Hello all! Nice holiday? I hope so!
I had the pleasure of having a little chat with fellow Interweave author, Meg McElwee, designer of the uber-awesome Sew Liberated line of patterns and author to the new book Sew Liberated - 20 Stylish Projects for the Modern Sewist.
I've been anticipating having her book in my possession for quite some time and as expected it doesn't disappoint. Well thought out and beautifully put together, Sew Liberated has absolutely secured a spot on my list a favorite sewing books. Meg's projects are fun, functional and simple to create and beautifully embellished with applique, embroidery and the like. This book is a must have!
I'm especially loving her projects for babies and children and I've learned that she has a second book that she's working on with focus on just that subject. I'm eagerly awaiting it's release, Meg! ^_^
Check out our chat below!
Rashida - Congratulations to you on 'Sew Liberated' being published! You did such a wonderful job with it and there are several projects from it that I've added to my to do list.
When I first saw 'I Love Patchwork' in print it was the greatest feeling ever! It was almost like seeing my children for the first time when they were born. I even shed a tear or two. What was the experience like for you when you received your copy of 'Sew Liberated'?
Meg - I totally know what you mean about the feeling of holding your book in your hands – it's so surreal! My own feelings about this book are very intertwined with my first pregnancy and birth of our son. The final edits were due just a few months after he was born, and that was, perhaps, the most difficult part of the whole process for me. I just wanted to nurse in peace, but instead I had a red pen in hand! By the time I actually held my advanced copy, I was both elated and relieved, just like at the end of a long pregnancy and labor.
Rashida - I understand you're working on your second book. So cool! Congratulations! Were there things that you did while working on the first book that you've done differently this time around? What can we expect from your second book?
Meg - Oh, definitely! I'm much more regimented about getting projects completed, written, and illustrated on a schedule. Looking back, it seems like I had all the time in the world to write the first book (pre-baby) but now? Now I am just barely squeezing it in! I don't know how you wrote your book with two little ones and a baby on the way!
The second book is tentatively titled “Growing Up Sew Liberated: Over 30 Sewing Projects for the Daily Rhythm of Childhood.” I'm so excited about it – I've actually been writing it in my head since long before I even had a book deal. The subject matter is so close to my heart, and I'm really pouring myself into it – it's not often that I get to work on a project that encompasses all of my passions – early childhood education, parenting, and sewing! You can expect a lot of sewing projects the run the gamut from comfortable clothing for babies and children of all ages to items that encourage imaginative play in older children. I'm loving writing this book, and I hope that creative mamas (and daddies!) of all types will find it inspirational. Most of the projects are simple enough that even beginning sewists should be able to tackle them with ease.
Rashida - It's been wonderful having our books launch during the holiday season, which has made this time even more busy than it already is! Did you managed to find time to do any sewing or creating for Christmas?
Meg - Don't I wish! My homemade gifts this year have been made with yarn and needles. I find knitting to be something that I'm doing more of now than ever before given the plentiful nursing sessions these past seven months. Too bad the sewing machine isn't more portable! I love hand sewing, but the truth is that all of my hand sewing and embroidering energy is going toward the second book. I keep on telling myself that next year will be different – the manuscript is due in April, and after that, my machine will be humming footloose and fancy-free!
Rashida - I'm sure this holiday must have been even more special for you since it was your wee Finn's first. Did you have anything special planned for your little guy's first taste of Christmas?
Meg - Yes, it was very special, but the planning I put into it was minimal as we had a lot of family in town and both my husband and I were busy cooking up a storm. We kept things very simple – a few wooden blocks, a few beautiful board books, and that was all. The low-key first Christmas turned out to be just what the doctor ordered, as Finn's two front teeth were coming in! We did sing that oh-so-appropriate song quite a bit over the last few days!
Rashida - Speaking of wee ones, I absolutely love the baby sling project in your book! I want to make one for our wee babe before he arrives in February, as I never used one with my other children. Did you use this design with little Finn? Any suggestions for sling newbies like me?
Meg - Oooh, I love this sling in the winter months! I do use one for Finn – it's perfect for covering up his little leggies on a chilly morning walk. It's the only baby carrier I know of that has this blanket-like feature – most are designed so that the little legs hang out, uncovered. My suggestion for baby carrying newbies is to get on YouTube and watch lots of videos on how to wear the sling before trying it. Also, make sure you have another helper with you the first time you put your baby in it. As many sling veterans can attest, the baby is more likely to respond positively to the experience if the wearer exudes confidence and bounces around a bit at first. Soon enough, babies will come to view the carrier as a secure spot. My little guy regularly falls asleep while being worn.
Thanks so much for the opportunity to chat, Rashida! Best of luck as you embark upon your crafty adventures and the birth of your next baby!
Thank you Meg for dropping in for a little visit. Warm wishes to you and your family for the new year! I look forward to seeing what other wonderful things you have in store for us in 2010 and beyond!