Christine Haynes is one hip sewist, and she’s also one fantastic sewing instructor. We’re lucky to have her here at Craftsy, instructing the online sewing class, The Sassy Librarian Blouse. She’s made a name for herself with her strong sense of style that seems to be informed in equal parts by the timeless fashion of French new wave films, and retro/vintage chic of thrift stores. We wanted to find out more about her influences, style, and history. So we sat down with Christine, and interviewed her for this week’s Craftsy blog feature, Maker Monday!
So Christine, let’s start at the beginning: When and why did you first start sewing?
My mom taught me to sew when I was about 10 years old. I didn’t really sew on a serious level until I was about 18 after graduating high school. My first year of art school I worked at a fabric store and it really took off from there!
In addition to blouses (namely of the Sassy Librarian variety), your wrap skirts are quite popular. What inspired you to sell wrap skirts?
I was making them for myself and lots of my girlfriends in art school wore them too. So I thought, hey, I’ll just make a whole mess load of wrap skirts for my first Renegade Craft Fair!
Of all the projects you’ve sewn so far, which one are you most proud of?
Each project has a special moment. Like today, I was particularly happy with my invisible zipper! But overall, I’m really proud of the quilt I’m making right now. It’s my first, it’s huge, and I’m really in love with how it’s turning out.
OK, so now that so many Craftsy sewists are making and sporting their own Sassy Librarian blouse, we want to know: When do you wear your sassy librarian blouse?
Well, when I’m feeling sassy of course! Or, maybe it’s really best to wear it when I am not feeling sassy, but need the top to help make me feel sassy!
Now that you’ve been teaching an online sewing class here at Craftsy, we’re eager to know what you like about teaching your craft online.
The Craftsy platform is really amazing in that it reaches every corner of the world and connects me to people I would have never had one-on-one contact with. I love seeing where the people live that leave comments or have questions, and I think to myself, wow, this person is in Australia, or Russia, or Berlin! It’s amazing.
Aside from the valuable tips you give in your class, do you have any advice for aspiring sewists just starting out?
Enjoy the process by not jumping in over your head too quickly! Everyone wants to do something really hard at first, but it will only frustrate you and discourage you. Take your time and enjoy the process of learning something new!
As many people who know of you are aware, you have a hard time resisting thrift stores. We’ve all had some good finds at secondhand shops, but what about you? What are some of your favorite items that you’ve found in thrift stores?
Oh, I’ve found some real gems over the years, like a hand beaded Paris couture jacket from the 1950’s. But I only keep things that I actually wear and don’t keep thrift store finds for sentimental reasons, so most of those really fancy things have gone back to circulation.
Lastly, let’s talk about social media. You’re a blogger, a tweeter, and more. But which one do you enjoy updating the most?
Instagram! I’m a very visual person, so Twitter does nothing for me, but Instagram is all imagery, all the time! If you want to follow me, I’m at @christinehaynes.
Subscribe to our blog, as our Maker Monday series continues next week! And in case you missed it last week, learn more about how sugarcraft instructor Nicholas Lodge got his start.