Filming Sewing DVDs in Cincinnati and a Little Book Preview

I feel like the last three months, or rather the last year, have been a whirlwind of busy. It might not have seemed like it here on the blog, since I’ve definitely had to pull back online for work / life balance, but behind the scenes there has been so much going on.

As most of you know I signed with a publisher (F & W Media) last June and wrote my first sewing book. The book is now complete (though it’s been out of my hands for quite awhile) and will be sent print any day now. My book, Sew Classic Clothes for Girls: 20 Dresses, Outfits and Accessories from The Cottage Mama (Size 12 month – 10 Years) will be released October 7, 2013. And let me tell you……..I cannot wait!

My publisher, F & W Media, owns the Martha Pullen Company which has led to many new and exciting opportunities, one of which was filming two sewing DVD’s in Cincinnati last week. The DVDs will be available at the same time as my book releases. Each one will be approximately 1 hour and 20 minutes and they will be available as regular stand-alone DVDs or available to watch through Martha Pullen Television (MPTV) or downloaded from the Martha Pullen website.

The first DVD is a companion to my book, Sew Classic Clothes for Girls. In the picture above, you are getting a tiny sneak peek as to what’s in the book. All the pieces in the picture are patterns found in the book, but there are many more that aren’t shown here…….we need a little element of surprise, right? The book is 95% garments in size 12 month – 10 years and let me tell you that there is not another children’s sewing book on the market that contains this many full garment patterns for girls with so many different variations. I really wanted to give you a lot of content and patterns that you could mix and match to create many different, truly one-of-a-kind pieces. I hope you really like it!

The book companion DVD is where I walk you through step-by-step through many of the techniques shown in the book. The techniques are illustrated really beautifully within the book, but if you are a visual learner, you are going to love being able to see these techniques done right before your eyes. It’s kind of like having a private, one-on-one sewing lesson! I take you through gathering, how to make your own bias binding, how to apply bias binding, how to make your own custom piping, how to insert piping into seams, lined garment construction techniques and the list goes on and on. Let’s just say I didn’t have a hard time talking for well over an hour.

The second DVD is all about pairing pattern fabrics and trims…….my favorite! Also, I show you how to transform my Charlotte Apron Dress pattern into this darling embellished knot dress. I walk you through constructing the entire garment as well as how to apply and make your own trims, how to use bias binding and so much more.

I thought you might like to see what the set looks like from a little farther back where you can see the cameras. There were three different cameras filming and moving at all different angles.

Here you can see how the three cameras are filming different angles. Kathy McMakin from Martha Pullen Company watched these screens as I filmed to make sure all the details of the instructions were caught on film. If something was missed during filming, the crew would go back and film it again without me saying anything to have the proper footage for editing. I don’t know what I would have done with Kathy (and her side-kick Charlotte), they truly made this such a lovely, stress-free experience.

Here is a trim board where I talked about the different types of trims and how to use them.

Here is a super-cheesy picture of me with the lovely Baby Lock Ellisimo Gold Sewing and Embroidery Machine that I got to use during the show. This machine is such a dream. And I adore the folks over at Baby Lock……such a great company!

I had a truly wonderful time filming. I use to be a musical theatre major (singing, acting and dancing) and actually attended school at the College Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati, so it was strange to head back to the same city to be in front of the camera again. I finished my degree in Chicago as a finance major, but theatre, acting and stage will always have a big part of my heart.

I can’t say I wasn’t nervous to film these DVDs…….I was nervous, for sure. I wondered if I would choke under pressure or would stumble over my words? I tend to be a worrier and can get myself so worked up over things that are out of my control. So I tried to take a very relaxed approach. I had an outline for each one of my DVDs, but didn’t have a script or use the teleprompter that was provided. I simply pictured myself in the classroom teaching a sewing class and told the camera everything I wanted the students to learn. It felt natural and organic and not at all rehearsed or forced……..let’s just hope it comes across that way on screen. I haven’t seen any of the footage yet, so fingers crossed!

Martha Pullen herself flew in to film with Joan Hinds (author ‘All Dolled Up‘ and many other doll clothing books) who was filming right after me and Kari Mecca (Sewing with Whimsy) flew in the day before I left too. It was a special time to get to visit with all these women who share the same passion and love for sewing as I do. To even be considered as part of their circle was just such an honor. I found myself at dinner the night before I left taking a moment to take it all in and be truly present in the moment. I thought, wow, I want to remember this night and experience forever.

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  1. I always love the behind the scenes peek!
    Of course, I am terrible camera shy so this would be quite daunting for me (you do seem to own the center stage. Congratulations!!)
    My copy is already on pre-order and I can’t wait for October (anticipating lots of sewing fun). Thanks for the sneak peek (and info on the DVDs) 🙂

    • Thank you so much for your support, Ana Sofia! You don’t know how much I appreciate it. It means a lot coming from someone who’s sewing I absolutely adore. I cannot wait to see what you create from the book……..there are so many possibilities!!

  2. i can’t wait for both of them to be ready! how exciting on all of this is!

