Day one July 22 2014
I'm Peggy Mead and I am so over the moon to be starting my new sewing pattern business however, I am a little behind with all of the blogging, face booking, instagramming etc so please stay with me while I get up to speed. The process of starting this business has been much more work than I anticipated. I am amazed that it has taken me seven months to get three patterns ready. I can't wait to get to work on the next batch but I'm still buttoning up some of the website details. What I'm really looking forward to is connecting with the sewing community out there and I can't wait to hear from some of you.
A little bit about my background and why I'm starting Sew House Seven……. I have been sewing every since I was about 7 years old. I do however have an earlier design memory of being in kindergarten and having my friend Anne over to play. She was also a big sewist at a young age as her mother taught pattern making, draping and design at the University of Idaho. Anne and I decided to make dresses for each other out of some bright green fabric my mom had. We laid down on the fabric and traced around each other the shapes that would become our sleeveless dresses. We then cut them out (just a front and a back) and told my mother where to sew the seams. The armholes, neck and hems were unfinished. We then cut out dog appliques and hand stitched them on (if you can imagine a 5 year old's applique of a dog). We also made matching sandals by tracing our feet on cardboard to make the soles, cutting them out and taping strips of the leftover dress fabric to them. Our mothers let us wear the outfits to school but we had to bring a change of shoes as the tape came undone from the sandals. Our mother's were our creative influences. Anne's mother was alway weaving or sewing and the trips with my mother to the fabric store where I tired of waiting for her while I got in trouble for hiding in the rounders of bolts eventually lead me to start sewing for myself at age 7. I loved the freedom that sewing gave me to make unique clothing and later in junior high, it helped stretch my measly clothing allowance farther.
In college, I almost completed course work in Nutrition/Food Sciences but then switched and finished up with a Graphics Design degree. I never felt that was my true path and so I went back to school to complete an M.S. in apparel design at Oregon State University. I received a master's as I thought I might teach. I then went on to work briefly for NIKE making bag patterns, then Jantzen as swimwear pattern maker and designer where I sometimes traveled to the Miss Teen and Miss U.S.A pageants to fit suits on the contestants. I also customized the fit of one of our best selling patterns for Princess Diana - I was so tempted to write her a note on the label but I refrained. After freelancing for several small companies and teaching draping at the Art Institute of Portland, I went on to work for Pendleton Woolen Mills designing sweaters, embroideries, prints and graphic tees among other things.
Recently, I found myself wanting to get back to the basics of what originally sparked my interest in apparel and that's sewing. Like most of you out there, I take pride in making something and it's much more fulfilling to me than just buying something off of the rack. Especially now days when everything is made in mass quantities over seas and there is little affordable in the way of organic or eco friendly clothing. Sewing allows me to feel less guilty about loving clothes. My hand made clothes are also a hobby, entertainment and a sense of pride and accomplishment. In college I had a dream of one day having my own pattern company. I've now decided to forge ahead with that dream.
My grandmother's old sturdy Singer that I just inherited. I'll use it as a back up when my Bernina is being serviced.