Saturday, December 5, 2009

Getting Ready for My Open House

I'm sewing more products to get ready for my first open house to launch my business! The best selling items are my hand towels and potholders. I've received wonderful feedback on my handmade items. I think being able to see the items in person will help sales.

Getting New Fabric Soon

My friend Debbie is in Hawaii buying more fabric for me. I emailed her images of fabric that I want and she shops for me while visiting her in-laws. What a great friend! I can't wait to create more things with the new fabric designs.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Gift Card Holders

Even though these gift card holders are not sewing projects, these are handmade by me. These gift card holders can be customized for any event, including holidays, weddings, baby showers, birthdays, and even red egg and ginger parties! I upcycled a red egg and ginger party invitation into a gift card holder. The recipients were amazed (and not offended) that I cut up their baby's invitation and created a gift card holder which contained a Target gift card. The ideas are limitless.



Here's another one that I made for a friend.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Asian Fabric Tote Bag

This is my latest creation, an Asian tote bag. It was made from a pattern from ithinksew. This tote bag is very roomy and would be perfect for the beach, school, grocery shopping, or as a diaper bag. I'll be sewing another one and more of my products to show at my friend's home party.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

My Sewing Center

Earlier this year, I bought a sewing table that I found online. It was one of those assemble yourself deals. There were a lot of parts, but since I have a lot of experience with assemble yourself furniture, I put it together in a few hours. This table is perfect to hold both my sewing machine and serger at the same time. The sides are able to fold down and store away, but I have it permanently set up in a spare bedroom that gives lots of natural light.

My sewing machine is a Janome Sewist 509. I bought it about 3 years ago when I finally got fed up with my Montgomery Wards brand sewing machine since I had since 1984. My old machine never worked well and started skipping stitches early on. Even after getting it serviced, it would work fine for a little while, but the problem came back. Since getting my Janome, sewing has become a fun experience again. It is a very basic machine with just 7 stitches. Now, I wish I had bought a higher end model with more stitches! But for under $200, it works great and is reliable, which is the most important thing.

A year later, I bought a serger. I had never used a serger before but always wanted one because of the professional looking seams you can get with the serger. My serger is a Janome MyLock 644D. It came with a how-to video. Having to learn how to thread 4 needles instead of just 1 was intimidating at first. It took me a while to figure out how to adjust the tension and cutting width of the blade to get my stitches just right. But now, I feel much more comfortable with it and enjoy using it.

Friday, October 23, 2009

My First Sales

Whoo hoo! I got my first sales this week! Thank you Tina and Christine.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Rainy Weather in California

Tuesday brought some gnarly, but much needed rain in our state. Although the kids were bummed that their school field trips were canceled, it was nice to spend time indoors with a rented video and hot chocolate, and not to mention a great opportunity to sew some more things for the shop!

I'll be working on breast cancer awareness coffee cozies and a tote bag using some beautiful Japanese print fabrics that I bought from my local quilt shop.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Grand Opening!

My online etsy store is finally open for business! I spent most of my day today uploading pictures and posting my for sale items on etsy. Wow, it is quite time consuming, but it went faster as I got more familiar with the process.

My etsy store is the end result of many months of planning. I've been buying fabric from Hawaii and my local stores all year in anticipation of opening my online shop. I've done a lot of sewing, including sewing for my kids and gifts for their teachers. The response has been very positive and with that encouragement, I got the idea to start selling my handmade items.

My idea to open a Hawaiian and Asian specialty shop came from my interest and love of Hawaii and my natural affinity to Asian designs because of my heritage. Although the focus of my items will be Hawaiian and Asian themed, I don't plan on limiting myself to just those fabrics as there are so many beautiful fabrics out there. Recently, I discovered designer fabrics from Amy Butler, Patty Young, Alexander Henry, and Michael Miller so some of my offerings may use those fabrics. But I have a huge stash of my Hawaiian and Asian fabrics to go through first!

I also created a Facebook Fan Page called Sweet Jasmine Designs so people can get updated on new postings on my etsy store.

My future plans for this blog include showing my sewing studio, a.k.a. the guest bedroom with the sewing table in it,  and sharing some of my interests and other hobbies.