    • It IS exciting!! I can hardly believe it. I am trying not to take any of this for granted. I just can’t believe that 3.5 years ago this all started. Pinch me, please!! I feel incredibly lucky and blessed. Thanks so much for commenting, Christina!

  3. Congratulations!! This is all looking really good! I would love to own your book – I absolutely adore all your sewing. The details on some of these clothes are fab!

    • Thank you so much! I am really proud of the book. I think you will enjoy it. There are so many patterns and so many different ways to use them that you truly can create an entire handmade wardrobe from the book! So much fun. Great to hear from you!

  4. I am so happy for you! Congratulations!!

  5. Congratulations! I also preordered your book and can’t wait until October!!

    • Awwww, thanks SO much! I just can’t wait for it to come out because my favorite part of designing is seeing what others come up with from the patterns. It’s going to be so much fun! Thanks so much for pre-ordering 🙂

  6. I’ve got 30+ years sewing experience and like watching videos of techniqes even though by this time I pretty much know them all but was thinking, show me how you put those fabrics together! and then you said the second dvd would! Excited. I sewed one of your free patterns and it was a joy. I hope to buy some stuff in the future, maybe that book!

    • Awwwww, thanks Barbara! Yes, the patterns I sell are very different from the free ones……..tons of instructions, nicely digitized and graded pattern pieces. I hope you will give one a try someday…….I think you’d really like them. I hope to actually digitize some of my free ones eventually, if only there were more hours in the day. Thank so much for commenting. It was great to hear from you!

  7. Congratulations! It must be so exciting to see your sewing career really take off. The book and DVDs look amazing and I can’t wait until they come out. I’m really looking forward to seeing how you choose which fabrics to put together. Your creations are always so beautiful and eye catching. I never even thought about mixing and matching fabrics on projects until I came across your blog a couple of years ago. You’ve taught me to think outside the box with my sewing. 🙂

    • Sheridan, you comment just gave me chills. That last line means more to me than you will ever know. Thank you SO very much! Have a wonderful day!

  8. Congratulations! Everything looks divine and I can’t wait to add your book to my sewing library!

  9. Congratulations! I am so excited for your book – I’m adding it to my Christmas list for sure. I’ve used your Party Dress pattern a few times, and it always turns out gorgeous. I’m very interested in learning more about trims and decorations.

    • Thanks, Barb! Writing the book was such a treat and there is a big section in the book about fabric pairing and trims as well. It’s my absolute favorite part of design! Have a great day, Lindsay

  10. This is amazing Lindsay – you are such a star! And PS – your hair looks GREAT! I cannot wait to see everything that is coming your way – you are such an inspiration!

    • Thanks, Jess! I got some highlights :)…….my first time ever, but I think I really like them! Look who’s talking. You want to talk about inspiration, you are amazing. Thanks for all your support. So glad to have you as my friend.

  11. Eeep! How exciting!! Congratulations! I am counting the days until your book is released. I’m so happy that you did patterns for older girls 🙂 My daughters will be so excited 🙂

  12. Congratulations! I have always absolutely loved every one of your creations.

  13. Congratulations. I am your follower now (blog & fb) since I bought your patterns last year. If somehow this book and DVD is not available in my part of the world, I hope you don’t mind me buying them from you 🙂

  14. Congratulations! I am so thrilled for you. Your creations are absolutely amazing.

  15. Yay! So exciting for you! You look stunning by the way! Just gorgeous and so happy! I’m so excited for you and cannot wait to see the book <3

  16. The book sounds fantastic and I will look forward to getting it!

  17. It all looks amazing. I can’t wait!!! (I wonder what shipping to Australia will be)

  18. I have been following your blog for quite some time so I finally had to comment here. I must say that your work is amazing and I absolutely adore how you put fabrics and trims together. I love to do this (get creative) in my wardrobe but it never comes quite so easy in my sewing. You inspire me to look harder at my projects and to step out of my comfort zone. Your work is truly to-die-for and I can’t wait to see your book. Congratulations!

  19. Congratulations,the book sounds great and every dress looks very cool!

  20. Congratulations, Lindsay! Loved reading this post and thinking about your “round trip” to and from Cincinnati along some very different roads and paths!

  21. What a fantastic post!! I loved hearing about this special experience you had and to see the behind the scenes pictures. What fun!! I am super excited about your book and these DVD’s coming out! You totally deserve this opportunity and be part of that “inner circle”! You are a fantastic pattern designer and a equally fantastic and passionate seamstress and teacher. Also, this couldn’t have happened to a nicer person!! Congrats!

  22. I’m so excited to see these & so happy for you! You are so talented & I’m so happy for your success! You are an inspiration to us all! 🙂 Hurry up, October! 🙂

  23. I am so happy for you! I can’t wait to get your book!

  24. Congratulations! So excited for you. Keep up the good work!

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  26. Wow, Lindsay! You are a superstar! Can’t wait to buy your book and see those videos!


  1. […] out some fun project tutorials and recipes, I released my first book, released four new patterns, filmed two DVD’s and my first PBS TV show, taught at the Martha Pullen School of Art Fashion in February and July, […]