Meet Sewing Sunshine's November Winner Theresa from @lostmythread & her Jennifer Lauren Handmade Laneway Dress in Robert Kaufman Shetland Flannel

Theresa from @lostmythread has a great instagram page and in November she shared some photographs of her Jennifer Lauren Handmade Laneway Dress that she made using some of my Robert Kaufman Shetland Flannel.

Every month I pick someone who has shared a make on their social media using fabric from Sew Me Sunshine and used the hashtag #sewingsunshine. I love following this hashtag as I get so inspired by all of your amazing makes. The monthly winner receives a £20 e-voucher, and gets featured on Sew Me Sunshine's blog so that we can all get to know the winner a little bit more, so I will now hand over to Theresa so we can get to know her a bit more...

Quick Fire Questions:

Pins or Weights: weights

Scissors or Rotary Cutter: rotary cutter

Cut or Trace: team trace 100%!

Favourite sewing tool: tailor's clapper

Your machine: Singer 8280, Singer 14SH754 overlocker, and once Christmas arrives—a shiny new Jamome 360DC 

What do you listen to/watch when you sew: I'm always partial to a little female vocal Jazz when doing anything creative (Ella Fitzgerald, Blossom Dearie, Billie Holiday, Nina Simone)

Longer Questions:

When did you start dressmaking and why did you start?

My Mom got me handsewing buttons and hems from around the age of ten. I then spent years sneakily messing around with her sewing machine with simple alterations (adding contrasting fabric into the side seams of your jeans/corduroys to create bell bottoms was 'the thing' in the 90's, and I was all over it).

I took an 'Intro to Sewing' class in High School, at the age of 17. I wanted to learn a practical skill that couldn't be self-taught, and using a sewing machine/following a sewing pattern seemed tricky to learn without assistance. At that time, sewing was all about originality and expressing my creativity.

Who inspires you with your dressmaking?

My Mom is hands down my biggest inspiration for sewing. She made epic Halloween costumes when I was growing up, and I couldn't wait to be able to make them for myself!

Once I'd taken my 'Intro to Sewing' class, I immediately wanted to jump into ambitious projects like working with lace, making a hoop skirt, making my own prom dress with boned bodice, etc. When I asked my Mom's opinion on whether I'd be able to tackle these trickier makes, her attitude was always, "why not? Just take your time and follow the instructions." And she was absolutely right. All of those projects turned out better than I could have hoped!

Her conviction that anyone can make anything (if they just go slowly and follow the instructions) has influenced me far beyond my sewing, but it absolutely removed the concept of sewing fear from my brain.

What is your favourite fabric to work with and why?

If I have to pick one, it's cotton lawn for how soft and silky it feels in my hands, how easily it stitches up and presses, and how beautifully it moves on the finished garment. It's a fabric that works with you, not against you. It also doesn't hurt that cotton lawn is often available in gorgeous prints!

What is your all time favourite dressmaking pattern and why? 

I really love making the 'La Brea Tee' by Halfmoon Atelier. It's a relaxed tee with woven and knit options and can work for both lightweight and heavier fabrics. It also has a very inclusive size range with multiple cup size options, which means I don't need to mess around with an FBA to get a great fit. It's a really simple, quick sew with grown on sleeves, so no fiddly bits! There is also a great simplified, single page version of the instructions for more experienced sewists or for those who have made the pattern before. It's such a versatile basic and extremely satisfying to whip up.

Pick one fabric from Sew Me Sunshine and tell us what you would sew with it:

I'd absolutely love to make a short sleeved Sew Over It 'Betty Dress' with scooped neck in a crepe. 

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