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sewingI’ve always been interested in everything. I thought I was the only one like that. Some of the most successful blogs I’ve seen are ones that are focused on one subject. I’ve had lots of blogs, but I never could focus. I skipped around – sewing (always sewing), knitting, crocheting, painting furniture, calligraphy, watercolor, drawing, making jewelry, writing (always writing), photography, polymer clay and then there is a slew of other things I want to learn.

But lately, I’ve noticed more and more bloggers have admitted they, too, are interested in multiple subjects! I’m not a dork! Well, I’m probably still kind of a dork, but for other reasons. 🙂

So, yes, this is a DIY blog mainly geared toward fixing up the house we will purchase next summer. But we’re going to take lots of field trips!

Sewing: I’m 57 years old. I learned to sew when I was 9 years old and it’s been a long and lovely relationship. Simply put, I love textiles. I’ve made my own clothes for decades, my kids clothes when they were little, quilts galore, clothes and toys for my grandchildren, and home dec (cause I’m too cheap to pay hundreds of dollars for nice curtains). I’m learning patternmaking, but it seems hard to get guinea pigs! I’m exploring couture sewing and someday I’m sure I’ll get into tailoring.

I love the detail work of couture sewing. Most of it is done by hand. Have you ever made a garment without a sewing machine? Let me tell you a little story 🙂

It was 1977. I was 19, newly married to a military man and pregnant with our first child. We were stationed in Weisbaden, Germany. And poor as that skinny little church mouse. We lived in a tiny apartment in a small town, across the street from the local cemetery – which was actually quite beautiful.

Anyway, being young, just married, and living thousands of miles from home – we had nothing and I couldn’t stop by my mom’s house to borrow anything. We had some dishes, pots and pans and our pillows. The apartment was furnished. I only had the clothes I could fit in my suitcase, and just a few things for the baby. I wasn’t used to being without a sewing machine, or a fabric shop down the road!

On the Air Base, there was a department store of sorts, kind of like Walmart. The first time I went there, I noticed they had a fabric department. Hallelujah! I didn’t have a sewing machine, but women had been making clothes for centuries without sewing machines. All I needed was a needle and thread.

I made myself some maternity clothes, and some baby clothes – all by hand. It took a little longer, but what else did I have to do? And those clothes wore well. Just as well as my machine-sewn clothes.

Fast forward to a few years ago, and I’m taking a Craftsy class on Couture Sewing by Susan Khalje. The best couture sewing is done by hand. Ha! I’d already made myself couture clothes and I didn’t even know it. 🙂 Okay, to tell the truth, my maternity clothes weren’t what you’d call couture, but they were made by hand!

Have you made anything by hand? Or done any couture sewing?

Next week we explore Shabby Chic. The first part will be in the newsletter which arrives every Saturday morning with new content not seen here. If you love Shabby Chic – sign up for the newsletter in the sidebar – over on the right side at the top. Can’t wait to see ya! 🙂


Author: Karen

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2 thoughts on “Multiple Personalities, I mean Multiple Hobbies!

  1. lol – hey I got all the sewing mojo from your mama and then from you! And you’re right, you ARE hand sewing 🙂

    Granny would call me now and then and always asked what I was doing. I always said, “Sewing.” (cause I was) and she was the only one who never said “Still?” or “Again?” 🙂 She knew!

    I love embellishing 🙂

    Posted on August 26, 2016 at 10:10 am
  2. OMG! my sweet niece, you never cease to amaze me. I have never hand sewn clothes for myself (well,doll clothes when I was little) and I’m not good at hand-quilting. I have made everything from baby clothes to wedding dresses on my machine and quilting.
    My hat’s off to you.
    My new love is landscape quilting and embellishing, throw in some embroidery. Hey, that’s hand sewing! 🙂

    Love and Happy Trails to you,
    your admiring,
    Auntie Carol

    Posted on August 26, 2016 at 9:19 am