Welcome back, Shannon! We’re excited to hear about your other passion – outside of writing, of course!
When I was a kid, my mom sewed most of her clothes and mine. They were simple patterns and I loved my clothes. This was before everything had to be in style and name brands weren’t a thing. One year, I got patterns for Barbie clothes for Christmas. There was a pattern for a skirt, dress, top, and pants. I made simple sew by hand clothing for Barbie and Ken out of my mom’s scraps.
I made this shirt for my Mod-Hair Ken. Isn’t he groovy. Yes, I still have my Barbies. They were my favorite toy, so I saved them. I only have a son, but maybe I’ll have a granddaughter someday. She can make fun of Ken’s hair, which looked much better back in his day.
In my tweens, I bought precut quilt squares. My mom taught me how to use the sewing machine, but it intimidated me. I remember being afraid I’d sew my fingers, so I ended up sewing the squares together by hand and my grandmother quilted it for me. I still have and used it for years, but some of the squares need restitched, so I put it away. She’s been gone seventeen years now, so I love it even more. One of these days, I’ll repair it.
In high school, my best friend sewed her own clothes. Really, cute, trendy stuff. When I said I wanted to learn, we went to the store for me to pick out my pattern and fabric. I hated every second of it. Though I managed to use the machine and not sew my fingers, I tore out more stitches than I kept. Every little pucker of getting off the line mattered when it came to clothing. I ended up with a cute top, but I wore it only a few times because it reminded me of the frustration of making it.
Early in my marriage, my grandmother cleaned out her fabric stash and gave it to me. I found really simple easy sew dress, tank top, and short patterns and made some clothes. There really wasn’t anything fashionable about them, but the right fabric made them cute.
And then I saw some beautiful curtain toppers at J.C. Penney for way more than I wanted to pay for them since I’m painfully frugal. The next time I went shopping, I looked through a pattern book and found the curtain toppers. I bought the fabric of my choice and made them for a fraction of the cost.
During the process I learned that with curtain toppers, if you make a pucker or sew a bit crooked, it doesn’t matter. I’d found my sewing love. At one point, I made heavy moire drapes with fancy valances for our living room. But now I have simple toppers with blinds.
Over the years, I expanded to sewing comforters. It matters if you make a pucker more, but I buy fabric with straight lines in the print or square panels and all I have to do is sew along the lines. I sewed every comforter our son had from the time he was born until he was about fourteen. He had Noah’s Ark, Bob the Builder, Spiderman, Camouflage, and Big Buck comforters.
When he was fourteen, he crushed my soul and asked if he could have a store-bought comforter like all his friends. I still have all the ones I made him in a tub for future grandchildren though. There’s no hurry since he’s only nineteen now. But I do have fabric I’ve bought with future grandchildren in mind.
I also sew items for friends and family. When anyone has a baby, they get a comforter and curtain toppers to compliment their nursery. My cousin just became a grandmother. Her daughter did the nursery in a national parks theme since she and her husband love to hike. I made a twin size quilt, so they’re new baby boy will be able to use it past infancy.
Even though minimalist décor is all the rage now and most people just have blinds or shades on their windows these days, I still have curtain toppers. And I made them all. My office has pastel, seashell toppers. I bought this fabric fifteen years before I had a use for it. My family room is decorated cabin rustic, so I have burlap with woodland animal trim in there.
My new laundry room has my favorite toppers. There are pictures of wicker furniture, wood rocking chairs, glass tea pitchers, and geraniums. They say, Sweet Tea Sippin, Screen Porch Views, Front Porch Sittin, Neighborhood News. My kitchen curtains blend with the family room since it’s all open. They’re burlap with coffee label trim since my kitchen is all about coffee.
I currently have a fabric stash way bigger than my grandmother did. Since we just converted our tiny spare bedroom/junk room into a laundry room, I’ll soon have a sewing nook in there. No more dragging my sewing machine and supplies to the kitchen table. As soon as the sewing table I ordered arrives, my machine will be at the ready whenever I want. Oh the curtain toppers and comforters I shall make.
Question: Do you sew? If so, clothes, home décor, or both? If not, what’s your craft love?
We’re part of Shannon’s Blog Tour for A TEXAS BOND. Leave a comment to be entered in her Grand Draw. She’ll be doing the draw March 10, 2021 and winners will be notified by email.
Here’s the beautiful cover and back cover blurb for A TEXAS BOND:
A Texas Bond by Shannon Taylor Vannatter
(Book 3: Texas Hill Country series)
Finding his family is only the beginning…
He came to find the children…
Will he stay to win her heart?
Learning he’s an uncle shocks Ross Lyles—but after years of handling his brother’s bombshells, at least this surprise is a blessing. A pair of five-year-old blessings Ross is determined to meet, if he can convince their aunt to give him a chance. Fiercely protective, Stacia Keyes is worried he’ll try to take the children…and lassoing her trust is harder than he ever imagined.
Available at Walmart from mid-Feb to mid-March. Or online:
Award winning author, Shannon Taylor Vannatter writes contemporary Christian cowboy romance and has over a dozen published titles. A romance reader since her teens, she hopes to entertain Christian women and plant seeds in the non-believer’s heart as she demonstrates that love doesn’t conquer all—Jesus does.
She gleans fodder for her fiction in rural Arkansas where she spent her teenage summers working the concession stand with her rodeo announcing dad and married a Texan who morphed into a pastor. In her spare time, she loves hanging out with her husband and son, flea marketing, and doing craft projects.
Connect with her: Shannon’s Website, Shannon’s Blog, Shannon’s Facebook, Shannon’s Goodreads, Shannon’s Pinterest, Shannon’s Twitter, Newsletter Archives, Shannon’s Amazon Author Page and Shannon’s Bookbub. Sign up for her Newsletter to get a free e-book, recipes, behind the scenes info, & enter exclusive giveaways: Shannon’s Newsletter
Recently, Shannon joined Scrivenings Press as co-owner/acquisitions/content editor.