then even my photography has improved!   I learned to sew on paper patterns, and I often find myself glossing over PDFs when I make them (Not for tests! Those I follow step by step!!), but sometimes I grab a pattern that has a technique that I'm not familiar or comfortable with, and as I read the carefully explained and in depth instructions, I can't help but smile.  It's like tiny little sewing lessons right on my screen.  And if I get lost or confused, I know I can shoot a message to any of the wonderful designers I've met and they will always help.

So stay tuned please, and check out the lovely sewists that I will be featuring and welcome them to our little world.  Let's do all we can to make them feel at home, and develop and grow their talents to make them the best they can be.

And, for them, I have a special surprise at the end... but you'll have to keep reading too, as it will be a surprise for all of you!

Oh, I want to put a special thank you here too...  To Laura M. for helping me find the inspiration to do this.  And to Kim O. and Laura H. for being my ever faithful editors (apparently I need more help then spell check can give me). 


  1. oooh - I get the 1st comment? Well - yay girl!!Terrific move.

  2. Love this concept and hearing your story. That is actually a pretty big first sewing project there! Can't wait to hear about the sewists that you are featuring and hearing their stories too!

  3. Loved hearing your sewing story!

  4. Great blog and great idea! Sewing is great and a continual learning experience and everyone needs encouraged. :)