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Subscriber Profile; Joyce

January’s subscriber profile was with Joyce @poplinpeony who tells us more about her sewing journey.

Tell us about your sewing journey. When and how did you start sewing?

My mom has been sewing for as long as I can remember. When I was young I was sometimes allowed to sew clothes and blankets for my Barbie dolls and baby dolls.

I never really did more than that, when I was 15 I sewed my own party dress, it was shiny and bright pink, and to be honest, hideous. I actually did wear it to the school gala and it makes me cringe when I think about it. After that I didn’t sew for years. I went to higher education and lived in a dorm. When my boyfriend and I found an apartment together – in 2013- he said seriously: ‘If we are actually going to live together, you HAVE to find a hobby. You’ll drive me crazy if you don’t’. To be fair I had no pastimes besides watching TV and occasionally reading a book, so he was right. I bought myself a sewing machine from IKEA. I was instantly hooked, but within a year the poor quality annoyed me so much. With the help of my grandma and boyfriend I got myself a massive upgrade.

You have been subscribed to the Luxury box since May 2020, what made you want to sign up?

On Instagram and YouTube I kept seeing the beautiful boxes Hayley curates, and I was always lusting after them. Then Tamlyn from @sewnonthetyne did an unboxing video and added a discount code. That was the final push I needed to subscribe. I started with the Classic box, and I loved it. But when I saw the Luxury box, I must say I was a bit jealous. Luckily the beautiful cotton lawn was available in the outlet shop. I upgraded to the Luxury box and have never regretted that decision. I love the special fabrics that go in, and I very much enjoy the paper pattern included every month. It just feels so glamorous to not have to tape 40 pages together.

Do you have a favourite box from the last few months?

My all time favourite fabric i ever got from Hayley is the Lady McElroy cotton lawn from May’s Luxury box, I made two dresses from it and even a matching headband. These two dresses are probably my most worn items from last summer. But technically I didn’t get that fabric in a box… So I would choose the Riviera themed box from July, which contained the most beautiful viscose crepe with a vintage tile print. I had the hardest time choosing a pattern, I was so scared to mess it up. In the end I took some inspiration from Instagram and I made the Fibre Mood Mindy dress, lengthened to a maxi, and with ruffle sleeves instead of long ones. I haven’t gotten the chance to wear it very much, so I can’t wait for summer!

What is the best thing about receiving a monthly box of sewing goodies?

My secret is, I am a child at heart. I love getting presents and subscription boxes are basically presents. I’ve had several, from stationary to french tights, to cosmetics. Hayleys boxes are by far the best. It’s like getting a gift every month, and it being sewing related makes it even better. I love being surprised by the content and treating myself to something special. Even though I am on a fabric ban right now, I am not giving up my SewHayleyJane box! The notions always come in handy and I love making small gifts or goodies for myself from the fat quarters. January’s fabric wouldn’t have been anything I’d ever chosen myself, but I already have so many ideas for it!

Do you have a favourite make from your subscription?

It would have to be the Nina Lee Park Lane dress from the cotton lawn from the May box. I love that the fabric is bright, happy and playful, but because of the length, the high neckline and it having sleeves, it is still appropriate for work. I am a teacher at a vocational college so there are certain things that wouldn’t be appropriate for work. I decided to wear this dress on the first day of school. This way my students know what they are in for and won’t ever be surprised by my colourful outfits. A close second are the Carolyn Pyjamas in the starry viscose, because if not now, when are you going to need fancy pyjamas.

Are you working on anything at the moment?

Before writing this I cut out the Sapporo coat by Papercut patterns. I had some fabric in my stash and I was lucky to be able to fit the pattern pieces on it. I hope I like the fit of it, because I am looking for a pattern to make a quilted coat. I have seen so many beautiful ones on Instagram. I have started a collection of all my precious cotton scraps, including a few from the boxes. If anyone has any suggestions for patterns for a quilted coat, I would love to hear!