Celebrate National Sewing Month!

National Sewing Month logoSeptember is here! On the one hand it means a melancholy feeling because summer is coming to an end and we’re heading to cooler temps. But on the other hand, September is a CELEBRATION OF SEWING! September is celebrated as National Sewing Month and is co-sponsored by the Sewing & Craft Alliance and the American Sewing Guild.

A Brief History of National Sewing Month

President Ronald Reagan signatureIn September 1982, President Ronald Reagan signed Proclamation #4976, declaring that September as National Sewing Month. The proclamation recognized the tens of millions of Americans home sewists and  “the skill and the self-reliance which are so characteristic of this Nation.” This was followed with successive annual proclamations by President Reagan during his terms. But in 2005, the request for a proclamation was not accommodated. However, even without a Presidential proclamation, September continued to be supported and promoted as National Sewing Month by various organizations.

In  2008, the American Sewing Guild joined forces with the Sewing & Craft Alliance to continue the promotion of National Sewing Month and provide a central location for the distribution of National Sewing Month information and materials to organizations, educators, sewing enthusiasts and anyone else interested in promoting and/or participating in activities for National Sewing Month.

Celebrate With Sewing: Sew For The Love Of It Contest

 Sew For the Love of It logoNational Sewing Month is celebrated with a contest to showcase and encourage sewing creativity and imagination. This year’s theme is “Sew For the LOVE of it!” 

The contest runs through September 30, 2011. Official rules and entry can be found on the National Sewing Month website. Here’s what you should be thinking:

“Show us what YOU love to sew! You choose the project, whether it’s an article of clothing, a toy, something for your home, an accessory, a quilt, or even an item for your car or boat. Whatever you decide to create, show your love with a within the project. It can be heart fabric, a pillow shaped like a heart, heart embroidery, heart-shaped pockets – it’s completely up to you. The item you enter must be hand-crafted and utilize fabric, thread and sewing machine and there MUST be a visible heart somewhere on the project itself. Whatever you choose to sew, just make sure we see the expression of your love of sewing!”

Think about using National Sewing Month in your neighborhood group challenge this month. If you have pictures, be sure to post them to the Members’ Projects album or email me to post them.

Follow National Sewing Month on Twitter

Twitter logo

The National Sewing Month is on Twitter, @sewingmonth. Watch their tweets for daily giveaways and tutorials posted to the National Sewing Month website.

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, @sewchicago. Watch for our special National Sewing Month tweets with the hashtag “#NatSewMo”. We and other sewists around the Twitter-sphere are using the hashtag to share our enthusiasm for sewing!

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Sewing With Nancy

Sewing With Nancy

(Image source: Louisiana Public Broadcasting)

Did you know you can watch full episodes of Nancy Zieman’s Sewing With Nancy shows online? From the Wisconsin PBS Station. Yay public television!

 

March is National Craft Month

National Crafting Month logo

Image source: Burdastyle.com

Yikes! Where did the time go?

Sorry, dear readers, for being so silent on you — but part of the reason that I’m so late about talking about National Craft Month is that I’ve been prowling around other sites looking for ideas to share with you…and before you know it, it’s 2am and I’m too buggy-eyed to write. So, I’m back in the saddle and have several things to share over the next few posts.

National Craft Month

Ok, if you haven’t heard, March is National Craft Month. Some people think of crafts as something less than serious…that’s ok. Why not use this month to explore other types of sewing to add to your repertoire? Free yourself from rules; play a little…or play a lot. If you’re not a quilter, try a quilting technique to add to your next project. Ever made plush food? They can be fun to make as well as calorie-free! Or maybe you’ve been admiring an embellishing technique…give yourself the freedom to explore and play this month!

Just make something!

Here are some idea starters in case you don’t already have a When-I-Finish-This-I’ll-Try-This list:

ASG Chicago's Pincushions NG make pincushions

Pincushions NG make pincushions.

Don’t be afraid. Just try something new. Most of all, making a craft is about having fun! As should sewing be! If you make something, be sure to post it to our Flickr group of Members’ Projects. Or email me a picture and I’ll be sure to post it for you. Maybe you’ve already made something for St. Patrick’s Day?

Happy Craft Month!

President’s Day Quiz: Which U.S. President Was A Tailor?

Sign from Andrew Johnson's Tailor Shop

Image source: TN History for Kids

Answer: Andrew Johnson, our 17th President.

At the age of 14, Andrew Johnson’s widowed mother apprenticed the young man to a tailor in order to give him a trade.

“Two years after beginning his apprenticeship, Johnson and his friends threw rocks at a tradesman’s house out of mischief. When the occupant of the house threatened to call the police, Johnson left town and abandoned his apprentice work at the tailor shop of John J. Selby. Johnson fled to Carthage, North Carolina sixty miles from Raleigh. He found a market for his tailoring skills in Carthage but moved to Laurens, South Carolina to distance himself further from the trouble in Raleigh. After a year in Laurens, Johnson returned to Raleigh and sought to complete his apprenticeship under John Selby. Selby, however, no longer owned the tailor shop and had no need of an apprentice. With no available employment in Raleigh, Johnson led his mother, brother, and stepfather to Tennessee in 1826.

Andrew settled the family in Greeneville, Tennessee, and established a tailor’s shop by nailing a sign over the door stating simply, “A. Johnson, Tailor.” — Source: NCpedia.org

Goose iron at Andrew Johnson Historic Site

Image source: National Park Service

The store, with its original shingle, is now a National Historic Site. You can try on reproductions of 1800’s and a pick up a heavy “goose” iron, like the ones that Andrew Johnson would have used in his shop. It’s certainly not a Rowenta!

I’ve been amazed at not only our presidents’ humble beginnings, but how much sewing-related information can be found at the Presidential National Parks sites. If you didn’t catch it, go to my blog post about Mrs. Truman’s inauguration fashions and read about a few of my finds while in Kansas City.

Valentine’s Day Sewing?

Forgive me for not posting on Valentine’s Day and asking: Did you make anything special for Valentine’s Day? We’d love to see it! Upload a picture on our Members’ Projects album on Flickr. Or, send it to me and I’ll be happy to post it for you. We really want to see what you’re making!

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