About Me

If you can read a recipe, you can read a pattern. If you can drive a car, you can operate a sewing machine. If you can shop, you can SEW.

Sarah Gunn

On August 31, 2011 I gave up buying clothes for a year and vowed to make my clothes instead.

As a mother to two fashionable daughters, I was no stranger to shopping for clothes. From baby clothes to upscale fashions, shopping for clothes had dominated my checkbook for decades.

During my year of sewing I made 64 garments, saved thousands of dollars, and received countless compliments on my clothes from people who did not know my story. Two weeks after I concluded my year of abstaining from buying ready-to-wear clothing, Mood FabricsProject Runway’s go-to fabric store announced a sewing network of nine bloggers of which I was one.

Honored to be a part of the Mood Fabrics team, I’ve continued to work on my skills and promote sewing clothes.

On January 1, 2014 I was joined by hundreds of sewists across the globe for another year long Ready-t0-Wear Fast.  Follow  here!

On August 31, 2011 I gave up buying clothes for a year and vowed to make my clothes instead. Find out more!

  • Renee Wessel
    Posted at 03:05h, 16 January Reply

    I really love your style. I have been sewing for 50 years, but have been doing mostly alterations of consignment shop and thrift shop purchases . I have had a love hate relationship with patterns and the way they fit my 60+ body multi size body. You have inspired me to buy a bolt of muslim, trying out patterns, and get back into sewing my own garments. again.

    • Goodbye Valentino
      Posted at 13:05h, 18 January Reply

      What a lovely comment, Renee! I followed the Nike advice and just did it. Learning to fit myself has been one of the greatest things I’ve done for myself, and I hope once you start sewing again you’ll enjoy it as much as I do. :)

    • Sharon Jester
      Posted at 19:21h, 27 January Reply

      You are such an inspiration,, your clothes and style are beautiful, I’m a novice at sewing, always wanted to sew my own clothes, but became frustrated when sewing a pattern and it did not fit. Now with online classes, and bloggers such as yourself, it incourages me to keep trying and learning. Thank you so much for your knowledge and inspiration.

  • Alice Zenner
    Posted at 18:52h, 26 January Reply

    Jessica, I was wondering if you ever re-purposed or refashioned your outfits from old clothes or fabric rejects and scraps? I have been experimenting for the last two years with reusing old fabrics and making new pieces. Some were duds (LOL) and some were adorable. At least my 3 daughters were good sports. Like you, I gave up purchasing new about 18 months ago for the thrill of the find – and lots of donated treasures from friends and family. The results have been nothing short of amazing. I decided to take my sewing to a new level and am now sharing my sewing talents as an alteration business on the side. I wish I’d done this years ago! Thank you for your blog and photos, I’ve voted for you in the Craftsy Sewing Photography site…. inspiring! Alice

  • Ruqayyah (ReDpants Designs
    Posted at 03:14h, 31 January Reply

    I have seen your post on Pinterest and McCall’s pattern”s Instagram…you are AMAZING! Sophisticated and your clothes are tailored to fit beautifully! Love your site! Will be following…

  • Carol M
    Posted at 12:53h, 27 April Reply

    Please consider sharing before and after pics the next time you refashion something. I’m a committed thrift store shopper getting back into my sewing groove after a too many years away from my machine. I’m not ready to fast yet but I’m really inspired by your posts.

  • Meme
    Posted at 17:01h, 30 May Reply

    Sarah, I just completed one year of RTW Fasting, Thanks for the inspiration. While my output doesn’t come close to yours, I’m proud of my accomplishment. The astonished looks and comments I receive when I say “Thanks, I made it myself” are worth the effort. I don’t want to retire because I wouldn’t have anywhere to wear my fabulous, well-fitting clothes. I love your video and your gallery. They are “sew” inspiring.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 21:52h, 08 July Reply

      For some reason I just saw your email. Congratulations on completing your RTW FAST!! It’s a true accomplishment that warrants celebration. I hope you continue to sew ;)
      Many thanks for your comment!

  • Judith Nigh
    Posted at 12:52h, 08 July Reply

    Hello, I’m new to your site/blog and I am returning to sewing after years of ‘too little time” Your clothes are impressive and clearly made with quality fabric. As I prepare to get back to the machine…I cannot locate sources for quality fabric. I come from a line of seamstresses who used beautiful material for their projects and believe it is only worth the time if I can find this. Home is Louisville, Kentucky and sadly our best family owned fabric store closed several years ago. With RTW so available and many choosing not to sew and they simply could not sustain the business. Unfortunately, that leaves only the ‘big box’ sewing stores that are full of craft items but short on good fabric. Im sure you have addressed this in your blog and would like to know where you are getting yours. Could you comment or direct me to a post that will give direction? Thank you, HAPPY DAY! Judith Nigh

    • Carol M
      Posted at 14:11h, 08 July Reply

      Judith- consider a road trip to Nashville’s Textile Fabrics. Textile is in the process of moving but it would be worthwhile to get on their mailing list and c’mon down once the move is complete in the next month or so. And while you’re waiting to hear from Sarah, check out emmaonesock.com, moodfabrics.com and lowpricefabrics.com. Most will send swatches either for free or a nominal fee. Let me know if you wind up in Music City!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 21:50h, 08 July Reply

      Hi Judith and thank you for your nice email!
      I discovered the same disappointing issue as you when I returned to sewing four years ago. The good news is quality fabrics are available online. It’s a different way of shopping and sewing but I can’t complain ;)
      Since I blog for Mood Fabrics, I buy the vast majority of my fabrics from their online store. Mood is an enormously large store with great prices on designer fabrics. Other online fabric stores exist – after Mood you may want to check out BandJ Fabrics, Emma One Sock, Marcy Tilton, NY Fashion Fabrics .
      Good luck and welcome back!!

  • Jill Morgensteibn
    Posted at 19:36h, 28 October Reply

    so glad to find your blog. You are a very classy lady who looks like a million dollars because of your good taste because your clothes fit you so well.
    Will be a faithful follower and my inspiration.

  • Carol
    Posted at 20:29h, 05 April Reply

    I came across you website because of your pattern review of you beautiful sateen dress. I am determined to make all my clothing now. A slow process as I am building my skill levels and can only sew in the evenings ! I am excited to see others are on the same quest.

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