A New Passion – Sewing

Business, sewing

Quite a few years ago, well actually 3 decades, I just had my first little girl and like all new mothers, you want to make that special keepsake gift for them.  One you’ll save in a box, cherish until it’s time to pass it along to them.  One day I came up with an idea to sew her a flannel nightie.  Sounds really simple right!  First problem, I didn’t have a sewing machine and didn’t know how to sew. I found a used one at a sewing center and was floating on air.  Off to the fabric store I went, found an “Easy Sew” pattern, just the cutest material and was ready to start cutting and stitching.

Since I had no experience with the operation of a sewing machine, I think it was a older White, I had to first learn how to operate it.   It had the craziest threader and bobbin casing. That crunching sound it makes when something isn’t lined up right is not exciting to a newbie! Hours later I was finally ready to go.  I actually discovered that I had a little talent, as long as the machine cooperated, and sewed the cutest nightgown.  I even figured out how to put in sleeves.  Miracle time!  I was all ready to do the finishing touches when I realized I had put the interfacing in backwards!  Details, details! I would have had to take most of it apart because of the pattern design. Being somewhat of a perfectionist in some areas, I felt defeated.  I’m embarrassed to tell you that I threw it in a box and didn’t finish it!  My sewing days were over. Secret time – I still have it in that box!

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I didn’t totally give up sewing.  A few years ago, I bought a new machine and started teaching myself how to make the usual beginners potholders, coasters and took a beginner’s quilting class which I loved.  I started making tote bags for family and friends.  A new opportunity for selling them in a retail Etsy store in Oregon has opened up, together with my crochet and knit products.

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I’m so excited to be using my newly found talent and enjoy the challenge of new designs.  One of the best parts of sewing is going to the fabric store and choosing from hundreds of bolts of material. If you have a dream to start a new craft or adventure, give it a try.  I never would have thought that sewing would become another passion after that first disaster.

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36 Responses

  1. Kungphoo says:

    Wow, this is great article and very inspirational! You do wonderful work and it’s a good thing that you didn’t give up! 🙂

    • ladydi says:

      Thanks! That was one encouraging comment. Creating and designing is in my veins and I wish I could do 3 things at once! 🙂 I usually don’t give up until I realize that my talents lie somewhere else but even then, I keep pushing myself.

  2. Jessica says:

    the fabric is gorgeous, congrats on the Etsy store!

    • ladydi says:

      Jessica, I love all the new colors and designs in the fabric stores. I could easily fill my cupboards. I have to contain myself 🙂 Thanks so much for sharing.

  3. How fun, that is the one thing I wish that I knew how to do! I took a class once on sewing as a little girl and did not do good with the machine although I can sew by hand.

    • ladydi says:

      I just kept practicing and giving away my projects even when they weren’t perfect. My friends and family always appreciated even the uneven seams and still use some of those items today! How sweet they are. Thanks for sharing!

  4. It’s amazing Diana, that once you dive in and take some action, other opportunities show up, like the Etsy retail store did. I can tell that you love what you are doing and your talent and creativity always shines through. You have a great sense of colour and design and sharing your story offers inspiration to others!

    • ladydi says:

      Thanks Beverley so much for your kind words. I love all kinds of creativity. I want to try more new things but have to use my current inventory for both fiber and fabric first. I am most happy when I’m using my hands and mind to design.

  5. Diana, you are such an inspiration! I can see that you love what you do and it shows in your beautiful projects. Congrats on the Etsy retail store as well! 🙂 I always look forward to seeing your creative works. 🙂 OH! I love the fabrics! What gorgeous designs!

  6. TR says:

    Your sewing is always beautiful. Part of it is that you are so exacting with your cutting and you choose wonderful fabrics. Love looking at all the wonderful bags. Sewing is so fulfilling and can be so creative. Stay blessed!

    • ladydi says:

      Thanks Tracey. The idea for the post just popped out of my head the other day. Stretching myself to learn new things. Hugs 🙂

  7. Pamela says:

    This is a lovely hobby especially if you’re beginning to earn from it! There is nothing more rewarding to see your work getting appreciated and bought, of course! I’m happy for you and I love the colors of your bags!

