Monday, February 5

29 Questions on my 29th Birthday

1. How long have you been sewing? 
My mom taught me as a little girl and I did it on and off through high school. In college, maxi skirts got really popular and I decided I could just make them, so I got back into sewing drafting my own skirts. Then my brother started dating his now wife, and she was studying clothing construction, and taught me how to make patterns off my clothes I had and liked, and how to find decent fabric at thrift stores. We would meet weekly and sew together and she ignited the passion! I started an etsy business in 2015 for kids clothes but still wasn't sewing for myself using patterns, just copying my clothes. In late 2015 I discovered pdf patterns and now here I am!

2. You do lots of alterations, where did you learn how to them?

Youtube mostly, or other sewing bloggers/instagramers, really. I have never taken a proper sewing class or read a sewing book. Just sewn for myself a lot and realized what problems I am having and then I look up what adjustment I need.

3. How do you know if you need a specific adjustment?

The more you sew, the more you learn about your body. You realize what it is that is uncomfortable about your clothes. Shirt falling back and choking you? Google that problem and learn you need a forward shoulder adjustment. Shirt too restricting when reaching your arms forward? Need a broad back adjustment. Getting a camel toe in your jeans? Need a round pubis adjustment. Lots of extra fabric above you bum in your favorite knit tee? Ask on facebook and learn you need a sway back. Yep. Thats how I learned. I only started making proper adjustments to my clothes beginning of last year. You can do it!

4. What types of fabric are your favorite to sew with?

For tops, drapey wovens with some weight behind them. I love rayon twill, rayon challis, and poly crepe.

I'm not huge into knit tees but I prefer tri blend jersey (cotton poly rayon) or very occasionally brushed poly as its drapey but not clingy like rayon spandex. I have heard merino wool jersey is incredible but I have never tried it because like i said, I don't do many knit tops.

For bottoms I like brushed twill, and cone mills s-gene denim

5. Good places to buy patterns for kids, tween, teens?
Best tween pattern designer is hands down Hey June Handmade! They have an entire juniors line of knit tees, woven dresses, rompers, jackets, etc.

Most designers have an XS or XXS size which converts easily to teens who have outgrown the junior sizes but aren't fully in women's sizes.

 Love Notions is another great place to look because they have a ton of variety and every size from 2T on up to 3XL, so you'll probably find something you like.

6. Go-to fabric stores?
Raspberry Creek Fabrics has been a favorite for years. Most people know them for their affordable custom knits, but I love them or their crazy affordable woven fashion fabrics. Solid rayon challis is usually $6.50, Robert Kaufman Mammoth plaid flannel is $7.99. They also carry Art Gallery, Birch, Rifle Paper co, etc., ALWAYS for the best price around. I promise. They also carry stretch twill, denim, you name it. Plus their amazing cotton spandex french terry that so many love.

Other shops I love:

Blackbird Fabrics has every luxury fabric you can imagine and even though they are in Canada they ship USPS so shipping is affordable. I will say their fabrics cost quite a bit. So I haven't bought tons, but my new favorite fabric, poly crepe, comes from them. I want it in every solid color!

Imagine Gnats has flipping amazing sweat shirting. They have lots of other stuff too obviously but they've been the first place I've found that sells high quality stretch sweatshirtings.

Fabric Genie is my favorite for rayon twill (probably my all time favorite fabric). Its super cheap from here, but shipping costs more, so it comes out to like $8.50 a yard which is still great.

7. What do you take pictures with?
A canon Rebel t3i that my husband got me or my birthday 5 years ago, with a portrait lens he got me 2 years later that I can't remember the name of..haha. My husband takes my photos, sometimes I use a tripod, or one of my local sewing friends!

8. How do you sew with kids?
 My son naps for about 2 hours while my daughter has some sort of quiet, independent time so I sew then, and after they go to bed at 7.

9. How do you take photos with kids?
Its chaos. Pandemonium. I'll be honest. But they are cute photo bombers:) When I meet up with sewing friends we get all our kids to play together while we photograph.

10. Do you plan your sewing or wing it?
Mostly wing it, but I have a plan sometimes. Like with the coat making party I planned on making Lola and Clare, and then added in the Sarah shirt in January as well because it was shirt month at Indie sew.

11. I only have a basic machine, can I sew what you sew? 
YES! I sew on a cheap basic Brother XR1300. And I've sewn jeans and wool coats and buttons up and slinky slippery fabrics and done zippers and a billion button holes. You can do it!

