Every other week, we profile one of our customers to find out a little bit about their sewing life. This week the MD Sewist Spotlight is on April Alden, who is one of the wonderful employees down at Bolt Fabric Boutique. Check out her Etsy shop, where she sells awesome items made from recycled and reclaimed lawn furniture webbing.
How long have you been sewing?
I was in the third grade and had to do an oral presentation with visual aids in front of the whole class. Learn something new and then teach it to the rest of the class, that was the assignment. I asked mom if she would show me how to sew. I learned how to thread a needle and the magic knot trick. I made a very small hand sewn heart shaped pillow that day.
For Christmas that year a Hello Kitty sewing machine was under the tree. In high school my art teacher saved an old machine from the decommissioned home economics era. I made a spot in the corner of the classroom for this machine. I had at least two art classes a day several years in a row, I was on the machine constantly. I started cutting up old clothes and experimenting with fabric. I was clueless and had a great time with my ignorant bliss. These are from a soft book that I made back then.
Tell us about a favorite recent sewing project.
I just finished a quilt that I quilted on the long arm at MD. It was for practice, not a biggie, just wanted to get my feet wet with that process. The long arm was so much fun! I am looking forward to driving that machine again soon.
What is your favorite sewing tip/tool?
Using very few pins, marking centers by folding, a lot of ironing and starch. My favorite tool is my nippers, oh I love my drafting table! One of the best pieces of advice I got from a teacher that holds true to anything you make by hand “pay attention to your edges”.
Where do you sew?
My little studio space, the purple room. I am usually working on several things at once.
Sewing for my business, Rosewebs, and sewing for myself gets mixed up now and then……I tend to put projects in their own bins to help me stay organized.
Most of what is hanging on the wall in my studio are my pieces, some with sewing.
What sewing project(s) do you plan to tackle next?
I would like to make a nice dress for this summer, one that is everyday style that really fits. I really plan on tackling knits, that would be a great milestone for me. I will most likely be sewing more quilts though, that is my favorite.