Thursday, September 10, 2009

This Etysian Drives a Sewing Machine

Meet Deb of looksSEWnice who drives her sewing machine in Maple Grove, Minnesota, where she creates classy and fun items for the home.

Deb fondly remembers her first sewing machine, the toy Sew Master.

Deb says "My first sewing machine was the toy Sew Master (shown above) which was given to me by my Uncle Roscoe for about my 8th birthday. It was the best present in the world and ran on a couple of D volt batteries. When those ran out, you simply turned the crank. I tried to sew beautiful Barbie clothes." What fun Deb must have had playing with and dressing her Barbies.

Deb graduated to using her mom's sewing machine but relates "when an older sister constantly said your sewing was no good and you had to rip, rip, rip out the seams" she stopped sewing. Deb didn't sew anymore until she was on her own and bought her first Singer at a garage sale. She says:
I quickly learned that I really hated to sew my clothes, but I loved sewing anything else. I bought some kits and sewed dolls, doll clothes and graduated to balloon valances. I had taken a Community Ed class on sewing curtains and valances and really enjoyed sewing home decor. Now I can go to Calico Curtains and places where they sell the nice stuff and if I stare at something long enough, I can usually go home and make it.

Finally, I bought my Elna after finding it at the Minnesota State Fair. I also got an Elna serger after my daughter was born so I could make stretchy things for her. I still enjoy making anything for the home and I believe that with a can of paint, a glue gun, a staple gun and my Elna machines, I can do pretty much anything around the house.
Oh Deb it is neat to learn how you found your own nitch, what gets you excited to put your foot to the pedal and make that Elna hum.

And here is a little of what Deb creates:

Table Runners with Beads on the Ends

This Rich Carmel Table Runner is one of Debs first designs in her table runner series. Deb really loves the rich carmel color, and the glass accent beads really pop the color. To sew closely to the strand of beads, Deb uses a zipper foot. Knowing her machine and choices in presser feet allows Deb to do very precise and accurate stitching.


This is the same as the Nemo and Dory Pillowcase that was Deb's first pillowcase sale on Etsy. She serged all the seams and uses sewing machine stitching reinforce ends to ensure the pillowcases not only look great but wash well. I really like how she makes the borders with the small accent strip and a deep hem in a companion fabric to the print in the body of the pillowcase. I also see a Mom who knows her kids, sitting at the machine creating kid friendly goods, in these pillowcases.


These are intentionally small placemats Deb has designed to fit well on a Bistro table, kitchenette, or in smaller surroundings. She plans to make more so stay tuned! Deb notes that she has clear plastic feet she uses on her sewing machine so she can topstitch nice and straight." That clearly works well!

I found lots of fun bright home decor in Deb's shop looksSEWnice and really enjoyed getting to know the woman at the machine. Hope you did too.

A very big thank you to Deb for taking time to chat with me and share her sewing story.
And especially to brave being the first interviewee in this series about "Etsyians who Drive a Sewing Machine.


Anonymous said...

Great article about Deb. She made pillow cases for my son a few years ago. He loves them! Best of all they are REALLY well made so have sustained many many washings. You have to buy these from her. Leslie

lookssewnice said...

I can't thank Jane enough for this nice article about me! She's been just great fun to work with and she is a terrific writer. I look foward to reading about all the sewing machine drivers out there!

Glorious Hats said...

Leslie, Thanks so much for finding us and for your supportive comments. Such a wonderful recommendation. Deb rocks! for sure.

Deb, you are so welcome. I love to sew, but for me that is wearables, so pleased to find someone who loves home dec and does it so well.

Judi B said...

I will be checking back with you Jane. Looking forward to confabbing on "Make a Hat Day" coming up soon! Here's my blog.

My Mother's Garden said...

Jane and Deb, great interview! What fun! I love the picture and fond memory Deb's very first sewing machine.

Kaja said...

Oh I looove to read things like that. I just counted my sewing machines yesterday, and right now I got five of them... I can't understand how that happened. *LOL*

And I am still drewling over an embroidery machine...

niftyknits said...

Great interview idea Jane, you're soooo on trend :-)

StudioCherie said...

Wonderful article.