Friday, July 19, 2013

Handmade Confessions: Anita from Sew Charmingly Quilted

I'm so happy to have Anita from Sew Charmingly Quilted to share her confession today. Hers is one that I can certainly relate to-- and I'm sure quite of you will feel the same way!

Before we get to her confession, I just have to let you know what a sweetheart she is! She was one of the first people I asked to participate in this series, and she's made a point of cheering everyone each Friday.

She's also incredibly talented. On Sew Charmingly Quilted she shares a book reviews and, of course, sewing projects. I love this 'giant star quilt top'-- I'm digging triangles lately, and this is just such a neat pattern.

She also has quite a few clothing and accessory posts! Check out these super hero capes.
And these sweet bags...

So... what motivates her to sew all this? You'll have to read her confession to find out :)

I can’t believe I’m up to share a ‘Confession’ on Palak’s blog, Make It Handmade!  I feel honored that I’m here and that I was invited to share.  I've been enjoying all the confessions along the way and wondering what on earth I could possibly confess too…

My name is Anita and I blog over at Sew Charmingly Quilted.  While I’m not new to the blogging world, I only started my current blog at the beginning of the year.  Some days, I’m so busy homeschooling two children, working part-time, and being a wife and mother, that my blog gets neglected…and so does my sewing. =(  This summer is no exception.  I’ve only touched my machine a handful of times and I do miss it.  In the past, I sewn for a little extra income.  Now I sew for pleasure.  I give most everything I make away and find the greatest joy comes from making others smile with handmade!

Well, on to my confession….
I keep thinking, as I write this…"I hope they don’t hate me…scorn me…or stop reading when they see my confession"…because I really think it’s a product of my upbringing.  Are you ready, do you want to know what it is?  Hold on to your hats, here it comes…I’m cheap!  That’s right.  You can sugar coat it and say “frugal”, but the fact of the matter is, I am always looking for a bargain or FREE, which is even better.  I know that entire mindset comes from growing up without any frills; don’t get me wrong, we had what was necessary to live, but we didn’t splurge on extras.  Now that I’m married, with a family, and living on a budget, but loving to craft, making wise decisions on where I spend my ‘mad money’ is very important.

I am a sucker for Joann Fabric’s 50% off coupons and I love shopping their racks of clearance fabric whenever they have a sale for an additional 50% off the lowest ticket price.  There’s nothing better than finding a yard of fabric for $1.50-$2!  It makes me happy.  Of course, if I’m looking for designer fabric, I tend to Google online until I find the best possible price.  I love the word ‘Destash’ on Etsy, because it means I can find a bargain when someone else is cleaning out their closets.  Rummage sales, flea markets, Ebay, Etsy, and Clearance are all areas where you’ll find me earning frequent shopper points.

When it comes to the actual sewing, which I've been doing since I was 12(thanks, Mom), I’m always trying to find a free tutorial or looking around for ideas to attempt figuring it out for myself.  (I do this for crafting too.)  I've had many successes figuring things out on my own.  However, I've also had failures, which you won’t see pictured in this post. =)

For example, a few years ago, I saw someone with a purse made from a placemat.  I decided, I can do that, no problem.  Next thing you know, I'm sewing and selling placemat totes.                                      
It didn't take long for me to branch out.  I began sewing and selling tote bags with linings.  I even consigned in a local shop for a while.  However, after sewing hundreds of similar bags, it does get old.  I had to try other things, so as not to go crazy.  I did occasionally buy patterns, but I made the majority of my bags without them.
My ‘trying other things’ included sewing tea wallets, dolls, aprons, clothes, zippered pouches, dish towels, Bible covers, and a few other things over the years, without patterns or from free tutorials.  I even tried my hand at making jewelry, knit ruffle scarves, some crocheted items, and embroidery.

Basically, if I think I can do it myself, I have to try, as opposed to paying someone else to make it.  This saves my husband a lot of money, however, it does tend to make a lot of work for me. =)

Now, I spend the majority of my time sewing quilts, mostly from free tutorials online, like this baby quilt   
I’m so thankful for crafters who are willing to share their expertise with others.  Free tutorials are an amazing blessing!

That’s how I came across Palak’s blog, Make it Handmade.  She was featuring a tutorial for a zippered pouch at Moda Bake Shop and I knew I had to give it a go!
I figure it doesn't have to cost a lot to give something beautiful.  We have so much available to us online, why not put it to good use!

Thanks again, Palak for the opportunity to share my confession.

Thanks Anita! I think so many of us can relate to sewing on a budget- and sewing to help our budgets. I love a good bargain-- and now I'm off to search for Etsy destashes!

Head on over to Sew Charmingly Quilted and send Anita some love!