Meet Mimi Goodwin, Successful Sewing Entrepreneur

Meet Mimi Goodwin, Successful Sewing Entrepreneur


Download this episode here!

Recently I had an opportunity to chat with Mimi Goodwin of Mimi G Style. She is an inspiration to so many women, listen to her amazing success story!

Intro: I met Mimi at a business Conference a few years ago. Love her unique sense of style! I’ve been following her ever since. Mimi is a huge influencer in the sewing, fashion and lifestyle niche. She is very accomplished with her tutorials, online courses, and her partnership with Simplicity patterns. I had asked her a bit about how she works with Simplicity and we will learn more about that in today’s episode among other topics. Mimi has been through a lot in her life, she’s been on her own since she was 15 years old. She’s got an amazing story to share, from being a victim of abuse, becoming homeless, and struggling as a single mom. Her great sense of style and business savvy has made her the successful entrepreneur she is today.

I am incredibly excited to have her with me on the podcast!

Mimi’s bio: Award winning trending Expert Mimi G. is Editor-in-chief of the outrageously popular Fashion, Lifestyle, and DIY blog, MimiGStyle.com, as well as the Mimi G Style YouTube Channel, which houses tutorials, fashion and beauty tips, health and fitness videos, product reviews and more.

Her axiom, “Buy It, Make It, Mix It, Rock It!”, is the mantra for her fully engaged daily followers, as well as industry professionals. Garnering thousands of “new followers” by the day, Mimi G has quickly become an International fashion icon, influencer, role model, and an “in demand” speaker and panel member at blogging conferences across the country. Mimi G has also developed her own line of products ranging from ready to wear collections to commercial sewing patterns. She was recently featured on Project Runway Junior alongside Tim Gunn on Lifetime TV, has won numerous awards including Best Shopping Inspiration by InStyle Magazine and Best Latina Blogger.

Mimi G is a contributing designer to Simplicity Patterns and has a number of online sewing courses. Her YouTube Channel,  blog, Instagram and FB are followed by thousands of people. Mimi also has her own style conference. Mimi is a wife and mom who loves to sew and create for real life curvy women.

  1. How did you first learn to sew?
  2. What motivated you to start your blog?
  3. What do you think was the most instrumental thing that you did to grow your blog/sewing business?
  4. How did you become a Simplicity Pattern designer?
  5. Tell me about your new adventure with Sew It Academy and the Kids Sewing Classes that you offer.
  6. I noticed that you have also started a ready to wear division. Tell us about how that began and what your future plans are.
  7. What is your favorite sewing pattern(s) you have designed?
  8. What do you do when you are not sewing?

 

Where is the best place for people to connect with you online?

Find Mimi on Twitter

Find Mimi on FB

Find Mimi on Pinterest

Find Mimi on Instagram

Basic Sewing Terminology, What You Need to Know to Start

Basic Sewing Terminology, What You Need to Know to Start


Download this episode here!

In today’s episode we will talk about some basic sewing terms that you need to know to embark on your first sewing project.

Basic Sewing Terminology

  1. Straight stitch, single needle 2.5 or 3.0

  2. Zig zag stitch: Side to side stitch, different widths small for buttonholes, wide for overcast and uses (elastic, decorative, finishing edges)

  3. Interfacing, what is it for? Cuffs, collars, waistbands, pockets, button placket. Fusible or non fusible. There are uses and different weights, bumpy side is glue. Use warm dry iron to a shear to wrong side of fabric.

  4. Rotary cutters and plastic matt used in quilting for cutting narrow fabric strips and squaring quilt blocks.

  5. Back tacking, reverse stitching. 1-2 stitches at the beginning and end of seams will secure the seam.

  6. Basting, long straight stitch length 4.5-5.0. Used for securing zippers, gathering fabric, easing sleeve caps into place.

  7. Bobbin, winding on each machine should be marked. Be sure it’s smoothly filled to avoid problems.

  8. Tension on machine, how to adjust look at top stitches, compare to bottom stitches. Some machines adjust automatically.

  9. Needle threader on some machines. Best to trim thread, insert front to back on most machines.

  10. Flywheel, move by turning toward you to insert needle into fabric at a specific place.

  11. Always begin sewing with the needle in the fabric. Check the stitches, make adjustments. If it’s loose on the back, tighten the tension. If it’s loose on the top and tight on the back, loosen the tension.

