welcome To The One Thimble Blog
Today I’m super excited to have Lindsey from Ellie and Mac on the blog. In One Thimble Issue 13 Lindsey shared with us her tips for using an Embroidery Machine and showed us how to make applique patches using an embroidery machine.
I really loved chatting with Lindsey. She’s got such an upbeat life attitude and so many of the things she had to say about creating and business had me nodding along, thinking, “WOW, I believe that too!!!”
Tell me a little about your business and how you got into sewing.
I am the owner and designer of Ellie and Mac (Formerly Little 4 Awhile) Sewing Patterns. Creating has always been a common theme in my life from as young as I can remember. My grandmother was a maker and she always had me tinkering with some form of craft project and my parents are also creators. They have owned various businesses selling their handmade goods as a hobby and have allowed their creative passions to evolve and change into the next thing that excites them.
For me, sewing entered my life when I had my first daughter, Aubrey. I was young and was so excited by the colors and artistic flare that boutique clothing exuded, that I wanted her to be able to wear these amazing works of art! I couldn’t afford them, so I asked my mother for a sewing machine for Christmas and taught myself to sew. I didn’t realize until several years later that I truly had a gift for putting colors and fabrics together. Sewing then became my passion.
What/where/who inspires you?
Colors and fabric inspire me as well as women that are sharing their passion with the world through design and creating change.
I can’t help but get giddy inside when I see new fabrics perfectly paired next to one another in bright color palettes and fun patterns. My mind takes off designing a new pattern and I can see the garment coming to life, as my fingers run across fabric. It is hard not to stop whatever I was working on before and jump right into this new idea that has been born. I have had to learn a bit of discipline in that department, to be able to finish projects and not hop onto the next before seeing the one before completed. However, I am grateful for such a vibrant imagination and try not to tell it no very often.
I am also all about empowering women to follow their dreams and find the thing that makes them just as excited as designing does for me. I am always blown away by how creative the sewing community is and love seeing other pattern companies amazing creations, beautiful photography that displays a seamstress’s work, new fabrics designed by an independent artist, and women running their own businesses, selling things they made.
I love seeing the cooperation mindset taking hold and drowning out the old, tired competitive way of thinking. I believe there is plenty of business to go around and the more we help one another on our creative journeys by sharing the things we have learned, offering encouragement when needed, rallying in support when someone is being cut down, and sharing in the collective love of creating will only make us better as a community. How can you not be inspired by that?
What’s your best tip for people getting started with sewing?
My best tip for a new sewer, is to be open to where the journey takes you. This is true with the process as well as the ending. When you are just starting out, you might have all these ideas of what the finished project must look like and that there is only one way to get there.
I have learned so many things from failing on projects and most of the time the things that I did wrong turned out to be happy accidents because they created this cool look that I would never have tried for in the beginning.
I recommend reading patterns all the way through before starting a project. Sometimes we get so excited that we jump right in and read as we go. This can be okay, but most of the time if you take time to read the instructions and figure out the steps before you begin, you will save yourself valuable time not having to seam rip or yell in frustration.
Also, embrace the community. There are SO many sewing groups, pattern company groups, video tutorials and more on social media and blogs, that you have this never-ending source of education at your fingertips. Take advantage of that and you can learn so much in a short time.
What’s your favourite pattern/ thing you have sewn?
In all honesty, this question has been the hardest to answer for me. How do you choose just one pattern to call the favourite? It is like having to pick a favourite child, you just can’t. I love many patterns, just like my children for all their special qualities that make them unique. I love the new Be Mine Cardigan Pattern I designed because it has arched bodices and a flowy skirt to it. I love that there are many sleeve options that allow it to take a different form each time. Cuddling up in a cardigan is one of life’s sweet moments.
I love the Sunshine Romper Pattern because there is nothing better than watching your little one run through the park on a warm summer day.
Finally, I love the Beatbox Romper Pattern because my son and daughters can wear this comfy creation all day and still look amazing at the same time.
My kids love comfort and so do I! I guess that is why all these patterns have a comfort theme.
What you are working on now?
This year I am focusing on updating all the older patterns on the website so that they are up-to-date with the new standards of quality that I have at Ellie and Mac.
All our new patterns are on no trim pattern pages to save people time and frustrating during pattern assembly. They all include the layers printing feature so that only the sizes needed can be selected and printed to save ink and provide more clarity. Pattern pieces are provided for all parts of the pattern. Instruction layout has been changed to a portrait style vs. the landscape that I used to use and are designed in a better software for a more professional look.
My goal is to have all the patterns to this standard by the end of the year. No one will be required to repurchase an updated pattern they already own. They can simply login to their account and download the update from their order history.
What’s something people might not know about you?
Something most people might now know about me is that I LOVE to grocery shop. I know that sounds like the most boring thing in the world, but it is true!! I love walking up and down all the aisles and finding the things I need. I really enjoy it when I take one of our kids or my husband and just spend the time chatting with them and enjoying the experience. Maybe it is all the colors that draw me in on the packaging, I am not sure. I just know that a hot tea in my hand as I stroll through the grocery store just puts a smile on my face.
Through till the end of February 2018 you can get 35% OFF all Ellie and Mac patterns. No code needed – the prices will be automatically discounted in your cart.