The History of a Girl and Her Sewing Machine
I’ve always loved costumes and dressing up. When I was growing up I was a little performer, putting on plays and skits complete with costumes. Before I could sew, my costumes came from raiding through my mum’s wardrobe and my first forays into sewing came in the form of making costumes and clothes for my dolls.
By the time I was in high school I was helping my mum make my clothes and taking over the making of the costumes for school plays. By 17 I know what I wanted to do and finally got some professional training in costume design and construction.
During college I discovered a not-so-secret passion for period clothing,
more specifically 19th Century outfits (much of my late teens were
spent swooning over despairing Byronic heroes)
While studying at university I developed a love of social and domestic
history (not to mention a devotion to all things Jane Austen related). I
began to consider ways of combining my life’s two passions – books and
costumes into a career.
By the time I graduated with a BA (Hons) in Film and Television Studies I
was ready to dive into the deep waters of self-employment.
Ultimately it was my lifelong love affair with my sewing machine that led to my decision to set up shop and try earning a living by doing what I love.
It wasn’t long however (well 6 years) before I yearned for something more and my love of books began seeping into every aspect of my life (including many, many sewing and costume history books). I took a risk and jumped back into education to legitimise my obsession with reading and writing. So in 2017 I graduated with an MA in Creative Writing.
Then came 2018. Without going into too much detail (I talk more about it in depth on my blog) in very early 2018 I was diagnosed with Relapsing Remitting Multiple Sclerosis. Over the past two years this has changed my relationship with my own body, my writing and ultimately my sewing.
In late 2019 I made the harrowing decision to give up sewing; more specifically giving up custom orders and full costumes. My etsy shop is still open and offering a lot of historical accessories and literary inspired homewares that I had in stock before last year.
So I’m evolving, changing and adapting to my new life. Things are changing quickly and I’m trying to keep up. But I hope you stay with me on this journey as I find my feet and find new things to fall in love with.