1. Signature

    May 5, 2014 by Sadie

    Look what I inherited! My mom’s first sewing machine from 1969. It is a Signature Zig Zag that she purchased at Montgomery Wards. She got it when she was in High School. She dropped it off to me yesterday and I immediately cleaned and oiled the old girl. She purrs! The stitch quality is amazing and it is surprisingly quiet. It weighs a ton, is all metal parts and made in the USA. Vintage machines are the best. If you can get your hands on one, I highly recommend them.Mom's Machine

  2. Fresh Start

    March 10, 2014 by Sadie

    Polly Top

    Polly Top

    Peter Pan Collar ClassHappy March!

    One of my goals for this year is to start another Etsy store for selling clothes. It is still a work in progress, but I am thinking one of kind designs by me, vintage frocks and maybe even some up-cycled refashioned gems. I also want to refresh my existing vintage pattern store. I have some incredible patterns that aren’t my size; besides I can’t make them all!

    There will be some fun new classes at Fancy Tiger coming this spring. I will be teaching others how to add a sweet Peter Pan collar to a store bought tee and how to sew up a cute new tank called the Polly Top by Handmade London. It is a FREE pattern you can find here! Spring is coming, believe it or not. Now is the time to refresh your wardrobe for the coming season.

    I am looking forward to working on new and exciting projects for the Denver Art Museum in 2014. I just wrapped up some stitching for Rupprecht Matthies exhibit and if you have a chance, you should check it out. Only there a short while more.

    I am super excited for my dear friend Claudia of Sew You Studio who has recently moved into an adorable new space! If you know a child who wants to learn to sew, check out her schedule of classes! I hope to collaborate with her on some special crafty events this year too! Stay tuned.

  3. Giveaway Day 2013

    December 9, 2013 by Sadie

    Congratulations Maureen Hayes! You are the winner of my infinity scarf. Happy Holidays everyone and thank you for all the wonderful comments.

    Happy Holidays! This year I am giving away one of my Pendleton/Liberty Infinity Scarves. I think they make the perfect gift. The Pendleton shirting provides warmth and the Liberty lawn adds a touch of soft luxury. I teach others how to make these here in Denver at Fancy Tiger Crafts. Please leave a comment on this post. Winner will be selected at random on December 13th at 5:01 PM PST and notified by December 15th. I will ship internationally!

    Check out Sew Mama Sew for more giveaways and good luck!


  4. I love Being Home

    November 11, 2013 by Sadie

    I recently had the pleasure to meet, volunteer and work with artist Rupprecht Matthies. He is a Denver Art Museum favorite and a sweet man to be around.

    Rupprecht Matthies ¿Being Home? returns on November 10th to the Denver Art Museum. It is a great spot for kids and adults to visit, unwind, create and think of what home means to them! Check it out.

    Here is an excerpt from the DAM site about Rupprecht’s ¿Being Home?: “A community inspired, interactive artwork by Rupprecht Matthies that changes with each presentation, ¿Being Home?—initially installed in 2009 as part of the Embrace! exhibition—is an immersive environment made up of colorful word sculptures made of foam, wood and fabric, among other materials. Matthies uses a highly collaborative process to gather words in many languages through community workshops, turning participants’ words into sculptural elements within the installation. Included in general admission.”

    I am currently assisting and stitching up new words for the installation that were chosen by Hispanic immigrant students studying at Centro San Juan Diego! These new pillows will be added throughout the coming months.

  5. Lots of DAM Projects

    October 18, 2013 by Sadie

    This past summer I started a new contract position with the Denver Art Museum as a Fiber & Textile Artist. I have done several projects for them and I hope to continue to work on fun and creative things.

    My first project was to design and create the fun activities that go inside the Western Exhibit backpacks. Kids can check these out at the museum and take along as they view the art. It was so much fun creating the cowboy bedroll and the western wear for the little magnetic cowboy.

    The next project I worked on was a collaboration with Textile Artist Bree Angela. We made seven Ming Dynasty costumes for kids and Bree masterfully painted them. I can’t wait to take my girls to the museum to pose for some pictures!

    I then had the opportunity to be part of the Denver Art Museum Community Quilt Project. I assembled the artists quilt block submissions and arranged them on a color blocked background. This is a four story tall quilt in the atrium of the museum!

    My most recent project is repairing fabric words from the previous Being Home exhibits by artist Rupprecht Matthies

    The repaired pillows will be combined with new pillows created this month for the exhibit which opens in November.
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  6. Deciphering Patterns on Atly

    July 17, 2013 by Sadie

    I have more exciting news! My latest online class Deciphering Patterns is now available on Atly.

    Atly is the latest online educational site where students can learn, study and interact with instructors at their own speed in the comfort of their own home. Atly’s class list keeps growing but there are great classes on cooking, writing, shopping, sewing and now pattern reading!

    If you enjoy sewing but are intimidated by sewing patterns, check out my class. You will be using and sewing with patterns in no time.

