Sewing and handcrafts have been a part of my life since age 7. I earned a B.S. in Home Economics from Seton Hill College (now University) in Greensburg, PA, where I focused on merchandising. Early in my career, I managed both a JoAnn fabrics and a Piece Goods Shop. After moving to Augusta, GA in 1983, as a newlywed, I was delighted to see children in beautiful hand smocked clothes. I took a class, made a nightgown for myself and continued learning. This new skill launched a sewing business when I was pregnant with my daughter. “Suit Yourself” was chosen, as I love tailoring and helping professional women find nice suits. After recognizing the South’s penchant for dances, formals were added to my business.
Once my daughter was born, the smocking creativity exploded- Meghan was the best dressed girl! We relocated to Frederick, MD where I had my twin boys, bringing a new opportunity for smocked boys’ clothes. All of the children’s heirloom clothing is saved for the next generation. I taught sewing and smocking lessons at a local fabric shop, also doing ordering and merchandising for the owners. The popularity of American Girl dolls amongst my daughters’ friends launched a new business, “Sew Special,” with a friend, concentrating on new ideas and classic baby hats. Once my children were grown, I went on to work in sales in the arts and crafts world. As online merchandisers changed the business, I refocused on my true passion of heirloom children’s clothing and launched a new business, Custom Creative LLC.
My love for smocking is a part of my work days now. I was looking for a professional organization to brainstorm with other creative people. I found ASDP and it has been the right fit. The Baltimore chapter is active and has interesting programs and meetings. I look forward to learning and growing as part of this wonderful group.