“A woman is a full circle. Within her is the power to create, nurture and transform"
The above quote always comes to my mind when I think of this beautiful lady…Ms. Faye (lovingly known as Fayedoll) of Faye’s Sewing Adventure! She is the epitome of a “giving” person and will gift others her valuable (selfless) time in assisting them to flourish! I’ve been a recipient of that selfless giving on many occasions! When she’s not nurturing our youth on a path to greatness during her day job, she’s sharing her knowledge with others in our sewing community so they can be their best in whatever path they have chosen. Faye reinforces what is great about this world we live in! An awesome example of the “selfless” dispensing of her time, is throughout the years, Faye spent countless hours interviewing other bloggers and showcasing them on her blog. (I was one of her honored guests!! YEA ME!)
Now let’s talk about her creative side…Faye loves creating coats and if you’ve not seen any of her creations, you MUST visit her blog and check out her archives! They are truly labor of loves for her and it shows in her work! You’ll see a few of her fashions below and get just a little more information on this exceptional lady! I hope you all enjoy the interview…
1. Hello Ms. Faye, can you tell us a little about your sewing process? (How you determine what to sew next?).
I’ve been sewing for quite some time now and must admit that it has finally gotten to the place that “what I sew next” is rarely based on need. It’s usually prompted by something I’ve seen on someone else’s blog, in a catalog or magazine, in public, or even something I’ve seen one of my students wearing. There is something awfully satisfying when I see a design I like and instantly think “I can make that”!
2. How did you learn to sew? Have you had formal training, or are you self taught?
My sewing experience began when I was a little girl sitting next to my Great-grand Mother on rainy afternoons watching her sew on a Singer treadle machine. I caught all her scraps and used them to hand sew Barbie clothes. That was nice, but what I really wanted to do was use her sewing machine. She’d sew for a while and then stop to make dinner. But before she left her sewing area she’d firmly say, “Now don’t you mess with my sewing machine Faye”. Well, she might as well have said, “go ahead and have yourself some fun while I’m gone little girl. Sew to your heart’s content”. As soon as she was out of the room I was in her seat peddling that machine. Needless to say, I didn’t know what in the world I was doing! I once broke the machine’s belt because I couldn’t control the treadle motion; on another occasion broke her glasses that she had left on the machine’s table extension. My Granny was a spanking Granny so I was punished on both occasions. Did that stop me? Heck no!
Fast forward to eighth grade Home Economics class where I guess I thought I was going to be the next great fashion designer, haha! The first thing we had to do was learn to stitch straight lines – on notebook paper no less. I started out the worst straight line stitcher in the whole class, but did that stop me? Heck no! We made an apron, a pull over top, and a dress with a back zipper. (We skipped the pillow making session that everybody talks about – go figure.) I still have my 8th grade apron, can you imagine? I took a Home EC class every year from eighth grade to twelfth. Much later in life I took a short tailoring class which at the time was FAR above my sewing skill level and mental capacity. The best things that came from that were the good shears, a tailor’s ham and a seam roll that I had to purchase for the class. I still have those items them today, but took away very little tailoring knowledge from that experience.
3. Where do you find sewing inspiration?
Inspiration POPS up everywhere for me! Television, magazines, fashion catalogs, what my students wear, the public and of course from other bloggers like yourself.
4. Do you ever find yourself in a sewing slump? If so, how do you pull yourself out of it?
I do find myself in a sewing slump once or twice a year, and it dumbfounds me every time it happens. It occurs when seasons change for some reason. I guess because I never really manage to sew everything I’ve planned for the current season, so I tend to drag my feet when it comes to planning for the new season. Crazy I know! For some reason I slump right after returning home from a vacation – go figure! At times I can snap my way out of it by doing some forced sewing – and just sew my way through it if that makes sense.
5. What are your favorite items to sew?
Okay, watch me contradict myself here! I am definitely a top person, but on the other hand I really love making skirts. No wait, I REALLY, REALLY love to tailor coats and of course jackets are nice. See, I told you - trying to tell you my favorite items to sew is a real contradiction.