  12. Tailor’s Chalk, marking pens

  13. Types of pins and needles

  14. Bias cut, used for close fitting garments, usually woven fabrics

  15. Selvedges are across from the fold of the fabric, must be removed before sewing.

  16. Grain is the direction of the fabric, noted on the pattern pieces. Pattern pieces must line up with fold of fabric, measure for consistent distance.

  17. One way print, pattern is printed one direction. More yardage is needed to cut one way prints.

  18. Two way prints, print runs either direction.

  19. Nap cut edges of velvet or corduroy. Nap is directional and patterns must be cut one way only.

Sewing Terminology|Style Blues Podcast|chambrayblues.com

The History of Sewing, How We Got Where We are Today

The History of Sewing, How We Got Where We are Today


Download this episode here!

In this episode of the Style Blues Podcast, I talk a bit about the history of sewing, the beginning of the big pattern companies and how we got to where we are today. It wasn’t that long ago that everyone sewed. Over the last 30 years things have changed, here’s what happened.

Show Notes:

The History of Sewing

Let’s learn a bit about the history of sewing, how did we get where we are today?

Abbreviated History of Sewing as per Wikipedia:

 

  • The Industrial Revolution shifted the production of textiles from the household to the mills. In the early decades of the Industrial Revolution, the machinery produced whole cloth. The world’s first sewing machine was patented in 1790 by Thomas Saint. By the early 1840s, other early sewing machines began to appear.
  • By the 1850s, Isaac Singer developed the first sewing machines that could operate quickly and accurately and surpass the productivity of a seamstress or tailor sewing by hand.While much clothing was still produced at home by female members of the family, more and more ready-made clothes for the middle classes were being produced with sewing machines. Textile sweatshops full of poorly paid sewing machine operators grew into entire business districts in large cities like London and New York City. To further support the industry, piece work was done for little money by women living in slums. Needlework was one of the few occupations considered acceptable for women, but it did not pay a living wage. Women doing piece work from home often worked 14-hour days to earn enough to support themselves, sometimes by renting sewing machines that they could not afford to buy.
  • Fine quality Tailors became associated with higher-end clothing during this period. In London, this status grew out of the dandy trend of the early 19th century, when new tailor shops were established around Savile Row. These shops acquired a reputation for sewing high-quality handmade clothing tailored to one’s particular fit needs.
  • Sewing underwent further developments during the 20th century. As sewing machines became more affordable to the working class, demand for sewing patterns grew. Women had become accustomed to seeing the latest fashions in periodicals during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, increasing demand for sewing patterns even more. American tailor and manufacturer Ebenezer Butterick met the demand with paper patterns that could be traced and used by home sewers. The patterns, sold in small packets, became wildly popular. Several pattern companies soon established themselves. Women’s magazines also carried sewing patterns, and continued to do so for much of the 20th century. This practice declined during the later decades of the 20th century, when ready-made clothing became a necessity as women joined the paid workforce in larger numbers, leaving them with less time to sew, if indeed they had an interest.

One of my friends who is a bit older than I am was telling me that when she was in high school everyone made their own clothes. This was probably in the 1960’s. When I was in middle school in the 1970’s, I was the only kid who made her own clothes. Many of us learned to sew from our mothers but many of us have not had the opportunity to learn from anyone. You can learn to sew and I can help you succeed!

Growing up, I️ always wondered how home sewing was so different from commercial sewing. You would think they are the same but they aren’t. Mass produced garments are sewn by the thousand and use piece work technology to put them together. Garments are completely sewn in minutes, not hours. Commercial sewing patterns have been the same since the 1950s when clothing was produced on a much smaller scale, but the home sewing industry largely hasn’t changed since then. Today we have downloadable pdf patterns and many independent designers that are changing the home sewing industry.

Sew Along with Me!

Sew Along Masterclass 2018, going on now on the Chambray Blues Facebook page.

12 projects using easy commercial patterns, one each month

Video Tutorials, FB live sessions, plus question and answer

Closed group, only open for a limited time

Access to professional designer

Help choosing fabrics, notions, cutting, altering and sewing

Join the fun!

Don’t forget to Pin this post!

Sweet Mom and Me Apron Pattern Review

Sweet Mom and Me Apron Pattern Review

Every little girl wants matching Mom and me outfits. Some of us wait a long time to get them! This easy apron is a great project for a beginner sewer, make one for you and your child in a single day!