  7. Sewing Patterns for Beginners – Sadie’s Picks

    July 15, 2013 by Sadie

    I love sewing patterns! To me, they seem like little envelopes full of possibility. There are times when I make myself a garment almost exactly the same as the one featured on the front of the packaging. Other times I use an unexpected fabric or make a change to the pattern itself. Patterns can be used as inspiration for a creative and custom made wardrobe.

    After years of teaching there are a few patterns that really stand out to me. I thought I would share some of my favorites. Of course this list could change as new patterns are produced and I have time to give both new and old patterns a try.

    Sew Liberated’s Schoolhouse Tunic
    This pattern is fun to make. It has flattering box pleat features and sleeves. I have made several of these. I have made a sleeveless version. I have made it into a top. I have buttoned up the front opening with vintage buttons. I have even given them as gifts. It is a great class to teach students how to set sleeves. I love the designers clear and easy to follow directions.

    Amy Butler’s Barcelona Skirt
    This is a classic A-line skirt. It is lined and has a zipper. Both great skills for a beginner to learn. Plus the A-line is figure flattering on all body types. I have never made the apron overlay, but I think the possibilities are endless with this pattern.

    Simplicity 1609 two Piece Dress
    This is a remake of a 60′s vintage Jiffy pattern. I love vintage patterns and bet I even have this original in my stash somewhere. What is great about the big pattern companies reissuing vintage patterns is that the instructions have been updated and are much easier to follow. This particular pattern is only two main pattern pieces with variations for a collar and a bow! This would be so cute for summer in a crisp linen or made in a nice black brocade for a special evening. This is a very versatile pattern.

    Heather Ross’s Mendocino Sundress
    Not only is this pattern FREE to download it is crazy cute and simple to make. I first saw this when Heather Ross was on the Martha Stewart Show teaching how to make a child’s version of the sundress. . She was wearing a strapless version and looks so freaking cute. This pattern uses elastic thread and is a fun and easy skill to learn with endless possibilities.

    Lisette 1878 by Simplicity Patterns
    Lisette patterns are designed by the talented Liesl Gibson of Oliver & S. This is another figure flattering a-line dress pattern. It is called the Diplomat. You have the choice of three lengths and three different sleeve options. I have made version B, but I am dying to make the long version out of some Liberty fabric and belt it! Another thing I love about the Lisette pattern line is that they give you accessory styling tips right on the front of the envelope.

    Wiksten Tova
    Okay, so the Wiksten Tova is marked as an intermediate level pattern. However, I think an advanced beginner would have no problem whipping one of these up. It is lovely in linen and lighter weight woven cottons or blends. The pattern is for a dress or top and prefer this in the top. The dress silhouette is not flattering for my body type. It is fun to make. The pattern is beautifully designed and there is a challenging pleated front feature that makes it unique.

    Miz Mozelle by Jamie Christina
    Here is a sweet vintage inspired dress pattern. It has a peter pan collar and keyhole neckline. I find this to be a feminine and flattering shape for me. The pattern recommends using a drape fabric, but I have also made it out of cotton and it turns out adorable.

    Laurel by Colette Patterns
    Here is another simple shift dress. What sets this one apart from others is the beautiful and well written pattern booklet and instructions. Plus all the extra tips, tricks and tutorials you can find on the Colette site. If you are not familiar with Colette Patterns yet, you should be. This pattern is for beginners. However, she offers a free pdf download with nine other variation ideas that make this pattern a great base to add creative ideas.

    Socialite Dress by Anna Maria Horner
    I love this dress. Yes, I chose another shift. I love them. This one has two things that I love about it. First, it has pockets. Any garment with pockets is better. Second, it has lovely gathered details in the front and back along the yoke. It is flattering and can be work in any season. I have worn layered with sweaters and boots and flip flops.

    I hope you find this list helpful and maybe even discovered some patterns you didn’t know about. Please share your favorite patterns and what you love about them. I am always looking for a new project to try.

    Happy Sewing!

  8. For the Love of Laurel

    April 26, 2013 by Sadie

    There is a new pattern from Colette Patterns called Laurel. What a fun pattern! It can be embellished and altered to meet your individual style. There is also a free downloadable booklet that includes nine other variations of the pattern! I LOVE IT!

    In Denver? Come learn to make a lovely Laurel with me at Fancy Tiger this summer!

  9. Geometric Keyhole Blouse

    April 7, 2013 by Sadie

    In preparation for one of my upcoming classes at Fancy Tiger this spring I whipped up this silk blouse. There is something about silk blouses that feels very old fashioned and feminine to me. Even in this geometric tribal print I feel like I am wearing something my grandmother would have worn to work. Paired with skinny jeans and some orange sandals for spring.

    This pattern is from one of my FAVORITE sewing books: Weekend Sewing by Heather Ross.

  10. Spring Break Crafternoon

    March 24, 2013 by Sadie

    I subscribe to only two magazines right now. One is BurdaStyle Magazine, which I love. The other is Mollie Makes. My heart beats a little faster when I find the latest issue in my mailbox! Issue 25 was no exception. The girls and I got started right away on some bunnies! It is spring break and we have a few days home to craft and pack for an upcoming epic adventure to Disney World!

    Happy Spring. Happy Easter.