Mesej Bags

I am not a minimalist. Far from it. I like buying stuff and I like having stuff. 

The one thing I go minimal with is my purse. The smaller the better. I’ve never been one to keep “just in case” items in it for myself and others. If I do, I can never find what I actually need each and every time: keys, money, ID, lipstick, phone.

THIS bag is all that. It keeps me from collecting every receipt, pen, tissue and melted piece of candy. I designed it to keep the clutter minimal. As small as it may seem, you can fit the REAL necessities inside and easily see what needs to go.

Mesaj bag, $42

Mesaj bag, $42

Need a little more room? The Major Mesej has plenty. Diaper bag? This one is great for men and women to carry around even after the little one doesn’t need it. Use the Major Mesej or request a custom-feature bag that can be larger and with more pockets and other functional features.

Major Mesaj bag, $56-$72; also available as a diaper bag, $72 and up

Adjustable strap for cross-body or single-shoulder wear. Pockets and more pockets. Plenty to choose from with new ones added all the time.
Please contact me with questions or ordering options. 

Little Zipper Bags

I hear this way too often: “oh, so cute …. but what am I supposed to put in them?”
Uhhhh… whatever you want to put in them. Let’s see….

  • Cosmetics 
  • Cash and gift cards
  • Random pens you’ll lose anyway
  • Phone
  • Dog treats
  • Cat photos
  • Lipstick, keys, ID (the holy trinity)
  • Anything you need to put in a zippered bag that fits into this

Contact me if you want to purchase one or more. No two are alike, interior fabrics are different from one bag to the next and selection always changes. 

Little zipper bags, blue floral collection

Little zipper bags, new barkcloth collection

Little zipper bags, air mail collection

Coiled Rugs and Baskets and Bowls (UPDATE)

Once again, I look back to some of my favorite 70’s styles.
I remember a gorgeous hideous gold and brown coiled rug in the dining room. Each table leg eventually found its way between the cords, defeating the purpose of protecting the hardwood floor. The chairs always got caught, too, eventually pulling apart the coils near the edge, never to be repaired because it weighed too much to pick up and mend. I’m sure my bored and curious self tempted the tears further when I regularly camped out under the dining table with the family dog.

When I’m faced with my collection of lovely fabrics that haven’t yet found their purpose, something like this inevitably happens. No, its not my original idea or technique, yet each one is unique in it’s creation.

Here you will find my current inventory of coiled designs (as of September 5, 2017.) Unless otherwise noted, it’s all available for purchase. Please contact me for information on where and how to purchase, pricing, shipping charges and custom orders. Not shown (yet) are baskets with handles, similar to the medium bowl, but versitile as a basket or a tote bag. 

Coiled rugs: 24″; get them now before they become my parents’ Christmas gifts; other sizes, shapes and colors available

Small coiled bowls: 6″ diameter; many colors, shapes and sizes available


Medium bowl; 7″ high, 10″ diameter

My Favorite Sewing Book: Knits

The Colette Guide to Sewing Knits Professional Techniques for Beautiful Everyday Garments

by Alyson Clair

How many books about sewing basics have you owned? How many do you refer to regularly? How many have you given to your niece or aspiring sewist because you have too many that are all the same? Probably lots, if you’re like me. This is the one I refer to most. Maybe it’s because I enjoy sewing knits and want to perfect my skills; maybe because it is so straightforward with quick details and instructions. The information in this one is more useful for me than any other. I’ve not once found myself confused because of wording. It’s all written so it makes sense to me right away. 

If I’ve taken a break from sewing knits, I go back to this and skim some basic techniques and reminders, most often for finishing armholes and necklines and hemlines. Those details can make or break a nice garment. 

I don’t have a serger (yet!) so I’m so grateful that Ms Clair clearly explains how to work without one and that it’s nothing to be ashamed of (but I still really, really, really want one!) I even read the chapter about sergers and cover stitch machines, neither of which I have, and I understood everything. 


The photographs are well-done and easy to follow. Using contrasting fabrics for clarity of demonstration is something many authors overlook. I saw one try to explain applying red bias tape to red fabric with red thread …. I learned nothing. 