Mom and Me Aprons

I love aprons. I have at least 6 of them that I use all the time for cooking, crafting, or cleaning. Some of them have pockets, some don’t. A few of my aprons are for specific holidays or making Sunday dinner. I don’t have many that are prints, and I was smitten with these lovely fabrics from Cross Cut Sewing Company the minute I saw them.

This pattern is very easy, requires only a yard of each fabric and is reverse-able. I love the contrasting bit of fabric at the hem that gives you a hint of what’s on the other side. The pattern, fabric and trims come as a complete kit and are customize-able for children or adults. It’s easy to make a mother child combo, or you can make two adult size aprons as I did. You can choose your fabrics too, and I loved this combination of floral and chambray. Chambray is my favorite thing you know…..

Sweet Mom and Me Apron Pattern Review|ChambrayBluesblog|chambrayblues.com

The Cross Cut Sewing Company pattern directions were easy to follow. I didn’t change any of the construction, but I did add top stitching 1/4″ from the edge of the apron around the perimeter. Also, I applied Fray-Check to seal the raw edges of the twill tape after cutting. The twill tape is used for the neck band and waist ties. You could also melt the edges with a cigarette lighter to seal them, but this method will slightly discolor the edges where the Fray-Check is completely clear.

I also added a stitch in the ditch seam at the hem where the contrasting fabric band begins. To do this, just top stitch over the seam line, it will appear on both sides. This stitching helps keep the layered fabrics together and keeps things from shifting during washing.

 

The great thing about the pattern is the reverse-able nature of it. The apron is fast to cut out by layering the two fabric pieces before you cut with a rotary cutter. Just be sure the edges and folds match so you don’t end up with one piece that’s larger than the other.

The pattern kit came with D-rings for the neck band which were easy to stitch in place on the twill tape.

Sweet Mom and Me Apron Pattern Review|Chambraybluesblog|chambrayblues.com

Mom was more concerned about eating her breakfast before it got cold and putting her lipstick on before the photos. But, she likes her new apron. I caught her with it on while she was doing dishes this morning! Finally, we have a Mom and Me outfit. I always wanted one as a kid! You are never too old for this sort of thing, Mom is 87 and still going strong!

Thanks to Cross Cut Sewing Company for sponsoring this post!

Don’t forget to Pin it!

Sweet Mom and Me Apron Pattern Review|Chambraybluesblog|chambrayblues.com

 

Try some of these other great ideas:

3 Step Easy T-Shirt Pattern Hack

How to Read a Sewing Pattern Envelope

5 Step Easy Headband

How to Restyle a Boring Denim Jacket

What You Should Know About the Cricut Maker

Why Self Care Makes for Better Sewing

Why Self Care Makes for Better Sewing

We have all been there: feeling, sore, tired, overwhelmed and unfocused. These things can disrupt your mindset and decrease your sewing productivity. Here’s why you should make self care a priority for better sewing.

 

Why Selfcare makes sewing better|Chambraybluesblog|Chambrayblues.com
Taking care of yourself will make you a better sewer!

I sometimes think that as sewers, we are destined to take care of everyone else but ourselves. We spend long hours hunched over a sewing machine or cutting table, laboring away on the things we make out of love for everyone else. So often we end up with sore backs, wrists, dry cut hands and cut bleeding fingers from our efforts. Forgetting to take care of yourself actually disrupts and slows down your sewing production. Here’s how you can remedy your physical issues that keep you from being more productive in your sewing.

 

Why Selfcare makes sewing better|Chambraybluesblog|Chambrayblues.com

Take Time for Self Care

This post is sponsored by Love and Leche. I was compensated in some way for writing this post. Any opinions given are completely my own. See the disclosures page for more information.

