When I was a child I had few toys, but what I did have were two grandmothers who could sew and a teacher who also loved to sew, called Joan Gilbert. We lived in Bolton, Lancashire.
I started to make my own clothes when I was very young and by the time I was 8 years old I was wearing my own creations to school. My main inspiration and encouragement came from Joan Gilbert and she remained a friend until she passed away not all that many years ago. I did not have my own sewing machine at that time so had to visit my grandmothers whenever I wanted to use one.
As I grew older I wanted to wear the latest fashions so I bought Vogue magazine and copied the designs. Each Saturday I would go into town and purchase new fabric, this would be made up into one of my new designs and worn the following Saturday night! I was always dressed in the latest fashions.
As I grew older I managed to study Tailoring in between working and bringing up my boys and enjoyed the new challenge. I then started making my own coats and suits.
More recently I was forced into early retirement and wondered what to do with my time. About 18 months ago I hit upon the idea of starting a blog because I realised that I have a lot of knowledge about sewing and tailoring but nobody to pass it on to. A blog seemed to me to be the best way of reaching people who are interested in sewing. I never expected the blog to be so successful though! It really did come as a shock. I love the emails and tweets I get from people asking me how to do something and I love it even more when I get a photograph of a garment which somebody has made. That really does give me a huge buzz.
I am passionate about passing my knowledge on and even more passionate to reach people who want to learn to sew but think that it is going to be too difficult. When writing my blog post I try to assume that the reader has little knowledge of sewing and yet make it appeal to more experienced sewers. I do not charge for advice and I am more than happy to help where I can. I am also keen to encourage people who have a disability not to give up the things they love. I have Parkinson's and although the diagnosis is life changing it does not signify the end of a useful life, and I am keen to show that.
I have recently finished refurbishing my sewing room (AKA My son Matthews bedroom when he comes to visit) and now have a beautiful haven to sew in. Woe betide anybody who ventures in it without slippers on though, there are pins everywhere ! and if you touch my scissors I will not be responsible for my actions!
I am very excited to be sewing with White Tree Fabrics, their fabrics are to die for and they have such a great range of patterns too. That's what I love, everything under the same roof.