I came across a great Etsy shop called Abygail Elizabeth . What drew me to her shop was another member of Etsy who had pointed out her adorable tank tops and summer clothes.
I asked her what is the busiest time of year for her , her answer "This year, so far I am constantly selling".
I asked about what her favorite items to make are...
"I like making all my items; I will say my least favorite is knit tops - my serger does not not like to go around he tight curves"
Sandra was born in Canada and moved to England shortly after turning 1, and more then 25 years ago she moved to the USA with her husband..
Her mother was always sewing. Sandra says she played around with fabric from a very early age. She was given needle and thread at the age of about 3, just went in and out of fabric - progressed to making doll stuff such as skirts, pillows etc all by hand stitching. When she was about 10 years of age she was given a Dressmakers Doll with patterns. Using these patterns still hand sewing she was introduced to pleats, buttonholes, setting in sleeves etc.
Her mother eventulally allowed her use her sewing machine at the age of about 12. Progressed to 4 years of training in pattern making, draping, techniques and design. The courses were design for preparation for teaching or to work in small fashion houses or such places like Harrods alterations. Sandra tells me she has no knowledge of mass production work. She says she did a lot of pattern making in England, little call for it in the USA except for wedding dresses and the endless alterations.
But I wondered how Sandra got into sewing for American Girl Dolls...
"A friend was in need of items and help at a Craft Show; at the time I was making Nantucket Baskets and had made a few American Girl Doll Clothes for my eldest granddaughter. I agreed to help, the Nantucket baskets are expensive to make and not easy to sell (even at cost) so I decided to make doll clothes. I did sell 3 baskets and a lot of doll clothes. I then decided I would set up at indoor craft shows. (Only set up at one now). I am only able to produce sufficient inventory for Etsy and the one show a year."
Sandra is also a Liberty Jane Partner, she uses and adapts some of the Liberty Jane Patterns in her work. She also started a Collectable and Antique business in 1987, and use the other shop to list antiques and some of her personal stuff such as overstocks fabric and books.
Sandra also make the odd item for The Karito Kids Dolls.
Sandra's hobbies include weaving, making Nantucket’s baskets, knitting, teaching my craft, antiques and collectibles, She also use to play competitive tennis at club level.
Sandra strives to provide her customers with well constructed clothing, long lasting, easy to care for, limited quantities made of the same fabric, low price, items.
I hope you will take time to stop by Sandra's shop at AbygailElizabeth
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