January 18, 2012

Nosey Parker in the Neighbourhood #3 - The Sewing Edition

1) How long have you been sewing? Are you a first generation sewer or was the knowledge handed down to you? Basically tell us about your journey...

  • I've been sewing since I was 8, I'm 67.
  • I'm self-taught.  My Mom also sewed, but she had no interest in helping me.  She did teach me to crochet, though.
  • I made a lot of my clothes thru out middle school (we called it Junior High), and high school.  No matter how tight the family budget was, if I needed fabric, my Dad would fund the purchase.
  • I received a Singer sewing machine for my high school graduation gift.
  • I made my wedding gown, I got married at 19.
Dad, me, Bob, Mom, my sister.
  • After 4 years of marriage, we bought a home and I started sewing some home decor items.  Then when our girls were born I sewed for them, in addition to making clothing for myself and occasionally for Bob.
  • I made all my daughters prom and formal dresses.

When fabric and patterns  became expensive, I pretty much stopped sewing.   When we relocated, after retirement, I gave my fancy sewing machine away and purchased a small portable, to have, "just in case".

I've been retired for 16 years, and started quilting 2 1/2 years ago, using the small portable, a Brother, that I hate, really hate.  I just bought a bottom of the line Janome, a Magnolia, and I love it.  What a great machine, easy to use, and none of the twitchy problems I had with the Brother.  I also hate my iron, but haven't replaced it, yet.

2) Where do you sew?

My sewing area is in my "office".  My cutting area is in the dining room.  I initially did everything in the dining room, but this is easier, overall.

3) What does your sewing room/area look like today in it's real state. Take a picture of it if possible and show it to us real :)

These are embarrassing, but this is the real deal.

The first two are my office/sewing room.
When I started building my fabric stash, 
I cleared this bookcase of all my books

More fabric and my Janome.

This is the dining room, where I do the cutting and deciding.  
I use a flannel back plastic table cloth to protect the table pads.  It's full of nicks a cuts, so it's doing it's job 

4) What is the first thing that you made which you were really proud of? Show us pics of your favourite project.

This first thing I ever made, when I was 8, was a pair of shorty pajamas.  I raided my Mom's fabric stash, and cut them out without a pattern, and sewed them with no help.  I was very proud.  My Mom was furious, but my Dad was proud of me.

Here are a couple of my favorite quilts:

5) Do you always stick to the "rules" when you sew, or are you more improvisation-ally minded?

I stick to a bare minimum of rules.  I seldom use patterns.  Right now is an exception, I making a Swoon quilt.

Diary of a Flutter.Kat

May your bobbins always be full,


  1. Lovely to read about your sewing life. I came via Kat's linky party.

  2. I am a new quilter. Your are very pretty. Hopefully mine turn out as lovely as yours.

  3. Wow thanks for sharing your story with us Jan!! I am in LOVE with all of the quilts you showed us. Your fabric stash looks devine too :)
    Thanks for linking up!
    Kat xx

  4. by the way - I just love your tagline on your header hehehe!

  5. Thanks for your story and the fabulous photos! Great that you have started sewing again and what brilliant results! Also love your strapline!

  6. Beautiful quilts and what a gorgeous wedding dress! Very talented :)
    That's a lot of fabric!! ;)

  7. I've come from Kat's nosey parker post too. Thanks for sharing your space and the photos of your quilts. They look wonderful! :o)

  8. I love your quilting space. It looks well used, just like mine! It is so wonderful that you cut and sewed your own pjs....the start of a long and wonderful sewing career!


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