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About Serial Bagmakers

At Serial Bagmakers we take sewing personal

I have been sewing seriously since April 2015. But what did sewing mean to me in the year(s) before that?

I had my own Toyota (sewing machine!) since 1992 but only used it for sewing a carnival dress and hemming the rare thing. My mother had a Bernina.

In July 2014 I was so fed up with the prices professional seamers and seamstresses asked me (very reasonable prices, but reasonable prices multiplied by 7 hours is a lot of money for a dress) that I ripped an old dress and drafted a pattern from that (out of the blue). Nothing that I ever did or had seen anyone doing it.

I had bought fabric at a fabric market 2 months before because I wanted to ask the local repair shop to make a dress.

In 1 night I ripped my dress (without seam ripper, because at that point I still thought a seam ripper was for making buttonholes) drafted the pattern, cut out the fabric and started sewing.

I had almost zero experience but 100% self confidence.

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The next day I went to my mom to show her what I made and her reaction was ‘wow’. I could see in her eyes how proud she was. It was far from perfect but so much better than she thought it would be.

So that raised my self confidence to 120%.

I still wear that dress although you can see a lot of mistakes, but I don’t care. I’m so proud of it.

In September 2014, I went to the hospital for hip replacement surgery. When I was better by the end of the month, my mom went to the hospital and was diagnosed with cancer.

In a local store an overlock machine was on sale and I bought it.

When my mom came out of the hospital, I visited her every day (she was in a service flat, so she had everything she needed as far as medical care, but I was there for the talks and groceries). By the end of December she passed away. Her funeral was on January 9, 2015.

In February 2015, a local sewing group was formed and I joined. The first time I unpacked my overlock and threaded it.

By the next meeting I learnt what a cutting mat was, why you need a roller cutter, what a seam ripper was used for (to rip unwanted seams).

Then I cut out a dress (from that same pattern I had drafted myself) and that is still a UFO on my dress form. It’s just a dress that does not want to made. Perhaps it’s the wrong fabric for that pattern.

Somewhere in the beginning of March Deby from So Sew Easy had formed a Facebook group So Sew Easy sewing chat and I liked it a lot. I learned a lot!

In March 2015 I had trouble with my Toyota and I brought it to the Sewing machine hospital (that is the actual name of that store).

It took 3 weeks to repair my machine (I had not asked for expedited service, because, I had no idea it would take that long). I looked at new machines (there still was a chance they could not fix my machine) and was shocked by the prices. 300 euro and over… wow.. a basic decent machine would be 600 euro.

In the meantime I followed a course to learn to use my overlock machine. That class was very helpful. While it took me 3 hours threading my machine the first time, the second time it took me only 10 minutes. I learnt a lot with the help of the teacher. I learn a lot by watching someone do it. Thank you YouTube.

By the beginning of April I was full of ideas of what to make and in Deby’s Facebook group the Bionic gear bag was mentioned (together with the Sew Much Nicer community. Little did I know how difficult that bag was. So I ordered online the materials I needed to make that bag. (I ordered on Aliexpress so it would take more then 35 days before my stuff would arrive).

Around Easter (April 2015) I had told myself the story that I would like to sew, but that I needed a better machine. And from 300 euro – that is expensive – I went to 999 – that is only half of the price of my bike. I bought a Pfaff expression 3,5 from a brick and mortar store that has an online shop. The machine had a temporary discount of 300 euro. So it came out to less than 1000 euro.

And since that day (the day before easter 2015) I’ve caught the bug of bag making and hardly have any days when I’m home, have spare time that I go without touching my sewing machine.