I can’t remember the first time I stumbled on So Sew Easy but it was probably from Pinterest! Deby is a pin-master and has some really active, great boards which reflect her blog. I’ve written a few contributor posts for her in the past few months, which you can see here. Some of my favorites from SSE are her Cuddle Me Cardy pattern, the faux-chenille baby blanket, & the teeny tiny zipper pouches.
On her ‘about’ page Deby shares that she just learned how to sew herself somewhat recently, and there is lots of chatter online about who is “qualified” to teach other people how to sew. This thing is, it’s easier to remember what is confusing when you were confused by it yourself! A great example is her post on how to decipher a sewing pattern envelope. It is so overwhelming to try and pick something up from Jo-Ann Fabrics and get all the right materials when you’re just starting out – some of my worst beginner mistakes were due to completely inappropriate fabric choice and I wish I’d read this post before I went shopping!
Deby is so savvy; she shares her monthly income reports on a separate blog and I am just in awe of how much she is making each month! I appreciate when people share numbers both because I think it is helpful and because I’m nosy (I share my income reports quarterly).
In preparation for a mini-maternity leave I asked some of my favorite bloggers to answer a few questions, read on to hear more from Deby!
What are 2 of your favorite posts from your own blog & why?
This is such a hard one. There are articles on the site which have been very popular and totally surprised me, and then some which I loved which never got a comment or a second look. I usually find my latest makes are always my best or my favorite. I think because I’m still very new to sewing and improving all the time, so every time I sew, its better than the last time. If I had to narrow it down to 2 favorites, I would say my Turning Japanese Bag Pattern because this gets admired everywhere I go, and my Wrap Top Pattern. What’s not to love about a wrap top! [Stephanie: I included the fun wrap front top in my Nursing Friendly Sewing Pattern post!]
As my site has grown, so have all the emails and admin things to do, so I’ve recently introduced some contributors to the site, who each write a monthly article to help me put out as many interesting projects as possible. As you know Stephanie because I’m delighted to have you help me out with some content. These contributor articles are great because they introduce the So Sew Easy readers to a totally new way of doing things, different techniques each of the contributors have developed as well as content that I wouldn’t necessarily have written myself. They are also able to share their expertise in areas I don’t know about, such as when Irene wrote a great article about Must Have Features for your First Serger.
What drives you to create things?
Living on a tiny island means everything here is either expensive or hard to come by, or both. By sewing for me, it means I can actually save money on clothes, bags and things for the home. We do have a small fabric store, but I import most of my fabrics from the US and buy them online. Even with shipping and taxes, I can still make clothes far cheaper than I can buy them. So I make clothes that I like to wear. It’s a casual island and warm too so everything is easy to wear, lots of knits, short sleeves or no sleeves at all, and just comfy. Of course sometimes I make a nice dress too but dress code to every event here is casual so a clean t-shirt is usually all that’s needed!
Hubby and I rent a room in a shared house with others, so there isn’t a lot of scope for home décor sewing, but I like to add a little something with some seasonal table linens or festive decorations from time to time.
Do you have any exciting projects, patterns, life changes, and/or blog changes planned for 2015?
I’ve learned not to make too many goals, plans and targets after I had a ‘say yes to everything’ period near the end of 2014 which left me barely any time to sleep and I felt utterly overwhelmed. So for 2015, just keep doing what I do. I’ll still keep up with offering at least one free sewing pattern every month and will try to steer the site back to its early origins of sewing clothes and bags. I sewed a lot of other projects in 2014, some of which I loved and helped me to develop new skills and interests, but my real passion lies in the bigger projects, the pattern designing and clothes.
I have just recently introduced a new sewing forum to the site because I so love to chat and share with other sewers, and help others get answers to their sewing questions. Its also a great place for us to share our WIPs and show off our completed projects so I plan to be active there this year and try to make this a really good resource for sewers from all sites, not just the So Sew Easy readers.
What creative maker, blogger, or shop owner has caught your eye recently? Share a link!
I was recently blown away by this Etsy shop. I was searching for cute sewing patterns and nearly hyperventilated when I found Dolls and DayDreams. You MUST go and take a look. Now I’m not suddenly going to fly off in a tangent and start sewing and designing doll and softie patterns, but if I did, I would want them to look like these.
For my favorite blogs, I love Patchwork Posse and the Sewing Loft. I made friends with these gals online and then at the end of last year I flew over to the USA to meet up and they helped me shop for fabric in a shop so big I was drooling and running up and down the aisles shouting “I need one of those! And that one! Oh, and that one!” It was a really fun weekend away – I’ve got pictures to prove it!
Has anything about blogging surprised you?
I think just the amount of time it takes to do all of the stuff that goes on behind the scenes and just how much techy stuff there is to learn. From the start I answered every single email I received, and I still do, but sometimes I find my husband is coming home from work, and all I’ve done all day is sit and answer emails and enquiries from readers. I had sewing projects I desperately wanted to get completed and never even opened the door to the sewing room.
That was one of my major motivations for starting the forum. People all over the world were writing to me with their sewing questions of every type and I was answering everyone as best I could. I want everyone to learn and enjoy sewing as much as I do. Now with the new forum, people can list their questions there and hopefully while visiting answer one or more from someone else, and check back later to get a reply to their original problem. I’ll still be there, answering as much as I can, but I’m hoping that others will help me out with the workload so I can get back to some sewing!
Link to your first blog post!
Oh dear, this is so embarrassing. It was not only my first ever blog post, but my first ever time sewing and my first ever time trying to take a decent blog photo. None of them came out too well, but here goes. This is my first apron. I drafted it myself and made it from a fabric remnant on a borrowed sewing machine. http://so-sew-easy.com/
My site looked a whole lot different back then. My second project wasn’t much better. I tried my first dress and was introduced to the idea of excessive ‘fitting ease’ that makes a pattern apparently in your size come out 3 sizes too big all over. This started my endless frustration with buying sewing patterns and set me on the road to making my own.
How cool is it that the Internet makes geographic distances irrelevant for sharing projects & selling patterns!
Do you have any questions for Deby? Ask them in the comments and I’ll make sure she sees them!
Deby at So Sew Easy
Wednesday 11th of March 2015
Thanks so much for having me as a guest on your site Stephanie. And congratulations on the arrival of your new beautiful daughter. You've said such nice things you've made me blush this morning. Thank you too for all the great content you add to the So Sew Easy site too - I couldn't keep everything ticking over without your help.
Stephanie - Swoodson Says
Monday 16th of March 2015
Thanks Deby! Hope to have introduced some new readers to SSE :)