Why Selfcare makes sewing better|Chambraybluesblog|Chambrayblues.com

Top Self Care Issues

  1. Cure dry chapped hands. Here in Wisconsin, our long cold winters attribute to dry skin and cracked hands. With all the cutting and sewing I do, I find that my hands are just a mess. Nothing seems to keep my hands from feeling chapped and sore. Sewing just makes the problem worse. Love and Leche sent me their natural lotion bar to try and it’s been a game changer. This bar is incredibly moisturizing, and it doesn’t leave a greasy residue on your hands. I love that it comes in this adorable bag, and has a mini-lotion tin for my handbag. This eco-friendly gift bag is made by Work + Shelter in New Delhi, India. Your purchase of this product (the gift bag) goes to help impoverished women giving them more control and dignity in their lives. It’s a win, win.
  2. Be sure your sewing table is at the correct height. Working on a table that is too low, or too high for long hours will cause back and shoulder pain. Your hands and wrists should be perpendicular to your machine while sewing to relieve stress in your neck, back and shoulders. If your table is not the correct height you are at risk for injury. Look for a lower table or adjust your machine height by setting it into the table top. A handy man can cut a hole in your table to set your machine down in it without too much trouble.
  3. Take frequent breaks while sewing. This may seam obvious, but it’s easy to get so involved in your project that you spend hours and hours without moving or changing position. You should get up and walk around at least every 20-30 minutes to relieve stress and relax your muscles.
  4. Cut out your project on a waist high surface. Many women who sew have lower back pain from leaning over their cutting surface. You will be amazed how much better you feel by raising your table up when you cut. Try using an inexpensive 8 foot plastic dining table raised up on concrete blocks for cutting. You can even put two tables together for a wider cutting surface. Look for inexpensive plastic risers to add to your own table at Walmart or Ikea for this purpose.
  5. Pace Yourself. It’s easy to over commit to your sewing projects. I have 5 cut projects waiting to be sewn as I write this post. As much as I love to sew, no one can sew 24 hours a day. Set a realistic deadline or goal for your sewing. I have a project scheduled on my calendar for each month. If I get it done before the month is over, I start another one. If not, then I have some time to squeeze it in during the next month. Sewing is ment to be an enjoyable hobby, it’s not enjoyable if you are stressed out trying to finish a project and make mistakes because of it. I limit my sewing to 2-3 hours per day. If I try to work longer hours, I end up making unnecessary mistakes in my work. Pace is important!
  6. Treat yourself to a massage. I am a firm believer in massage. Get one once a week or once a month to stay loose and limber for sewing. Massage releases toxins that build up in your muscles over time. The most effective massages are at least 60 minutes long, it takes that long to truly relax and enjoy the massage. It may cost a few dollars, but you will be more productive in your sewing if you feel good. This is particularly helpful if you sew for a living, or have a big stressful project your are working on such as a bridal gown or large quilt. You won’t regret it, I promise.
  7. Drink plenty of water. Headaches are the first sign of dehydration. Be sure to keep a bottle of water next to you as you work on your projects. It’s easy to forget that you need to keep hydrated as you work. Definitely will help you concentrate longer and get more done.

Why Selfcare makes sewing better|Chambraybluesblog|Chambrayblues.com

 

Thanks to Love and Leche for sponsoring this post! If you would like to try their products, they are offering a free mini-lotion for your first purchase as a special offer to my readers. Enter the code Chambrayblues at checkout. Offer is good until May 15, 2018.

You can also register to win a free lotion gift bag here.

Don’t forget to Pin this post!

Why Selfcare makes sewing better|Chambraybluesblog|Chambrayblues.com

The Tale of the Seamstress

The Tale of the Seamstress

The latest episode of my podcast is now available! We will talk a bit about my childhood seamstress, blogging, sewing and how it all got started.

The Tale of the Seamstress|Chambray blues blog|www.chambrayblues.com

I am not very good about sharing personal stories. I love to read other people’s stories, but for some reason it always seems less important that I share my own story. In this episode of the Style Blues podcast, I talk a bit about how I learned to sew and what inspired me to go to design school. Perhaps listening my blog story will inspire someone else!

Show Notes:

Intro

Blogging history and story behind my lifestyle blog Designers Sweet Spot.

Your 10 Biggest Sewing Mistakes

  1. Not pre-washing your fabric first
  2. Not believing in yourself, it’s not rocket science
  3. Buying the wrong size pattern
  4. Not measuring correctly
  5. Not making pattern adjustments
  6. Not placing the grainline correctly
  7. Using the wrong type of fabric for the pattern.
  8. Using a machine that hasn’t been serviced
  9. Using the wrong needle
  10. Using the wrong thread

Don’t forget to Pin this for later!

 

 

 

 

 

5 Step Easy Headband

5 Step Easy Headband

This headband is easy to make with the Cricut Maker! Just 5 steps to a finished project that will take less than 1/2 hour to make!

