the reason I haven’t been sewing…

by Dana on April 27, 2012

is that I’ve been busy sewing.
What I mean to say is….

the reason I haven’t been sharing many sewing projects on the blog is that I’m currently working on book #2.  Yay!  And, yay.  While the first book, Fabrics A to Z, is a wonderful resource guide this book is all project-based.  I’m totally excited about it.  And I’m totally exhausted too.

Book writing is a funny thing because it takes so long for the whole process to pan out.  This book doesn’t come out till August of 2013 but now is when I need to complete the 25 projects and photograph the how-to-steps as I sew.   By June I start working on the writing part and by October all the beauty shots, writing, and everything else is officially due.  I’m working on this book as both the writer/creator and photographer, which is really cool and creatively exciting.  But it’s running me thin.

If you peek in my current brain….it’s 95% absorbed with these projects and photography.  It’s what I think about, stew over, work on when the kids are at school and Clara is sleeping, and think about more when they go to bed.  It’s hard to turn the thoughts off at night.  I’m constantly rethinking and second-guessing….only because I want the book to be the best it can be.
Do all the colors and fabrics in the book work together?
Are the photographs well lit?
Sharp enough?
Do the pattern sizes fit?
Should I make another version of that project so people have options?
Or have I created too many options for the project and people will feel overwhelmed?
And really?  Really? Am I running to Joanns one. more. time?

This is my current state of being.
Creatively saturated.

And yet, I have no sewing projects to show for it, yet.

So until to June comes around (and hopefully I’ve stayed on schedule.  My editor hopes that too) the blog may be less about the tutorials and more about the simple crafts, recipes, and of course….baby. I’m sure you won’t mind that.
So today, if you’re looking for a little sewing inspiration, I turn to Elsie Marley.

Her Kids Clothes Week Challenge is bursting with cool things.  Seriously.  I can’t believe the stuff you guys are making!  Here are 9 favorites:

And since many of you have emailed and left comments about this, just one more tidbit to share….
We made it in Family Fun Magazine!
Check out Lucy’s doily heart shirt (a variation on their adoily-able t-shirt)

I showed Lucy the page and I’m not sure she realized that her picture was in a magazine that total strangers could purchase (rather than a photo book we have at home with family photos, etc).  She thought it was pretty fun though.   What kid doesn’t like seeing photos of themselves?   And it’s been fun for me to hear from you guys about it.  Even Lucy’s little cousin in Arizona was flipping through the magazine and said, “Mom, is that Lucy?”

So thanks Family Fun magazine for making our week!

Okay, have a great weekend everyone.

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{ 48 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jessica April 27, 2012 at 3:09 pm

oh that makes me so happy to see my boy cardigan in your faves Dana! (That black gingham dress kills me too.) And congrats on book #2, that is a huge beast! I can’t wait to see it.


2 emily April 27, 2012 at 3:10 pm

oh my Dana,
what thoughts, what thoughts. It will be worth it in the long run. I do have to say I was wondering when some more tutorials were coming our way? The every day stuff is good, but your blog tutorials is the reason I started sewing. Not to bag on you at all, but I was missing some of your creativity sewing wise… I can’t wait for the book to come out to make up the difference of my missing u. Totally not being mean here, I know sometimes it can be hard to tell the difference of kindness and mean snaps on the internet.


3 Cherie April 27, 2012 at 3:13 pm

I CANNOT WAIT to see your second book. I love all your projects!! Best of luck to you, I know it will be fantastic! And congrats on making it into Family Fun Magazine! Lucy may not understand what it means to be in a magazine yet, but she will someday. And how cool is that?? Thanks for featuring my ruffle top! Have a great Friday. :)


4 amanda April 27, 2012 at 3:13 pm

Where can I pre-order the book??? Awesome news! Congrats!!!


5 Virginia Lindsay April 27, 2012 at 3:14 pm

holy crap. I feel a star struck that you chose my gingham dress for one of your favs! Love your blog and bright beautiful pictures. ALso- working on a warhol dress right now!! Congratulations on making it into the family fun magazine. Very cool- you deserve with all your hard work and wonderful talent!


6 Rachel April 27, 2012 at 3:19 pm

A newborn and a book to look after for the next six months? I think we can let you off a few missing tutorials here and there ;)
So pleased to hear about the book. I hope it is a massive success (and hope it’s published in the UK, too, so I can buy a copy).


