About this Site

Hi, my name is Cathy and this is a personal blog I keep about my sewing, sewing related news and whatever strikes me.

This site began in the summer of 2007, during a time when I had this notion in my head that fashion sewing was dead.  In fact, I had probably only sewn just a handful of garments over the course of a decade!  I missed it and I was on this quest to find out if it was true…was fashion sewing dead?

(Update: To my great relief, and through much discovery, fashion sewing was not dead! )

The internet opened up a world in sewing I had not known before, or had even participated in.  There was patternreview.com  and Burda Style and Threads Magazine and Blogs!  Oh the Blogs!!!  I could just read and read and read!  Wow!  People were doing some really great things!

So as a means to discover this whole world of sewing again, a world that had literally been my life at one time, I started writing about it and that’s where the name of this blog came from,  Sewing For Life

…and when you stitch  the words together… Sewingforlife!.

Welcome to my little blog.

Today I write about many different subjects, some include cooking/baking, dog raising, weight loss, home DIY, owning my own business or self sufficiency.  I am interested in many social issues that affect our time on this planet – poverty, homelessness, over taxation, nature, our waters.

I enjoy a good photograph and painting and try to do my best to learn those crafts.

I just recently began playing the piano after a 35 year hiatus from lessons.

I have a soft spot for a historical drama…

Feel free to chime in on a comment line anywhere on the site, I read it all.


22 thoughts on “About this Site”

  1. I love your web site. So glad to have found it. I laughed when I read your decision to sew, instead of buy, all new additions to your wardrobe for a year because I had recently made the same decision for myself for the very same reasons. Perhaps sewing is seeing a revival the way knitting has. I hope so. Thanks for sharing your knowledge and interest.


  2. Hi!
    I just found your blog. Sewing is not dead. I teach it in a public high school in NC. My background is in theatre and after teaching theatre for 12 years and working in the costume shops of Appalachian State, Utah Shakes and Santa Fe Opera, I am here teaching sewing (Apparel) every day and I love it more than my previous life as a drama teacher.
    I find your blog honest, informative and not all junked up!
    As a goal, I would like to begin a blog and follow my sewing more diligently. I look forward to reading more of your blog!
    I just have one main question – what is your favorite machine?
    I want to buy a new one soon. I am currently using a Bernina 830 that is older than me. I love mechanical machines. However, the school where I teach has an awesome Viking that does everything except wipe my nose. But, I am having such a difficult time getting accustomed to it. I have been going to a local sewing shop and the 80 year old owner told me to buck up and get with it!!!!! She told me to let go of the mechanical machine and get a computerized. So—what would be a compromise? Should I buck up and keep Bernie around as a security blanket????
    What is now the popular standard? I would love to be able to do a little of everything, small embroidery projects (lettering & small images from my husband’s artwork), quilting and sewing on almost every fabric possible (mostly wools and cotton). I want a great button hole, drop in bobbin, automatic thread clipping, bobbin winding without unthreading the whole machine and well, the ability to figure out my machine with out going to the sewing shop every time I break a needle. Oh, I don’t want to pay 9,000 bucks for it either like the new Bernina 830. If I have to use a computer to do some of the embroidery, I want to use my mac – not a PC.
    Amy S