5 step easy headband|Chambraybluesblog|chambrayblues.com

 

5 Step Easy Headband

It’s super easy to make a headband with the Cricut Maker! This project is already in the Cricut Design space so it doesn’t take long to download it and put it together. I made this headband from some fabric scraps leftover from my last project. You will need about 1/4 yard of cotton fabric for this project, and 6″ of 1/2″ narrow elastic.

 

What you need to know about the Cricut Maker|Chambray Blues Blog|chambrayblues.com
The Cricut Maker cuts fabric, HTV, paper, just about anything!

Directions:

Download the Simplicity Headband pattern to your Cricut Maker.

Apply your fabric to your pink fabric cutting mat. Cut the pieces with your Cricut machine. It’s really easy! Then you are ready to sew!

Sewing Directions:

5 Step easy headband|chambraybluesblog|chambrayblues.com

  1. Stitch along the long edges of the large rectangle with 1/4″ hem. Turn and stitch again over your first row of stitching.
  2. Gather the ends of the rectangle with a basting stitch, pull up threads.
  3. Make the elastic casing. I changed the construction slightly from the Simplicity directions, just fold the small rectangle into thirds with the elastic inside and zig zag stitch over the top. Easy Peasy!
  4. Attach large rectangle ends to ends of elastic piece with a single needle stitch 3.0.
  5. Fold the small square pieces into thirds, secure over the seam where the elastic is attached to the headband with a few more zig zag stitches.

5 step easy headband|Chambraybluesblog|chambrayblues.com

That’s all there is to it! This project is perfect addition for your self care routine. Hold your hair back when you are washing your face, applying makeup, having a facial, etc. You can also wear it to the grocery store on those bad hair days! My Cricut blogger friends have gotten together to post about some other self care ideas that you can make with a Cricut. Click on the link below to see what else you can make to pamper yourself with your Cricut!

Don’t forget to Pin it!

Need more inspiration? Try these other projects:

What You Should Know About the Cricut Maker

3 Step Easy T-Shirt Pattern Hack

001: Interview with Melissa Viscount of Silhouette School Blog

How to Restyle a Boring Denim Jacket

How to Read a Sewing Pattern Envelope

3 Step Easy T-Shirt Pattern Hack

3 Step Easy T-Shirt Pattern Hack

There are many ways to make a simple t-shirt into an updated style. This easy 3 step pattern hack will add style to any wardrobe!

3stepeasyt-shirt|Chambraybluesblog|chambrayblues.com

 

 

I started this pattern hack by finding some adorable pink polkadot fabric from Walmart. It’s a woven fabric, and I loved the pretty colors. I decided it would be a perfect addition to my t-shirt pattern. My main fabric is a soft white jersey knit also from Walmart.

The pattern I used here is McCalls #7331. It’s just a basic t-shirt pattern, but I made 3 simple changes to it with the help of my Cricut Maker. First, cut out the t-shirt pattern in your size from your desired fabric (or you can use a couple of store bought t-shirts, directions for that are below.)

Add style to your t-shirt with this easy pattern hack!

 

3 Step Easy Pattern Hack:

1. Login to Cricut Design Space here.

2. Download my free 3 Step Easy T-Shirt Hack pattern file here.

3. Cut out the pieces with your Cricut Maker.

It’s really easy to sew and fast to assemble by cutting the pieces with your Cricut! This post is sponsored by Cricut. Any opinions given are completely my own.

Bell Sleeve detail|Chambraybluesblog|www.chambrayblues.com

 

Assembly Instructions:

1. Fold sleeve bands in half, right sides out. Stitch together with 5/8″ seam allowance on the long edge.

2. Cut your sleeve piece in half just above the elbow. Sew the contrasting rectangle piece underneath the raw edge of the sleeve with a narrow zig zag stitch 1.5 wide, overlapping the pieces by 1/2 inch.

THE RAW EDGE OF THE KNIT T-SHIRT IS SUPPOSED TO SHOW as in the photo above.

3. Gather the bottom part of the sleeve by stitching along the top edge with 5.0 basting stitch (I added 3″ in the sleeve width to my existing pattern to make the gathered ruffle). Pull up threads and gather the piece to fit the sleeve band (check the fit on your arm before you finish sewing). Overlap the gathered knit sleeve on top of the contrasting fabric by about 1/2″ (right sides up). Stitch in place with narrow zig zag stitch 1.5 wide. THE GATHERED RAW EDGE IS SUPPOSED TO SHOW as in photo.