6. What garment(s) to date would you call your masterpiece(s)?
I don’t know if it’s a masterpiece, but rather the garment I most love - my cute little pea coat from a Michael Kors Vogue pattern. I had had the pattern for eons but was afraid that it was far above my skill level. But then when I saw that pattern made up by Erica of Erica Bunker.com and Lori of Girls in the Garden, I just had to have it. I finally got up enough nerve to give it my best shot during a Fearless February Challenge on Victoria’s blog, Ten Thousand Sewing Hours. Had it not been for Victoria urging me to throw fear in the wind, the pattern would still be in the stash drawer uncut. I pulled out a raspberry woolen fabric from my stash that had been gifted to me by my friend Ebony of The Glam Doll and gave it my best shot. Every winter when the temperatures turn chilly, I pull it out of the closet, give it a hug and say “Hello my love”!
7. What are your favorite “brick & mortar” fabric sources? (Just in case we visit your area!)
Until just recently if you had visited my area all I would have been able to offer was Hancock Fabrics and JoAnn’s. I’M JUST SICK ABOUT HANCOCK’S CLOSING NEEDLESS TO SAY! BUT, I am so thankful that we still have JoAnn’s locally. I do get to go to Fine Fabrics in Atlanta once or twice a year.
Do you ever shop for fabric online? If so, what are your favorite online fabric sources?
I have purchased fabric online, but not very much. I’m a touchy feely type of fabric buyer. I have ordered from Fabric.com, FabricMart, Denver Fabrics and Gorgeous Fabrics only on occasion. I have placed a whole lot of fabric in their shopping carts however; just never pushed the purchase button. Good thing too; because I still have a few more mortgage payments to make.
8. Would you share a couple of your favorite sewing tips?
One of my favorite sewing tips is actually a technique that everybody uses I’m sure, and that is understitching. I think it’s magical! I just love the way a facing behaves after understitching – it’s just magical and a technique well worth incorporating!
I love a great buttonhole – who doesn’t, right?! A friend advised me to stabilize my buttonholes with tear-away stabilizer, and now my buttonholes are wonderful!
9. If you could only have five (5) patterns, which five would that be and why?
Mmmmm, although I’ve asked many people to answer that question – it is a very hard question. I love ALL 1,000 plus of my paper babies that I call “Paper Possibilities”, but I’ll try.
I would have fought someone to get this pattern in my stash. I love it because it’s so darn cute! I use to think peplum designs were not for my body shape but I WAS WRONG. They give you the illusion of an hour glass (ha ha). Whenever I need a quick gift this is the pattern I use and it is always greatly appreciated.
Really if you are not careful you’ll pass this one up, but don’t because it has great possibilities to be such a SIMPLE coat pattern. I like view A.
I Love, love, love the Mable knit skirt pattern. Yes I know there are many other knit skirt patterns, but this one really has a slimming effect with its front panel. I’ve made about 10 Mable’s counting the ones I’ve sold. And no, you don’t have to make it this short.
10. Thank you for showing us your sewing space during the Periscope Tour of Rooms! For those who didn’t get a chance to see it, can you tell them a little about the machines you use?
My main machine is a Baby Lock Sophia 2 that I’ve been using for about 3 years. I bought it because (cough, cough, I thought) I was going to do embroidery (I thought) – but I only use it as a sewing machine. I have two Singer sergers, one threaded with off white and the other with black. That’s it – no more color matching serger thread for this girl.
I also have a vintage Singer that I purchased as a heavy duty machine. I paid $35.00 for it when Hancock’s once sold used sewing machines, and it’s a real work horse.
I’ve given away two other machines to people who needed them. I’ve often heard that what you give away is what you get. If I give away enough sewing machines maybe someone will gift me a Bernina one day (hahaha, but really, it could happen)!
I hope you’ve enjoyed the brief walk through Ms. Faye’s sewing adventures and if you’ve not already subscribed to her blog, you should! You’ll truly be entertained and I think you just might learn something too!
Thank you so much for stopping by my blog and sharing a little of your time with Ms. Faye and I!