On today’s episode of the Craft Industry Alliance podcast, we’re talking about building a new sewing blog and business with my guest, Sarah Kirsten Anderson of the blog and sewing pattern company SARAH KIRSTEN.
Sarah is a sewing educator, sewing pattern designer, photographer, and a believer in the magic of making your own clothes. She’s passionate about making sewing and simple pattern drafting accessible to beginners, because she believes sewing is one of the most powerful ways to love your body, show your beauty, and express who you.
Sarah’s tagline is “For creatives who enjoy the process of making,” and we start the conversation by discussing what she means by this. Next, we talk about Sarah’s life growing up the youngest in a big family and going on to study agronomy and soil science in college and graduate school. Sarah explains why she pivoted her career to becoming an entrepreneur and sewing pattern designer.
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Sometimes it feels like sewing is way too complicated. Like, do we really need multiple kinds of scissors to sew? Do we need special rulers and chalk and pins and pens? Sometimes those things help, but are they necessary to sew beautiful things well? No… Sewing is accessible before you have any of those things! . I still use chalkboard chalk to mark out patterns on fabric. I still use a normal ink pen to mark out some patterns! . If you are new to sewing, don’t feel intimidated by all the tools and equipment you see in the sewing section. You don’t need to invest in those things to be great at making your own clothes. You can start right now with what you have. You can use those old scissors in your kitchen, the safety pins and ruler in your desk drawer. Sewing is skill you develop, not a set of equipment you buy. . Wearing self drafted summer romper and my #clematistote 🌼 . What were the first sewing tools you invested in?
Sarah started her business with an Instagram account and she talks about tweaking her approach over time until she figured out how to use the platform to her advantage. Next, she started a blog and a newsletter at the same time. Sarah has a really smart newsletter strategy and her blog has a very clean, minimalist design. I ask her about her strategy for both and her answers are really enlightening.
Since launching her business Sarah has released several limited edition sewing notions including handmade wooden point turners and vintage mother-of-pearl buttons. We talk about how she determines which products to release and then how she builds up to these launches to make them a success (they sell out very quickly). We also talk about her most recent sewing pattern, the Raspberry Rucksack, and how she organized its promotion and release.
And, of course, I ask Sarah to recommend great stuff she’s enjoying right now. Sarah recommends:
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