4. Add lace trim to the bottom of the sleeve hem by stitching lace on with 1/4″ seam allowance using a narrow zig zag stitch.

5. Place the neck facing right side up on the front of the t-shirt neckline with the two pieces touching at center front. Pin in place. Stitch along the outside edge with a narrow zig zag stitch. Tack the facing with the zig zag stitch at center front 1″ from bottom to secure as in photo below.

 

6. Slash center front along the facing at center front to the bottom edge of the facing. Sew lace edging over raw edge with zig zag stitch, folding lace to miter at corners. Sew shoulder seams together. Add lace all around the neck edge, front and back with the same method, folding under ends at center front and tacking in place.

7. Add lace trim to outside of neck facing, stitching again over your first stitching with the same narrow zig zag stitch.

8. Finish shirt by stitching sleeves into armholes, and sewing underarm seam. Hem, press and enjoy! Share with your friends!

 

If you do not want to make an entire t-shirt, you can create this look with two old t-shirts:

1. Cut out contrasting pieces with your Cricut Maker as above.

2. Remove neck ribbing on old t-shirt.

3. Cut 7″ wide strip of fabric off the bottom of one of the t-shirts.

4. Gather fabric along top edge, as in step 3 above. Attach contrasting sleeve trim to existing sleeve edge and lace as described above.

5. Add contrasting fabric at neck as described in step 5 above.

 

Thanks to Cricut for sponsoring this post! If you want more pattern ideas, try these other posts:

How to Restyle a Boring Denim Jacket

How to Read a Sewing Pattern Envelope

How to Shorten Pattern Sleeves

How to Measure for Pattern Alterations

What You Should Know About the Cricut Maker

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut. The opinions and text are all mine.

001: Interview with Melissa Viscount of Silhouette School Blog

001: Interview with Melissa Viscount of Silhouette School Blog


Download this episode here!

The Style Blues Podcast is finally here! The first episode is now live!

Chambrayblues.com/stylebluespodcast/episode001
Episode 001

Show Notes:

Interviews are Inspiring:

One of the things I wanted to accomplish with this podcast is to inspire you with interviews of people who have been successful in their sewing related businesses. As creative people, sometimes we think too narrow when it comes to business and making money from what we love.

Using a computer aided design tool is one great way to make your sewing business into something that will make you money. These computerized tools, such as the Silhouette machine are changing the industry in that you can now make quality custom appliques or other items from home with relatively little investment. When I first heard about the Silhouette a few years ago I had no idea what I could use something like that for. I had a blogger friend who told me about “Silhouette School” and I thought she was talking about an actual school in Chicago. Haha! Now, I see Silhouette projects all over the internet!

Just to be clear, “Silhouette School” is not an actual school or place, it’s the name of Melissa Viscount’s blog. Melissa has been very successful in teaching others how to use their Silhouette machines. When I was making a list of potential people with successful businesses to interview for this podcast, Melissa was at the very top of my list. She has really inspired me and I hope you will enjoy listening to how she built her online business around what she loves to do.

So without further ado, here’s the interview:

Talking with Melissa Viscount:

Thank you for joining me today Melissa!

Questions:

Did you ever imagine that your Silhouette machine would change your life?

  1. For those who are not familiar with the Silhouette machine, can you tell us a bit about How the Silhouette machine works? Can you design your own cuts/stencils?
  2. Are available designs copyrighted for home or commercial use?
  3. What are the file types for? Example SVG, DXF, PNG, and EPS
  4. Can designs be scaled for childrens, adult clothing?
  5. Quilting patterns?
  6. Cutting other materials besides vinyl or fabric, wood or metal?
  7. What other things do people use the machine for?

 

What are some of your favorite projects that people have created with Silhouette School?

I understand that your husband works with you full time, how does that work? Boss lady and Bob? Love your #bosslady hashtag!

Tell me about your Silhouette conference? Is it just in Atlanta or other areas?

Where can people find you online, social media?

www.silhouetteschoolblog.com (blog)

www.silhouetteu.com (membership site)

www.ultimatesilhouetteguide.com (books)

www.sofontsy.com (design and font market)

Inspiration for Your Business:

Wow, was she inspiring or what? I just loved hearing her story and I am so thrilled she shared it with us. The potential for having the ability to create your own customized designs is huge. There are unlimited ways to use computerized tools like this in a home based business. Not sure if you caught her mention the gal that paid off her house by designing custom wooden hanger labels for brides? Wow! That is so amazing!

