Hey there, makers!
It’s that time where we get to reveal the winner of the AGF Maker’s Spotlight! This is always such a difficult decision because everyone’s projects are so creative. For this round our winner is Lindsay from @lindsayinstiches!
We felt like her project was perfect for summer because every gal needs a comfy dress to wear during this hot weather. Plus, we loved how she hacked an existing tank pattern into a dress and made it with AGF Rayon! How cool is that?! Get to know Lindsay in our quick interview with and see how she jumped into garment sewing. ;)
1. Hi Lindsay! Can you tell us a little about yourself?
Hi there! I’m Lindsay, you can find me on Instagram as @lindsayinstitches. I live in a small town in Wisconsin with my husband and three little ones. By day, I work as a Pediatric Nurse. In my spare time, you can usually find me sewing in my basement studio. I mostly sew garments, though someday, I'd really love to get into quilting. I figure I'll start that if my girls ever stop wanting clothes made by mom. I also just started doing some embroidery. I'm having fun sneaking those hand stitched details into some of my makes as well!
2. We love how creative you get when sewing garments for yourself and your kids! When did you start sewing garments?
I started sewing about four years ago. I didn't grow up with a sewing mom or grandma, so I'm pretty much self-taught through great patterns, sewing blogs, and trial and error. In the beginning, it was a lot more error than anything! My husband actually bought me my first sewing machine as a Christmas present. I asked for one so that I could make curtains for our home. Funny thing, I’ve yet to make a single curtain!
It was a slow and challenging start, but sewing has now become a way of life for me. At first, I was in need of a creative outlet and way to de-stress. I’ve always been a crafty person, but I’m also pretty practical. It was hard for me to justify time spent on a hobby. By making clothing, I was fulfilling my own need for creativity, but also meeting a basic need for my kids.
Now, I consider sewing and making a part of who I am, it's ingrained in me. I don't feel as much need to justify why I do it, like I did a few years ago. While a majority of what I make does get regular wear, I give myself the grace to also make things for the sake of learning or simply, just because!
3. Tell us all about your fabric choice and the hack you did to sew this beautiful dress that won the AGF Makers Spotlight.
I’m a big fan of April’s work. I think I have used every one of her fabric collections. When Heritage fabrics was revealed, I thought it was so beautiful- both the designs and the story behind them. I was also thrilled to find out Art Gallery was producing rayon.
I used the Ogden Cami pattern from True Bias to make my dress. I’ve made a few Ogden cami’s in the past and find it to be a great staple pattern. I originally planned for this to be a looser fitting dress. Kelli, of True Bias, has a great tutorial on her blog on how to hack the Ogden Cami to a dress. While I love that boho look on others,I found that it just didn’t work on me. Since I had already included a fully lined bodice to accommodate the gathered skirt, I was able to easily add in an elastic channel at the waist to cinch it up.
This is an area I really feel I’m growing in as a garment sewist. I’m starting to recognize what fabrics, patterns and silhouettes work best for me. While there is nothing wrong with sewing a pattern as is (I still do that), I really love making little changes to help something better suit my style or vision. I’m so pleased with how this dress turned out. It is a really versatile piece and bonus- it is incredibly comfortable!
4. What did you love about sewing with AGF rayon?
AGF rayon has a beautiful hand and drape! Rayon is not always the easiest to work with, but this held a press beautifully and was quite opaque. I’m looking forward to working with it again! I can think of maybe, um, a thousand things I love to make!
5. What’s one of your most memorable sewing experiences?
One of the best stories in my life also involves a little sewing. When I was pregnant with my third child, we decided to find out the gender of the baby, like we had with our other two children. We were told in the ultrasound that we were having a boy. We already had a boy and a girl, so we were fine either way. I just like to plan!
The surprise of our life happened some months later when I delivered a beautiful baby GIRL into the world! Who knows what happened in that ultrasound appointment, we joke that the technician must have been new!
Anyways, on to the sewing part, I was so overjoyed to have another daughter to sew for that I ordered fabric online (a knit from Bonnie’s Winged collection!) from my hospital bed, just hours after she was born. I whipped up a matching headband and leggings the day after we brought her home! That was just the start of a whirlwind of baby girl sewing.
6.What’s your advice to those who want to venture into garment sewing but feel intimidated?
When I started sewing, I really had no idea what I was doing. If I can start from scratch, I’m sure anyone can. I started working with quilting cottons mostly because it was what was available at my local quilt shop. It ended up being for the best because I was able to work on the basics (hello bobbin tangles and tension issues!) without having the added challenges of shifty or stretchy fabric.
Look for patterns that don’t require a lot of fuss while you build your confidence. I had the best luck with Indie sewing patterns for ease of directions and accessibility in PDF format. Many of those pattern designers also have a lot of resources available through their blogs or websites to help you along. You can also consider choosing a pattern that has an online sew along or a designer/company with an active facebook group that can answer questions. It’s not the only way to go, but it worked well for me!
I hope you all enjoyed reading this interview! If you want to see more of Lindsay's creations follow her on Instagram at @lindsayinstiches. Make sure to post all your AGF projects with the hashtag #AGFMakersSpotlight for a chance to win a bundle of fabrics and a feature on our Instagram and the blog. :)
Till next time!