Seamstress Tag

Hey there! So I’ve seen the Seamstress Tag going around the interwebs for some time now (started by Hollie Dolly) and I thought a brand new blog might be a great time to jump in!


1) Who are you?

I’m Kendra, a sewist living in the Bay Area, California. By day I’m a school psychologist (I do neuropsych testing, IEPs, and am generally the person who gets called when that one kid is doing that one thing that drives everyone nuts).

2) When & why did you start sewing?

Both my grandmother’s sewed, but I never really learned from them. I knew how to thread a machine when I was a kid, but it wasn’t until my boyfriend bought me my first sewing machine a little over three years ago that I fell into the habit. I hadn’t even known I’d wanted a sewing machine! Since then, I’ve taught myself with the help of the Internet and my grandmother’s old sewing textbooks (she was a fashion design major at Carnegie Melon in the 40s).

3) What is your favourite or proudest make?

It always seems like my latest make is my proudest! I keep learning and growing as a sewist, so each new make I’m usually trying something new. That said, the one that currently stands out is my first Sewaholic Granville shirt, which was the most complicated thing I’d made at that point, and it fit SO WELL.

4) What is your most disastrous make?

Oh man, I’ve had a string of losses recently. One that sticks out is a dress I was pattern testing that had a sort of elasticated waist and a boxy shape (i.e. not my style at all). I decided to use this pretty coral cotton gauze, which was so absurdly shifty and hard to sew. I had to self line everything, and I was even kind of enjoying it, until I tried it on. And oh my god, I cannot even explain how bad it looked on me. It was the least flattering thing I’d probably ever put on my body. Somehow it looked like a weird 80s throwback, but not the cute, retro kind. It looked like the kind of thing that makes you go “Oh dear, the 80s…”

5) Where is your favourite place to go fabric shopping?

I love the Fabric Outlet in the mission and its online store Califabrics and do most of my fabric shopping there. But I also love a number of other online places like Mood, the Fabric Store, and Stylemaker Fabrics.

6) What is your most used pattern?

Either the Hollyburn skirt or the Agnes tee. Or maybe the Rumi tank.

Stash busting Rumi tanks!

I’m big on sewing repeats of patterns. Once I find something that fits and suits my style, I stick with it!

7) Your most dreaded sewing task is…

Unpicking lightning zig zag stitches. I don’t have to do much of that anymore since I got my coverstitch though, thank goodness. I’d say cutting out and interfacing little fiddley bits of fabric is probably my least favorite after that. I just want to get sewing already! Or gathering. I hate gathering.

8) And your favourite sewing task?

Anything on my serger or cover stitch. It’s so fast and satisfying!

9) What is your favourite ‘sewing entertainment’?

Pandora – I’ve been listening to a lot of The Weepies station while I sew recently. It’s just the right blend of relaxing and fun to sing along to.

Audiobooks – I’ve got an enormous list of favorites (and even a favorite narrator!) if you’re ever looking for recommendations.

Podcasts – cannot get enough of Young House Love Has a Podcast (even though I don’t own a house, or really care about decorating!) or the TED radio hour.

10) Printed or PDF?

PDF just because of the instant gratification and speed.

11) What sewing machine do you use?

I have a Janome 3160 QDC, a Brother 1034 D 4 thread serger, and I recently picked up a Janome CoverPro 900 and am in love!

12) Do you have any other hobbies?

I am the lead singer in an acoustic band. We play covers of everything from Jay-Z to 80s pop songs to blues. It’s pretty fun. I started singing in choirs when I was 4 and went to college for opera performance for a bit, before realizing I don’t actually have any desire to be a professional musician. So now I just play with some of my favorite dudes for fun. You can see some of our stuff here.

I also work at a ropes course for fun. We do team building and personal growth in an outdoor and often adrenaline inducing environment. Basically, my job is to keep people safe and pushing their comfort zones whilst 60ft up a redwood tree. But really I do it for the zip line ?

Hard to show the height in a photo, but this is about 5 stories up

Thanks for stopping by!




2 Replies to “Seamstress Tag”

  1. That’s amazing that you sing in a band, work at a school and another part time job at the zip line! When do you have time to sew? lol

    1. I seem to find a lot of time, actually! I think it helps that I don’t have kids, so no tiny humans needing all my time. I usually do all my cutting and hand sewing in the evening, while my boyfriend and I are watching a movie or something. Then when I have time to sew, I can get right down to it.

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