7 Kristin April 28, 2012 at 1:20 am

Hehe, this was my thought too – I figured the lack of tutorials was because you were simply still on “maternity leave!” But wow, congrats on book #2! How very cool.


8 Kris April 27, 2012 at 3:29 pm

I am so excited that you are working on a book and doing all that work yourself!!!! i know it will be amazing! I can’t wait to see what you are doing with that orange, is that vinyl? So, more pics of your sweet baby girl, YES PLEASE!!!! :) happy weekend!


9 Susanne April 27, 2012 at 3:42 pm

I can’t wait to have your new book in my hands! Good Luck in the making of it!


10 Cynthia April 27, 2012 at 3:49 pm

Hooray for a project book! I can definitely wait for tutorials if it means a book from my “friend” Dana on my bookshelf.


11 delia April 27, 2012 at 4:04 pm

You amaze me with all that you do. You still inspire us with each post, tutorial or not. :)

That is so cool that Lucy made it into Family Fun. We’ve got that issue!


12 Ashley April 27, 2012 at 4:11 pm

So excited to hear you’re working on a second book!! I recently got your first and I love it, and all the projects you share online. I’m a new sewer and I’m learning so much from you – thank you!


13 Leigh Anne April 27, 2012 at 4:13 pm

No worries, Dana! I can’t even imagine all the work that goes into a book like that……over my head for sure! I do know all the work that 3 kids takes so my kuddos to you for doing both :) I love the simple stuff and kid-friendly projects too. I’ll stick around no matter what (well, unless you start posting about accounting & statistics…..that stuff I really dislike)…haha!


14 Caren Adams April 27, 2012 at 4:51 pm

I can’t even believe you are doing another book – just HAVING a baby is exhausting!!! Congrats, though, chickie, you can do it! :)


15 anna April 27, 2012 at 4:51 pm

and a good reason at that! I can’t wait to see this next book. I love that stage when ideas are flowing out in every direction. It’ll be amazing. When is the Dana Willard Show airing? :)


16 Patty April 27, 2012 at 5:03 pm

Don’t leave us please!!!!! : ) I love your tutorials..such a great inspiration to get my sewing machine out from the box… please please..dont stop posting tutorials for us. We are you fans # 1.


17 Katie April 27, 2012 at 5:13 pm


You so rock.


18 Suzanne April 27, 2012 at 5:53 pm

Can’t wait to see your new book!!!


19 Laura April 27, 2012 at 5:54 pm

That sounds like a pretty full schedule so I think a little ‘easy’ blogging is definitely understandable. I was so happy to see my striped jammies in your faves. Really really looking forward to getting my hands on your second book.


20 Vanessa April 27, 2012 at 6:22 pm

Congrats on the new book! That is really an awesome accomplishment. Thanks for including my dress in your post :)


21 Sam April 27, 2012 at 6:29 pm

another book! I still need to get the first one, but I will! I see some walmart fabric scrapes and Joann’s vinyl that is one sale this week! Notions wall is on sale again! Glad to know I’m not the only one who goes to joanns more often I wash the dishes.


22 Shantel April 27, 2012 at 7:02 pm

You are a busy girl! I am so excited to get your new book! If I could live in a blog it would probably be yours, its has pretty pictures and is real at the same time.


23 jenw April 27, 2012 at 7:32 pm

i have to say YAY for you writing a project based book! i love your approach and style and i have faith in you! let those thoughts turn off at night at least enough to get some sleep! i don’t know how you are doing it with new Clara, but kudos to you!


24 tiphaine April 27, 2012 at 8:08 pm

so to make it short: baby 4 is on its way !!!! …… ;-)
xxx from here !


25 Christie April 27, 2012 at 8:19 pm

Congrats on the 2nd book – I am sure it will be great! I saw the photo in Family Fun too, and thought “Wait, that’s Lucy!”


26 Aline April 27, 2012 at 9:44 pm

I’m still not convinced you’re not some sort of super hero or something! Three kids (one being a newborn), a new book to work on, sewing, photographing, life etc etc etc…. It has yet to make sense to me how you do it all so GRACEFULLY! You truly are are my hero!
Good luck!


27 Taylor April 27, 2012 at 10:44 pm

Yay congrats Dana, my mom and I just opened a little home boutique outside of Houston and it has always been my dream but I can totally understand, my creative juices are pretty much gone by the time I get around to my blog… Poor poor blog :/ haha, I figure it has to become the new normal at some point right?? Can’t wait for book #2!!