It’s interesting to me that Melissa’s niche is really in education. She mentioned that she doesn’t really do project tutorials but rather focuses on teaching others how to use their Silhouette machines. I think education is so important, sharing your knowledge can make a world of difference to someone else that may be struggling. Melissa does such a great job of that. I also find it fascinating that she is successful on a global scale. People around the world have read her Ebooks and applied her knowledge their businesses wherever they may live.

That’s all for today, thank you so much for listening! I will have more interviews coming up in the next few weeks. I hope you are inspired by today’s episode, I know I certainly was.

Learn More About Melissa:

Melissa Viscount is a Full time blogger at Silhouette School Blog.com and her new site, So Fontsy. Melissa is a wife, mom and author of 10 books on using the Silhouette Machine.

Melissa Viscount launched Silhouette School exactly 4 years ago on a whim after receiving a Silhouette Portrait from her husband for Christmas 2013. Since then more than 35 Million readers have enjoyed her more than 1000 free tutorials on how to use the Silhouette cutting machines, Silhouette Studio software, and accessories, techniques, and tools.  Due to demand from her very loyal readers, Melissa released her first ebook, The Ultimate Silhouette Guide, three years – and now 11 books ago. More than 80,000 copies of her guides – covering topics from Silhouette for business owners to designing in and mastering Silhouette Studio – have been sold since. Many are now sold with the Silhouette machine bundles. In June 2016 – Melissa’s husband, Bob, left his full time job in pharmaceuticals to join her full-time and take over the business side of their quickly growing Silhouette School brand. Shortly after, they launched their premium membership website Silhouette U – which – as of today – has nearly 5,000 active members. Just last week, they expanded their business again with the launch of So Fontsy – a commercial use design and font marketplace geared toward die cut crafters.

It’s amazing that Melissa has not only enjoyed blogging about Silhouette, but her expertise in the crafting industry has made her a sought after Silhouette (and blogging) instructor – having taught hundreds of crafters and fellow bloggers nationwide. She’s also served as a consultant to well established brands and well known brands in this craft industry – or those trying to tap into it.

She has been honored to be the keynote speaker at multiple craft and Silhouette conferences across the country including being invited back multiple times to the All Things Silhouette Conferences.

You can find out even more about Melissa by clicking on the links below:

www.silhouetteschoolblog.com (blog)

www.silhouetteu.com (membership site)

www.ultimatesilhouetteguide.com (books)

www.sofontsy.com (design and font market)

Style Blues Podcast Ep.001|ChambrayBluesBlog|Chambrayblues.com

Want to be a part of the Chambray Blues Sewing Community? Join the Facebook Group Here.

If you have questions about this episode contact us at info@chambrayblues.com.

 

How to Restyle a Boring Denim Jacket

How to Restyle a Boring Denim Jacket

We all have clothes in our closet we no longer wear, here are some tips on restyling and updating a boring denim jacket!

Re-Style Your Denim jacket, easy sewing project|Chambrayblues|chambrayblues.com
Don’t forget to Pin it!

Re-Style Your Boring Denim Jacket

I have had this denim jacket in my closet for a few years. Most of the time, I rarely wear it. The jacket is too short in the sleeves and body for me, and too small around the middle. I bought this denim jacket on a whim when I was at a blog conference and I needed a jacket while sitting in a cool room listening to the conference speakers. If I had thought about it longer, I wouldn’t have bought it in the first place because it didn’t really fit. Sometimes you do funny things when you are cold!

I didn’t want to give the jacket away since it is practically new, and I decided the best thing to do would be to restyle it so it suits me better. I added wide lace to the sleeves and hem to make the jacket longer so it fits me. Then I was able to add 2″ to the center front by removing the old button placket and adding wide pleated trim. The jacket now fits better around the midriff where I need it. It doesn’t button closed, but that’s okay since I never buttoned it up anyway. Here’s how I made all the adjustments.

Re-Style an Old Boring Denim Jacket|ChambrayBlues|chambrayblues.com
Change up your old jacket for a new look with bits of vintage lace and trims.

