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Q&A with Sophia from Jessalli Handmade

Can you tell us a little bit about you and your blog?
I’m Sophia, the creator of Jessalli Handmade. I started my blog to show my customers behind the scenes in my studio and the production of my handmade personalised gifts. But it grew into a platform to share everything about my handmade life, latest makes and crafting discoveries. 
When did you start crafting and what inspired you to start? What was your first project?
I’ve been crafting since I was tiny. My Mum taught me to sew. She used to make all our costumes for school plays and ballet showcases. I used to love wearing what she made me, and I was always interested in it. So she taught me how and the rest is history!
What is your favourite craft?
I love sewing. Sewing is my life. I’ve only recently got back into dressmaking, after many years of making soft furnishings and gifts. It’s come back with a bang though and I’m totally addicted. 
What do you love most about crafting?
I love the whole process, from drawing out ideas, the making and then the satisfaction of having something no one else has. That’s why I think I love making gifts for friends and family too. It’s more personal. 
Do your friends or family craft along with you?
Mum loves to sew with me. She used to help me a huge amount back in the day. I’ve tried to get my sister into it, but she’s more interested in baking (something I’m awful at!). Everyone else loves what I do, but doesn’t necessarily want to help - especially if it takes more than 15 minutes!
Who do you make things for?
Everyone. My mum always asks me to embellish her clothes with my designs. My friends love me making outfits for them. My sister likes me to customise her shop-bought items and most of my family love receiving handmade gifts. I’m always busy. And then of course I actually have a business to run too! 
What made you decide to start to blog about your crafting?
It was a way for my customers to see me making their precious items. I wanted them to be able to see into my studio and all the processes of making. I’m so glad I did. 
What 3 sewing or craft items/tools could you not live without?
Small Snips, Medium Dressmaking Scissors and my beloved machine Maggie. 
What are your favourite fabrics to sew with and why?
Most of my products and gifts are made from Cotton Fabric. But dressmaking wise, I love to sew with Jersey Fabric and Ponte Roma Knits
What is your favourite product on the Minerva Crafts website and what would you make with it?
At the moment the Multicoloured Fleck Soft Sweatshirt Fabric in Pink. I love baby pink right now and think a gorgeously cosy drop-shoulder sweater would be amazing. 
How many projects do you have on the go at one time?
Gosh, too many. I maybe have 3 or 4 orders all ‘in the making’ at any one time. Then 2 or 3 personal projects too. I’m always in a state of making. And I love it like that. 
Whats your favourite thing you have ever made?
I’d have to say, now, my Palm Leaf print Holly Jumpsuit. It was my first project for the MCBN and so different to what I usually make and wear. But I’ve totally fallen in love with it and want to wear it all the time! I love how an item of clothing can make you feel so good!
What is your latest WIP (Work in progress)?
At the moment I’m actually making another Holly Jumpsuit for my best friend. She’s got a ball to go to and we thought a bright red crepe version would look stunning. Luckily we found the perfect red polyester crepe on the website!
Do you watch TV or listen to music while you craft?
I always listen to music. I usually go through Spotify playlists and listen to anything from acoustic tracks to 90’s pop songs!
What/who do you go to for inspiration before you start crafting?
Pinterest. If, say, I have a sweater pattern and am thinking about making a floral print variation. I’ll type in ‘floral sweater’ and see what looks great and what colours I think would look good on me. Then I can search for fabrics that are as close to my vision. 
Do you have a crafty tip you would like to share?
Always have a good quality sharp pair of scissors. You will not survive without them. 
Do you follow other blogs? If so which blogs?
I try to. It’s hard to find the time to read and follow all my favourites. Youtube is now a great way for me to easily catch up with what they’re doing. I love watching Lisa Comfort from Sew Over It, and love reading Studio DIY.
Do you have any advice for new bloggers?
Only write about what you love. However, If you’ve made something you’re not proud of, share it anyway and share your mistakes. You’ll be surprised at how invaluable that information is to others. No body is perfect!
Could you sum yourself up as a crafter in 3 words?
Perfectionist, Passionate and Pattern obsessed! 
What are your crafting ambitions?
My one ambition is to have a Handmade wardrobe. As in, no matter what I’m doing or where I’m going I’ll have something I’ve made that I can wear! 
What would you say to anyone looking to start a new craft?
Don’t hesitate. Everyone has to start somewhere. And most importantly, have fun!

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suesews said:

lovely blog. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and giving us all some inspiration. Sharing mistakes is important not only for the learning process but to reassure that not every project is fantastic. · 15th Aug 2017 09:08pm