I’m not good at adjusting patterns to fit other than a lot of trial and error. Back to this book to remind me how with the basics. I can get more detail elsewhere, but if you already know how, these are good highlights. 

Skim the “Chapter Review” sections when you just want to get in a sewing frame of mind. 

Finally, the charts and quick-read sections are great for those of us with a short attention span.

Once you’ve marked all the sections you know you will go back to, swing over to Collete Patterns to explore their cute patterns and finished items. I haven’t bought any patterns myself, but have found plenty of inspiration there. 

Share with me your favorite book of basics. I have some favorite pattern books to share, but there are a few so I want to categorize. 

Art Walk, April 2017

This was a fun sale. Aside from freezing after the sun went down, we met so many people who were excited about our work. 

My latest long skirts are:

Long, full skirts, spring 2017; try NOT swinging and swaying as you glide along in one of these

My absolutely favorite dress right now is waiting for the right owner. Everyone loves it, but women are intimidated by it, if you can believe it! Afraid it’s too form-fitting, too fancy, too attention-getting. 

And the problem with all that is???

Red/black lace dress, spring 2017; you’d be surprised how good this looks on a variety of shapes and sizes, just be ready for compliments

Red/black lace dress, top/front detail,spring 2017

Red/black lace dress, sleeve detail, spring 2017; now THAT’S a sleeve!

I really need to replenish my handbag selection. I’ve got a lot of nice new fabrics all set to go, just need to sit and sew. The latest ones are:

Mesej Bags, spring 2017

Really trying to make as much of a mini-collection as possible. I can’t say the bags actually go with the clothes (a bit too casual,) but the colors I’m working with all belong together. The actual mini-collection will happen sooner or later …. one can dream!

My son, sixteen years old, works his own table at these events. He got a little discouraged at first, but then he realized it’s all about getting feedback, gaining exposure meeting new people who want to help his business. 

Here’s a glimpse at his work:

Semper, spring 2017; the Artist … my favorite artist, as a matter of fact

Still working on display techniques (creative and cheap suggestions are welcome!) He hates when I show his handsome face in pictures. He goes by the artist name Semper and you can see more of his work at SempOne.com.

Later this week: a trip to my favorite fabric store! I don’t NEED fabric, but I HAVE to buy it. You know what I mean. 

You, Too, Can Go Sleeveless!

If you can’t tell after that last post, I kinda dig styles of the 1970’s. Love the wide sleeves and bell bottoms, swoon over platform shoes and adore a properly crafted wide lapel.

I also love a good sleeveless dress. Many women don’t.

Processed with Moldiv

Sleeveless, high neck, lightweight stretch fabric in bold black and white mod print

At a sale one day, a woman really liked one dress I made but said, “You know, when you get to your forties, you can’t wear sleeveless anymore.” First of all, I was 44 at the time and by no means we’re my arms anything to be proud of;┬ásecond, I wear sleeveless of some form more days than I don’t (weather permitting or not); third, I saw no reason she should hide from comfort as her arms looked just fine to me.

Later, I’ll talk about comfort vs. style vs. self-image. For now, I’ll just say that a clothing item isn’t just about one body part. I’d never want a client to be uncomfortable, but I want them to discover how they can feel good about their clothes and themselves

Processed with Moldiv

Sleeveless, high neck, very lightweight sweater knit

.

That said, here are some of my favorite sleeveless dresses. They have a high neck — yes, I know what you are thinking — but it’s not constricting nor uncomfortable. If, like me, you aren’t really tall (I’m 5′-4″ …. almost), they have a bit of a lengthening effect.

Give sleeveless a try. Summer is coming and I hate being hot.

Processed with Moldiv

Sleeveless, high neck, heavy knit black and white lattice print, slits on each side

 

Bell Sleeve Dresses

These are three bell sleeve dresses I designed and made in a polyester stretch fabric. They are SO comfortable and flattering on many shapes and sizes. Personally I love this style in a dress or a blouse.

Processed with Moldiv

Pink and orange bell sleeve dress

Processed with Moldiv

Bright stripes bell sleeve dress

Processed with Moldiv

Blue bell sleeve dress