Supplies Needed:

• 3 yards of 4″ wide lace

• 2 yards rosebud trim (sold in the lace section at the fabric store)

• 1 spool 1/2″ wide edge lace

• 1/2 yard vintage lace for yoke (I used an old skirt)

• the legs from 1 pair old pair of denim jeans, cut into 2 1/2″ strips

• matching thread, scissors, sewing machine

Re-Style a Boring Denim Jacket|Chambrayblues|Chambrayblues.com
Use vintage lace to cover the front and back yoke.

Yoke Directions:

1. Lay your jacket on a table and pin seams together along the front and back yoke, neck and sleeve. Trace the front yoke shape onto a piece of craft paper. Add seam allowance and cut out. Repeat for the back yoke (this should be on the fold)

2. Place the pattern pieces on top of your vintage lace. I used the bottom hem of an old skirt that had a beige lining. Line up the bottom of the yoke of the pattern with the hem of the skirt or other finished edge of lace. Trace around the seams, adding 1/2″ seam allowance for the shoulder seam. Be sure pieces line up from the front to back shoulder. Cut out the front pattern piece. Repeat for the back yoke, using your first pattern piece as a guide to match the neck and seam edges. Cut the pattern out of your vintage lace.

I kept the existing skirt lining intact with my lace since I liked the light color behind the lace. You could also just let the denim show through the lace if you don’t have a lining.

Re-Style your Boring Denim Jacket|Chambrayblues|Chambrayblues.com

3. Stitch the front and back shoulders of the lace yoke together. Add 1/2″ narrow lace trim to finish armhole edge using a 2.5 zig-zag stitch setting. Fold under lace trim ends and secure.

4. Place the lace yoke on top of the right side of denim yoke. Pin in place. Zig-zag stitch in place with a narrow stitch (2.5) along neck edge, center front, bottom of yoke and armhole. Repeat for back yoke.

Re-Style a Boring Denim Jacket|Chambrayblues|Chambrayblues.com
Use vintage lace to cover the front and back yoke.

Updating the Center Front

1. Cut off front button placket from both sides of the jacket, leaving collar intact. Reserve extra pieces for another project.

2. Make pleated trim for jacket front. Cut off the legs from an old pair of jeans. Cut 6 strips of denim 2 1/2″ wide.

3. Pleat the denim strips by making 1″ folds in the denim with a salad fork as you sew. It’s a bit awkward at first, but you will soon see how easy it is to make even pleats. I love this method and will definitely use it again soon! Don’t worry about the raw edges, the fraying of the denim is part of this vintage charm!

4. Attach the pleated trim down the jacket front from collar to hem with a single needle stitch 3.0 setting. Overlap the pleated trim and center front edge by 1/2″ , pin in place. Top stitch 1″ away from first line of stitching on the right side. Be sure to catch any loose pockets in the seam, my jacket had pockets that were sewn into the original placket and I needed to anchor them in place to keep them from flopping about.

5. Cut a row of lace flowerettes and apply them down the center front on top of the pleated trim. Zig-zag stitch in place. You can use a different lace trim about 1″ wide instead if your lace is an allover pattern and doesn’t have rows.

6. Cut one row of flowers from the flower trim, zig zag stitch on either side of the trim along the center front, on top of the lace and pleats. I preferred my trim slightly off center, covering half of the lace for a unique effect.

Re-Style a Boring Denim Jacket|Chambrayblues|Chambrayblues.com
4″ gathered lace was added to the cuffs and hem of the jacket.

Updating the Jacket Cuffs and Hem

1. Gather the 4″ lace 1/2″ from top edge.

2. Fit lace to cuff edge, trim. Pin in place. Sew a zig-zag (3.0) stitch along edge on the wrong side of the cuff.

3. Add a flowered trim to cuff. Cut the floral trim to the same width and length as the cuff. Pin in place on right side of jacket. I cut the trim 1″ short to leave the button and button hole on the sleeve intact so it was still use-able.

4. Zig-zag stitch flower trim in place on top and bottom of cuff.

That’s it! This hack only cost me about $15.00. I already had the jacket and the lace skirt, so it was just a matter of purchasing the trims. We have lots of old jeans around the house and you can’t even tell that the pleated trim on the front of the jacket doesn’t match the rest of the jacket. It’s fun to mix up your old clothes and make them feel new again! Be sure to share pics in the Chambray Blues Sewing Group on Facebook if you remix your old jacket, we would love to see it!

Re-Style Your Denim jacket, easy sewing project|Chambrayblues|chambrayblues.com
Don’t forget to Pin it!

 

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