    1. Hi Amy,
      Thanks for the comment. You asked a lot of questions so I’ll try to give you my thoughts.
      Start a blog, it can be fun, and open up a whole new side of yourself that you may never have known. Don’t over think it. Just create one and give it a try. There is a book out called Blogging for Bliss. If you can locate it it will serve as inspiration but I would just recommend just doing it. I’m still figuring it out but since I just do it for me and it’s not my income it is a lot of fun.
      Hmmm. Favorite machine. Well my machine of course!
      Actually I have several but the one I use most often is a Bernina Artista 170. At the time I bought it in 2000 I was in the middle of sewing a wedding dress for a friend of mine and I was using my Bernina Sport to do the job. I was very fortunate at the time because I inherited a little bit of money and was able to purchase not only the machine but embroidery software, a laptop and lots of accessories. I love it. But it was expensive so there is a trade off!
      I have a very close friend of mine that I taught how to sew. She is a High School Spanish teacher and because of her sewing ability and theater background is now the costume director. She was able to get the school to purchase a pretty amazing machine for her use (er…department use). With you being the school sewing teacher you will definitely have resources available to you. I would go with what is comfortable to you. Test drive a lot of machines and listen to your gut, not the 80 year old or the sales person, YOU! You are the one that will be using your machine…for a long time! (hopefully!).
      As far as mechanical vs computerized, I have both. My computerized machine has failed me a couple times after I first bought it. Bernina replaced a few parts under warranty and it’s been smooth sailing for 9 years. I haven’t had one issue since, so having dealt with their service department I have no complaints there. I would think that would be an important factor to consider now a days since most of the machines are electronic.
      As for price and wanting all the bells and whistle I would follow the same advice that photographers get. Buy the best you can afford. I’ll add to the advice with ‘in cash’. Oh, and totally keep Bernie around.
      Make yourself a spreadsheet and list out the BIG important features you want and then figure out how much you will spend and then start running through the product lines by the big manufacturers. I’m a Bernina snob but would consider another brand if it all looked good and was quality. Heck. I sew on a 1947 Singer 201 every now and then so just because something is old doesn’t necessarily mean it isn’t still good for something. So with that in mind you might look at some older models…say 4-5 years old that have the embroidery features. As far as your computer, that would depend on what software you buy and the connection to the machine. I’m sure there is a product out there Mac compatible.

      Best of luck to you!


  3. Cathy,
    I’m a machine embroiderer and can relate to your Polo Shirt blog. I became commissioned to do t-shirts for a local RV Resort.
    I’ve been doing this for 4 years, now, and 90% of my work has traveled from my home to others for FREE, but times are a changing…I’ve just made my first commission check!!

    You are hilarious!!! I have bookmarked this site, as I love a good laugh and I can soooo relate to your stories.


  4. I literally just stumbled on your site! It’s great! I was searching for a great pattern for trouser pants– and your blog popped up! yay, for learning how to pattern draft! I am, though, a new sewer so it seems a little beyond me…. Maybe?! But, I was wondering what you might call the style of pants that appear on the model on the cover of Natsuno Hiraiwa’s book “Shape Shape”? I thought trouser-chinos? But basically I order this book fom Amazon, based on these pants and unfortunately — there is no pattern or the pants. So, any ideas?

    Thanks so much and thanks for some great info on your blog!


    1. Hi Tammy,
      I had to google that Shape Shape to see what you were talking about. I’m sorry I wasn’t familiar with that one. The trousers look like they are low waisted, flat front and wide legged. They look really fun and way comfy! I’ll bet you could find a Burda or one of the Big pattern companies might have a pattern similiar in style. How fun if you were to make some trousers! Good luck in your sewing. I wonder if you could return that book to Amazon and get something else on pants?


  5. Hi Cathy – I read of blog of yours where you were planning to make sofa slipcovers using Butterick pattern 3877. Did you manage to work the pattern out? I’ve been sewing for years, but I’m unable to make sense of this pattern. I would really appreciate some help if you have the time. Patty


  6. Hi Cathy, thanks for your efforts. I love the old publications and that you use an older Singer (I have a 319K from 1960). I took up sewing only a year ago, and am loving it too. 🙂 Mike


  7. Hi Cathy Just found your site and am so glad you have the t-shirt rug. I’m getting ready to try it and can’t wait to see what other great projects you have to offer. I’m a retired Nana with four beautiful Granddaughters and love to sew for them and with them. I just recently purchased the mini janome for them to learn on. We have made pillows and are ready to try something else. I don’t spend time on social media like facebook etc. and hope that’s not a criteria to joining your site. lol


    1. Hi Darlene,
      This site is a personal blog about my sewing adventures and other things happening so it is not a ‘joiner’ type website. I have at the top a place to sign up if you want to receive notice when I post but like many you can use a blog reader too or just put me in your favorite links on your computer and check in every so often to see what I’m doing. Lately I’ve been working on my house projects, quilting and designing clothes. I’m so glad to hear you are teaching your young grandchildren to sew! how lovely!!


  8. Hi Cathy, thanks so much for following my blog, otherwise I may not have found you! Coincidentally, I’ve been saving up shirts to make a round braided rug for our geodesic dome floor, which is cold and has no insulation. I’ve seen various patterns and methods, but yours looks much more finished and pro. Looking forward to getting started and using your tutorial. Thanks!


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