Today I have great pleasure in introducing you to Robin Sheaffer of
I first 'met' Robin back in March when I made a callout for pattern testers for my Genevieve pattern! Boy I am sure glad that Robin responded! She's a FAB tester....always completing on time and always gives helpful feedback too! BUT.....I am sure you don't want to read my rambling on so let me hand over the post to Robin instead! :)
Take it away Robin...........
When did you start to sew?
In the fall of 2009, a friend at work showed me a one day hand quilting class at a historical society. I made a wonderful little 6” square all by hand.
It all took off from there. That Christmas I picked out my first real sewing machine!!
Who taught you to sew or are you self-taught?
I have taken a hand full of classes, maybe five or so. Most notably a crumb class by Bonnie Hunter, which was a blast. If you ever get the chance to take one of her classes, I would highly recommend you do it. She is very fun and energetic. I have also purchased a few Craftsy classes in the last year but have yet to watch them!! Other than that, I am pretty much internet taught! There are tutorials all over the internet by wonderful sewers thanks to the world of blogging!
What sort of things do you like to sew?
I started out sewing quilt tops but about halfway through I would get bored and start a new pattern for variety. My husband started calling me the great block lady! So I started searching for smaller in between projects. Since I already had a bag obsession it seemed logical to try my hand at bag making. Nothing like combining two addictions into one! Bags and totes are also a good way to learn a bundle of techniques like zippers, other closures, grommets and adding elastic.
I recently made new curtains and panels for a set of French doors. I have also made seat cushions, wallets, fabric baskets, slippers and who knows what else!! So now I believe I have sewn everything except clothing. That is my next sewing goal!
Do you like to use patterns or do you prefer to make it up as you go along?
I always start with a pattern, especially to learn a technique, and then go out on my own or alter a pattern to my tastes after that. I love raw edge appliqué and for that I use a lot of coloring pages for patterns. I also like to be a blog surf for inspiration. There are some pretty amazing people out there creating some fabulous stuff!
Have you made something that is your all-time favourite creation? If so, why?
The beginning of this year I came across a new QAL for the Something New Sampler from 13 Spools. I decided that it was a great way to learn new techniques without doing a whole quilt with each one. So I grabbed a F4 set I had on hand and got going. About half way through someone mentioned that the colors reminded her of gingerbread cookies. Ah ha! Inspiration! As appliqué is my favourite, I cut out some playful gingerbread men and sewed them onto the finished top. I wanted it to be a sampler without looking like a sampler and it worked out exactly as I had planned. This is my favourite creation so far!!
If you would like to see more pics of my work you can go to my Flicker page and browse around. Craft Phanatic.
Do you have a favourite fabric type you prefer to work with? Favourite Fabric line or fabric designer?
So far I have only worked with cotton. As I learn to make clothing I hope to try my hand at different fabrics. I love all types of fabric patterns from reprints to retro to contemporary. It all depends on the project, who I’m making it for and my mood at the time!!
Any sewing secrets you would like to share?
I love all the new little notions that come out on almost a daily basis but I don’t get too many of them. I must say that I do love using the washable Elmer’s glue for all kinds of tasks. I use it to baste, to fuse appliqué pieces to backgrounds among other things. Whoever came up with that tip is my best friend!! I also use a lot of double-sided tape to cut out bag patterns and it is also great for taping thicker seams together instead of pinning. It’s just really important to make sure the tape is out of the seam allowance so you don’t sew over it!! Why, however would I know that?! hehe
What type of machine/s do you have?
I have a Janome Memory Craft 6600, which was my first machine. I also have a Juki straight stitch machine for FMQing and a Janome Gem Gold for taking to classes or setting up on the patio. Oh, and I just bought a Janome 350E for embroidery. All I need now is a surger!
Do you have any sewing goals?
My goal for the next year is learning how to make clothing. I am always so gung ho to try new techniques in quilting and bag making but I am petrified to try my hand a making clothing! I’m not sure where the fear comes from but there it is. Maybe I’m just afraid of having a wardrobe malfunction!!!!! hehe
Does a bear.....well...do things...in the woods?!!!! I’m pretty sure that I have more UFOs right now than all my finishes since I started sewing!
When do you find time to sew?
Since the kids are in college I can sew when the mood hits! Usually, after my husband and I have dinner and finish cleaning up, he goes to watch his Pit Masters and I go sew. We spend the evening together in separate rooms!!
Do you have any other hobbies you like to indulge in?
I have done every craft known to mankind!! But now I stick mainly to sewing and gardening. However, I have recently begun to dye my own fabric thanks to a wonderful blogging friend, Joan, at Moosestash Quilting. This is a very fun way to be creative and messy and end up with a usable product!!
Anything about you and your family you would like to share?
I am a 40 something wife and mother with two dogs.
I am having a ball with my sewing obsession. I am also having a ball with my new blog and have made many friends through both. I love the way sewing brings together people from all over the world. I am so happy to be able to learn about all the places in the world that I will never get to on a personal level. I would recommend to anyone out there who is dragging their feet on starting a blog to just jump in and do it!
Thank you Robin for a very interesting read! Now here is the FUN part! Robin has very generously offered a GIVEAWAY of a fabric box (a tutorial from Seaside Stitches) that she will make for the winner either in holiday fabric, as shown, or everyday fabric.
Robin made hers to store her fabric postcards! She may even include some scraps to get the winner started on creating their own fabric postcards! Wouldn't that be nice! The giveaway is open to everyone, regardless of where in the world you are! :)
Next week we have another Pattern Designer Interview! I had such FUN reading that interview....expecially when I got to the part where this designer mentioned that when she first launched her patterns in her Etsy shop and found they did well , she had promised to buy herself an iPad once she had sold enough patterns for one....which is exactly what I have in mind for the current pattern I am working on at the moment! LOL :) anyway....you will have to wait until next week to find out just whom that designer is!
Haha....I already know.....hehehe......
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