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    Mother's Stories for Mother's Day

    This Mother's Day we spoke to some beautiful women who are mothers, to celebrate the connection of sewing and motherhood.

    In the lead up to Mother's Day, we will be sending an email out interviewing a community member to dive deeper into Motherhood and the sewing connection.

    For our final interview, we have the pleasure of speaking with the lovely mother-daughter duo, Zoe and Diane, who graciously speak of the role sewing has played in their bond.

    Zoe & Diane

    First we speak with Zoe from @sew.zoh

    Tell us about how you started sewing, did your Mother have any influence on this?

    Three years ago my mum mentioned that my Nanna wasn't using her sewing machine and if I ever wanted, she would be happy for me to have it. She ended up dropping it over for me and it went untouched for many months. It was nearing my first born's first christmas when I started searching Etsy for his first Christmas outfit. I thought I could make some of the pieces myself so I decided to give it a go and I successfully made Björn a few christmas outfits. The fulfilment I felt from making something with my hands was addictive and my love of sewing began from there.

    How do you balance being a busy mum of three kids under four! Is sewing hard to fit in?

    Sewing is becoming more and more difficult to fit in. It would be very easy to say 'I just don't have the time anymore' but sewing is so important to me in exercising my own identity outside of being a mother so I do what I can to make it a priority. Sometimes that looks like 1-2 hours a week and sometimes it is even less than that but I'm not hard on myself. I set no expectations on what I will get to in the week. As long as I know I have an outlet and these small little pockets of time to work with my hands and create something, that's enough to keep me sane. I am just exercising the slowest form of slow fashion at the moment!

    "I know that I am blessed in saying this but what I love about being a daughter is the epitome of having an unconditional best friend. Mum is the best - not only as a mother but in who she is as a person."

    You made so many beautiful things in your pregnancy! Any tips for sewing and accommodating a bump?
    I have been pregnant for 3 out of the past 5 years so my sewing journey has been tricky working alongside my ever expanding and contracting sizing. I ensure that I make garments that I can wear outside of my pregnancy which usually look like flowy dresses or cropped blouses. It is also the ideal time to explore other types of projects such as jackets, sewing tote bags/backpacks, embroidery etc. My recent pregnancy my water actually broke in one of my memade pieces and I was sent to the hospital and had to early labour in my dress - I was so relieved it wasn't ruined but it is a funny memory to hold when I go to wear this piece again.
    What do you love about being a Mum and also a daughter?
    I want to be a better person for my kids and that is something that inspires every facet of my life. I want them to see me being creative and taking the time out to pursue something I am passionate about. They are very curious about the sewing machine and I explain as much as I can to them - you become a teacher of all things! I know that I am blessed in saying this but what I love about being a daughter is the epitome of having an unconditional best friend. Mum is the best - not only as a mother but in who she is as a person. So essentially what I love about being a daughter is that I get my mum? Is that a selfish answer haha?

    Now we speak with Diane from @stitchedup_bydi

    It’s lovely to see you and your daughter on Instagram share the love of sewing. Do you have any fond memories of sewing together? Or learning to sew?

    Actually Zoe only really took an interest in sewing when she had got married and started having children. She had just finished University, studying Industrial Design and she did really well.  I guess the main reason she took up sewing was so she could make her own clothes to fit her petite size and also it was a creative outlet for her.  I hadn’t sewn seriously for a few years, having gone into the work force when I was able and not really having the time, or the drive for sewing.  I worked in the fashion industry though for some time.   Zoe then decided once she got married and started having children that she thought she would like to give it a go.   And off she went, hahaha, she’s done so well in such a short time.  She then inspired me to start sewing again.  Which I’m really grateful for.  

    Tell us about how you started to sew, did your Mother have any influence on this?

    I come from a family of seamstresses. My grandmother sewed costumes for my mothers ballet class and sewed all of my mothers clothes.  She also sewed our ‘Sunday’ clothes for church. My mother sewed most of mine and my sisters clothes and she also sewed my ballet costumes.

    "To be able to share this journey with her has been so fulfilling. We inspire each other, and encourage one another."

    When Zoe was little, did you make her any special pieces? If so, what were they?
    So when Zoe was a baby I made a few outfits for her.  Including a little outfit for her to wear to her christening. I wasn’t as skilled a sewer back then, but did ok.  I then went into the work force and didn’t really pick up sewing again until I retired.  But I always took an interest in sewing.  My first sewing attempt, I grabbed my mothers sewing machine at around the age of 10 and  took it into my bedroom and chopped off the bottom to a funky jump suit that I really liked, that I  had for a ballet recital and turned into a jacket. It was silky and Grease had just come out at the time so I thought that would be really cool.
    How has your sewing style changed over the years?  
    When I was teenager I loved stylish clothes.  I didn’t have a job back then. My mother was a single mum and money was tight.  So I made a couple of outfits to wear to interviews to get a job in an office.  Back then I preferred more tailored styles. My taste has changed dramatically since then. I now have a more bohemian style. And I prefer natural fibres.  Both my daughter and I have allergies, so we prefer natural fibres, cotton and linen.  
    What do you enjoy about sharing the love of sewing with your  daughter?
    It’s been such a joy to be able to share a love of creativity through sewing with Zoe.  Such a joy to have common ground and interest with your daughter.  We also are very close, so to be able to share this journey with her has been so fulfilling. We inspire each other, and encourage one another.  We always bounce ideas and thought patterns of one another.  I’ve truely been very blessed 🙏
    A huge thank you to Zoe & Diane, I absolutely loved reading through both your stories. Happy Mother's Day!