New blog for sewing and making stuff

Updated: Jun 18

Mad Hatter hat, Alice in Wonderland 5th grade musical.

Welcome to SewJoe—Jeanie Joe here. I love sharing my sewing experience with new and veteran stitchers. I've been sewing since I was nine years old. That's over 55 years!! Yayyy! Guilty of procrastinating, this is my first blog post.

As an ArtCenter College of Design sewing instructor, I constantly see enthusiasm for this art form and want to share more of it to a wider audience. Here I will show photos and chat about what I'm up to, and hope you have a little fun with it.

I welcome questions about sewing, costume design, cutting, pattern making, draping, fitting & alterations, textiles and leather, etc. Pretty much anything but quilting. Not that I don't love quilting, I just don't do much of it. I would love to connect with quilters out there to share stories or just chat.

What do I love doing most? Costumes. The finished hat in the photo was one of the Mad Hatter hats I made recently. It was done with a $1 hat from a 'dollar' store, covering it with felt, and adding a new crown. Decorating was the fun part. I made the hat pins by just gluing some beads to long pieces of florist wire, then glued them on the hat. I will be showing how to make many things on a tight budget, repurposing, hacking, etc. Bragging rights for how little $$ you spent to make something feels great.

AND, I love making bags, purses, totes, pouches and satchels! I sell mine in South Pasadena, CA at Camille de Pedrini on Mission St. and a handful here through my Etsy shop called MarthaNina. I have also made many props for NBC's Parks & Recreation. Fessing up to my ‘little-white-lie’ about not making quilts: I made “The Knope-Wyatt Unity Quiltfor NBC’s Parks n’ Rec. Take a look at the 2-minute clip. What a super fun project, crammed into 6-1/2 days!

So in the interest of keeping this first post short and sweet-- I'm off to make some fun zipper pouches and some videos showing some of the crazy stuff I like to make. Photos to follow!

Chat soon,


Maker of Stuff


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