Member since 11/28/01
Date: 4/7/10 10:32 AM
Member Since: August '02
PR Name:Ann Smith
Your Full Name: Ann Lee Smith
Your Birthday: June 10
Your Blog: StitchMe Up
How did you learn to sew:
Early on, my mother helped me when I wanted to make doll clothes. Then starting in junior high, as I had very limited funds, I began making myself clothing so I could have a bigger and more fun wardrobe. That has continued ever since. Except for the required home ec sewing classes that we had in junior high and high school, I am pretty much self-taught. In the last 10 years I've added to my learning with lots of mini-classes at festivals.
What aspect of sewing do you find most challenging:
It used to be fitting myself, but I've got a good handle on that now. I even gave up sewing for a few years when I had gained weight and no longer fit a pattern right out of the envelope. Finally I challenged myself to figure it out. Now the hardest thing for me is physically coping with tracing and cutting out as it is so hard on the back and shoulders.
Which sewing book do you refer to most often:
That must be the two fitting books I use: FFRP by Palmer & Alto and Fitting Your Figure from Threads. I have to review my techniques all the time. I own practically every sewing book published, it seems. I love to look through them, but the fitting books I really rely on.
What are your sewing goals for this year:
Sewing down the stash. I figure if I sew at a rate of 2 pieces of fabric a week, then in 6 years my stash will be gone. That is, of course, if I don't buy any more or go on trips like I constantly do. Since I'm away from the machine so often I guess I need to up the amount to 4 pieces per week when I'm at home. Eeek!
My other goal is to use as many of my pricier patterns as possible. And to maintain order in the sewing room closet.
What are you sewing right now:
Suddenly, it is warm here, so I've been putting away all the winter stash I didn't get to and turning toward linen and cotton. I have a Sewing Workshop top I have made 3 times already, cut out in a cotton print and a Burda dress, cut out in linen. And 2 pieces I bought at Puyallup that I'm following Marcy Tilton's wardrobe advice [with] and making floaty vests to layer over tees.
Pick your favorite pattern (only one please):
Egad! That is a hard one to answer. It really is the one I'm just starting at any moment. But one could say Simplicity 4095 since I've made it 4 times.
What you love most about PatternReview?:
I discovered Pattern Review almost the moment I first got a computer. So enjoying PR went side by side with discovering the Internet and all the joys of computing. Together with other sewing enthusiasts, I discovered online fabric shopping, the fun of posting a review and getting instantaneous feedback, learning from others' experiences with patterns and fabrics. Just all of it. I love it all.
Any other hobbies?
Many but lately the sewing is taking first place. I used to spend lots of time gardening, playing the piano, shopping for antiques and decorating with them, fixing up the house by wall-papering and painting, traveling anywhere, doing needlepoint, cross stitch, knitting. Now it seems sewing and the computer suck up all the time.
Your profession, where do you live etc.
I taught piano lessons and played professionally for many years. Now I'm retired and find I don't get to the piano as often but that's because of Pattern Review. LOL. I live in the central valley of California where it is very hot in the summer. I don't like this because it is hard to wear most of my wardrobe when it is 105! My other joy nowadays is visiting my two grandsons in Jackson Hole, WY. And now we are excitedly awaiting the arrival soon of a granddaughter who will live only 90 miles away.
-- Edited on 4/7/10 10:32 AM --
Member since 11/13/07
In reply to Deepika
Date: 4/7/10 11:14 AM
Congradulations Ann on being our member in focus!! I took a look at some of your reviews and your clothes are fabulous - I especially like your green coat, LOVE the colour!
New Jersey USA
Member since 6/5/09
In reply to Deepika
Date: 4/7/10 11:47 AM
Congrat's! I love what you sew and I look forward to all of your reviews!
|MelissaB in WA
Member since 3/18/04
PR Weekend Volunteer
Date: 4/7/10 11:51 AM
So fun to learn about you Ann! I wish you lived next door and my children could come learn piano from you (well me too - can you teach a grownup piano???). Congrats on the new granddaugther-on-the-way!!! :-)
"The way I see it, if you want the rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain." ~Dolly Parton
Fabric sewn in 2014 ~ 55 yards
Fabric sewn in 2013 ~ 73.5 yards
Member since 3/19/05
Date: 4/7/10 12:19 PM
Great to see you as member in focus. I am sure you know by now I love just everything you sew and would love to be able to raid your closet - only thing is - I am sure most wouldn't fit unless I lost some weight
Member since 3/18/08
Date: 4/7/10 12:28 PM
Ann is an inspiration . . . I love her style!
Member since 5/15/05
Date: 4/7/10 1:16 PM
I love your style and love reading your reviews and your blog.
You have made some gorgeous clothes.
Member since 8/22/05
Date: 4/7/10 2:34 PM
Ann, I always enjoy your pattern reviews and love your style.
Member since 10/25/04
Date: 4/7/10 4:03 PM
I enjoyed reading more about you and your life.
Vonne šOš Brisbane Australia
Laughter is timeless, imagination has no age and dreams are forever.
We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.
Member since 1/28/06
Date: 4/7/10 4:17 PM
Ann, I've followed your reviews ever since I joined PR. You know how to choose the right fabric & pattern to go together & compliment one another. Your accessories are always perfect. Congrats!
Since the mind is essentially a wet computer, our task is to figure out how we can best program it.