    • ladydi says:

      Thanks Pamela. This is a new venture from the yarn fiber business and I do love to sew. You can’t help but love all the new colors and patterns!

  8. sue says:

    the pajamas and the story is a good enough keepsake.

  9. Rochefel says:

    Congratulations on your etsy shop! your doing a great job, sometimes we tend to put something aside to focus more on other priorities but you managed to push it through and most importantly you didn’t give up 🙂 nice bags 🙂

  10. Darla says:

    I love to hear other creatives journeys! We are always learning and growing right? Great post Diana:)

  11. veronica says:

    I wish I could sew. I taught myself to make pillows, but that’s as much as I can do. I love those cute little fabrics

    • ladydi says:

      Veronica, I never though I could make anything more than a potholder. I’d be inspired by items I saw on line and think “I can make that, maybe…and then I’d use remnants and try it. I’d work on it until I was satisfied with the end product..not perfect but a good attempt. You can do a lot of things especially since you taught yourself how to make pillows. Pick a fun project, work on it and I’ll bet you’ll surprise yourself. Thanks for commenting. Let me know what you decide to try 🙂

  12. Christina says:

    Inspirational! It seems you’ve come a long way since you first began, and how-well those tote bags are made proves it 🙂

  13. Pat Moon says:

    Look at what you made.. I’m proud of you. I’m proud of you because I have been around sewing most of my life. My mother taught me when I was a teen. I made all my maternity clothes for my 1st pregnancy. I sewed for other people… both alterations and new clothing. One of my home businesses when my children were young. I owned and managed (and swept floors and washed windows) my own full service fabric store. I even sold sewing machines. I taught sewing classes… clothing, quilting, & crafts. Anyway your blog went after one of my passions.

    • ladydi says:

      Thanks Pat! You so inspire me with your words and your story is amazing. I believe if you really want to learn something new, you just have to try it. I gave up early on but wanted to sew but I’m so glad I bought that new machine and gave it another whirl.

      • Pat Moon says:

        So many people become discouraged with sewing because they have to fight with their machine. Having a well working, easy to use machine is more than half the battle when learning to sew. I am thrilled that you came back to it… that shows the passion!

  14. Gina says:

    What an inspiration! Note to self: Past failure does not determine present or future success. Thanks for sharing your story and your lovely creations!

    • ladydi says:

      Thanks so much for commenting. Sometimes we get stuck in our past “disasters” thinking we’ll never be able to succeed if we try again. I’m here to say “Yes you can”!

  15. Katrina says:

    My parents own a needle point and craft store. I am always amazed at the work they do. From cross-stitch, crochet, knitting, and sewing. My mother even made my prom dress for me. Still have that dress.
    I didn’t master the craft of needle work but did master the craft of cooking. Great article and I love the underlying theme… never give up1

    • ladydi says:

      I think we all have that special talent Katrina. I love to cook but not a master. Hope special that your mom made your prom dress for you and you still have it! What a great memory to share. Thanks so much.

  16. Sharon O'Day says:

    As a little girl, I learned to make clothes for my dolls from one of our maids in Brazil. My mother had a Singer “Featherweight” machine she had brought from America. I loved sewing and ended up making most of my clothes in high school, including my prom dresses and several formal wear outfits after that. I then set all sewing aside. Awhile back, I found a Singer Featherweight just like Mom’s at an antique dealer in North Miami … and bought it. I don’t use it often, but whenever I do, the smell of the machine (actually, the lubricating oil!) brings back such wonderful memories. I can fully understand your excitement, Diana!

    • ladydi says:

      I’ve seen a lot of “Featherweight” machines being used on craft sites. I’ve only had the two Brothers and enjoyed using them. Your story is wonderful! My mom was a self taught seamstress and make beautiful suits and all my skating competition outfits. I was very fortunate! Thanks for sharing your memories.

  17. I absolutely believe things happen for a reason. That earlier attempt fed into growing into a passion at a later date. And now you are adding to your wonderful talent line up! That is awesome!!

    • ladydi says:

      It has been a joy learning a new craft and all those wonderful fabrics. Had a great time this past week in Bend and back home. Going back in July. Maybe we could connect for coffee. Would love for you to meet my daughter, Kristy. 🙂

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