12. Favorite thing you've ever made?
Its like a four way tie. My ginger jeans, my sarah shirt, my modal chambray cheyenne, and my clare coat. And right now I'm working on the new, about to be released Joy Jacket, and I think it might make my favorite makes list too...

13. I'm afraid of sewing knits, where should I start?
I started sewing knits before I knew I should been afraid of it and it was no problem! Just go slow, don't pull on your fabric, and you can do it on a regular machine! I have a serger now and I'll admit it makes is a cinch. I have the Brother 1034D.  I got it 3 or 4 years ago on Amazon for $150. I used for two years of an etsy shop sewing like a crazy person and for all my own sewing. Never had 1 issue. Its a work horse.

A good pattern to start with would be the Hey June Union St Tee or Lane raglan. Great knit tee patterns!

14. I only sew knits, wovens intimidate me, how do I get past that? 
Just go for it! I was actually afraid of wovens too, after sewing exclusively knits for so long. I thought the fit would be a lot more challenging but I actually don't really find it much harder and I like my woven garments so much more! My favorite woven tops are the cheyenne tunic, the Hadley top, and the sarah shirt.

15. PDF or paper?
PDF cause I love having the digital copy. If all paper patterns came with the digital form too I'd probably buy that. But my kids ruin my paper patterns when they find them so that doesn't work for me.

16. What other hobbies do you have?
I love to read (more like listen to audio books) and exercise. My gym time is precious and I let almost nothing interrupt it. The kids like the Kid care so I go even morning for 90 minutes. My favorite things to do there are swim laps, high fitness and run. I spin twice a week too but I don't really enjoy that one haha. Side note-I used to coach a swim team and run cross country way back in the day.

17. Go-to designer?
My favorite designers are Hey June and Grainline Studio (granted I find GS patterns very pricey and wait for sales.) I actually only have 3 of GS patterns (Hadley and Farrow dress and the cascade duffle which I haven't made yet,) but I wear farrow and hadley all the time.

18. Sew in day or night?
Both. I guess I kind of answered this above about sewing with kids.

19. What to do you do while you sew?
Usually listen to Harry Potter, another book or a podcast. I actually have a long list of other books I want to listen to so I'm going to reserve the audio though Overdrive.

20. Favorite podcasts?
Love to Sew, Happier, Bold New Mom, and Young House Love.

21. Do you watch netflix while sewing? Have a show to recommend? 
Rarely. I prefer listening to something. But I started watching Blue Bloods occasionally with my husband and I'm liking that.

22. Sewing snacks?
I don't have any. Just usually a glass of water that gets shared between me and the iron hahaha

23. What machines do you have?
My aforementioned machine and serger and also a Brother 2340CV

24. What do I actually need in order to start sewing?
A machine (yours, or a borrowed one) some pins and scissors! Then just the materials for your project -thread fabric etc!

25. How did you meet sewing friends, I don't people who sew.
I got really lucky. I live in Utah and there are a lot of us here. I met my first sewing friend through finding Rasperry creek Fabrics. I didn't realize at first that they were local to me but I figured it out pretty quickly and met the lovely owner Diana that way. Then she schedules a few meet up each year for local sewists at the park. We bring our kids and lunch and get to talk sewing!

Then honestly, I met my bff Rachel of Hello.littlefish at the park! I was there with another friend (that I also met at the park!) and she happened to kind of recognize rachel, and so they started talking. Then we realized we were both pregnant with boys and she sewed and I sewed and we were basically neighbors. And the rest is history.

Then I just had a bunch of instagram friends, until last year in April a bunch of us got together when tons of people came into town for SNAP conference and I met so many others. Sewing friends really are the best, but there is no formula for how to meet them...I mean I met Rachel at the park...

26. Do you clean up after every project?
I try but I'm not perfect. WE just moved from Arizona and there I had my own sewing room so I was bad at cleaning up. Now I share an office with my husband so I am a lot better now.

27. How big is your pattern stash?
120 patterns. But I will say I have been a pattern tester for almost 2 years so I have lots from that and tons are kid patterns. I have sewn 70% of my patterns.

28. How big is your fabric stash?
Big. Ok I had plans of counting but since a bunch of it is big totes because of our move and the smaller space I haven't ....

29. A random fact we don't know about you?
I used to be a nerdy matching band kid who played the flute for 7 years. I quit junior year cause it conflicted so bad with cross country and other activities I was involved in but I still get nostalgic sometimes in the fall for a marching band competition. #nerd

My husband was actually in it too, just because I was .... ;)

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