28 Steph at Modern Parents Messy Kids April 27, 2012 at 11:55 pm

Your book will undoubtably (is that a word) be amazing, I can’t wait! I know the feeling when you just can not turn off your brain at night though – so frustrating! (Have you noticed that everything seems clearer under a hot shower?) I’m in awe of you attempting this with a baby at home. Between the racing thoughts and the night feeds, the sleep deprivation must be INTENSE :(. But just think, soon you’ll have a beautiful book AND a beautiful toddler to pal around with :).


29 sangeetha April 28, 2012 at 12:36 am

Waiting for the video tutorials Dana.. :)


30 Anneliese April 28, 2012 at 1:25 am

Hang in there! I know it will be worth it.


31 My lovely life April 28, 2012 at 1:50 am

I ♥ your blog so much! You learned me sooo much.
So when that book is ready, I am gonna order it.
You are a strong lady!

Hugs from across the ocean.


32 Tiff April 28, 2012 at 7:47 am

Congratulations! That is so exciting (for you, and for us to buy!). Hopefully you are taking some time for yourself too


33 Jennifer April 28, 2012 at 8:32 am

How exciting! Good luck with the book.


34 Michelle DuPuis April 28, 2012 at 10:51 am

Can’t wait to see the new book! Sounds like it’s going to be 3-4 full time jobs all wrapped into one. Good luck!


35 Tami Brown April 28, 2012 at 11:58 am

Oh my! I just got your book last week and am loving it! I can’t believe you have a new born and are writing a new book – YOU ROCK!!!


36 Jacqueline Mukweto April 28, 2012 at 4:50 pm

How exciting!!!!! Its going to be great because Dana made it!


37 Jean April 28, 2012 at 8:31 pm

Hahaha… “creatively saturated.” Love that. Congrats on the newest big project!!!


38 Nicole April 28, 2012 at 8:48 pm

Love your first book and can’t wait to see what the second one is all about!


39 Michelle Price April 29, 2012 at 12:21 am

Can’t wait to see it! I love everything you do so I’m sure it will be on my bookshelf!


40 Sarah K. April 29, 2012 at 12:45 am

Congrats! Can’t wait to see the new book! I would have thought that you were just busy with three kids…sheesh! As if you don’t have enough on your plate already?! :)


41 Laney April 29, 2012 at 12:17 pm

Tell us more about your book! Congratulations! I can’t believe all the stuff you get done..I have just ONE baby (the same age as yours!) and get next to nothing done at the moment…


42 Jen April 29, 2012 at 3:06 pm

Wow, that’s exciting! Your amazing!! I think your blog is the first craft/sewing blog I ever started reading, and now I’m hooked!


43 celine April 29, 2012 at 9:50 pm

SO happy for you Dana! I am a true fan of yours and I officially am looking forward to August of ’13 to have a piece of you in my house and on my book shelf! : ) Have fun working on this exciting project. You always deliver great blogs and great ideas, and all by staying true to yourself! You already have the key to success in you so I sure am not worried. It’s going to Fa-Bu-Lous! : )


44 ira lee April 30, 2012 at 10:15 am

i’m sure its crazy and hard! just try to keep yourself on a schedule with your deadlines and remember to embrace the experience! soak it all in, absorb it, and take a deep breath when you get stressed. wow, that sounds like what i tell myself everyday!! lol


45 Jenny April 30, 2012 at 1:40 pm

Awesome. As in, I am in awe. How do you do it all?


46 Ahna @ Easier Than I Thought April 30, 2012 at 3:08 pm

I just LOVE your site. It is one I visit daily. I guess I’ll just have to dig back into your archives in the mean time and start making everything that’s there (that’s a lot). Thank you so much for your tutorials thus far and congratulations on your book.


47 Anshu April 30, 2012 at 3:12 pm

Dana, best of luck for your book…can’t wait to read more about it as you finish your projects.
Congratulations on getting featured in family fun…that is so cool.


48 KC May 2, 2012 at 1:18 am

I’m so excited you are writing a pattern book! I’ve so enjoyed using your shirred dress pattern that I’m very sure this book will be amazing. Your fabric book is the next one on my list of craft books. Now that my May budget has opened up I will surely be purchasing that!


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