An Atlantic Sewing Guild Tale June 2018

There once was a motley crew who shared profound interests.

They merrily met monthly in a seaside city to share their vast knowledge & to chat & to laugh.

Word spread far & wide about the good times being had by all.

Gradually the gaggle became larger & then Much Larger in number.
And soon the Interesting People were sharing very close quarters indeed, for the space had not expanded as their numbers had.  A special delegation was (not so) secretly empowered to expand their erstwhile horizons.
They persevered in their joyful meetings, close quarters though they endured.  And they discovered how valuable it was to catch knowledge & friendship by osmosis & by rubbing elbows with others of their ilk.
collage Group (5pics)
collage group (6)

During a particular gathering of Powerful Ilk, one of this band of Wise Ones stepped forward to relay stories of her journey to create a tome for all Sewing Kind.Barb1

Barb2Her odyssey was roundly received and lauded as virtuous & just. Tomes were inscribed and hereafter to become part of true history & lore.

Mighty powers gathered in this small nexus as their leader, aided by gesticulating hands of many, then called forth all to share their most recent quests & victories.
Lorna bring me your makescollage hands

And Lo the call was answered.  Mightily.

collage Reina
collage S&T (6)
collage Cristina

Scribe of the Band dutifully recorded all for posterity.
Sheila notes

Concluding the Gathering, a Noble Challenge was issued for all to henceforth dare their hand by the month of October.
LeeAnne announcing

The intrepid delegation which had been sent forth far & wide to seek a more commodious magical place achieved their task.
And from this time forth, the new locus shall be so.


Please join the Atlantic Sewing Guild next meeting
Thursday, September 13, 2018
come early to register (~6:30 for 7:00)
Trinity Anglican Church Hall
321 Main Avenue,

ASG Facebook Link

ASG email address link


Rockin' Round Robin

*ROCKED* the Atlantic Sewing Guild

On May 8, 2018, three talented and generous members shared their expertise with the Guild on handling various bias techniques.

When Josée (ASG Past President) told us she had a very interesting & different way of cutting long bias strips, she was definitely not kidding.  Her clear demonstration was so helpful – & a great way to avoid that old tedious marking & cutting across a single layer.  Many watched her explanation several times & took away her directions to remind us how to do at home.


Faye (Treasurer) showed us the ins & outs of how to use bias strips for gorgeous Hong Kong seam edge finishing.  IMG_5147Her tweed jacket Morris Blazer finish was also particularly interesting, as she had to make up for a short front facing pattern piece.  Always quick on our feet & ready to “wing it” –  these ASG sewers!

(President) Lorna’s method of using bias strips to aid sleeve cap insertion will save us from those pesky little gathered blips at the sleeve head.

Even though Pat M couldn’t be with us, we were able to peruse some of her beautiful

IMG_5127work with bias strips during Round Robin, and see the  colourful backdrops they provided during the always eventful Sew & Tell.

ASG Always Eventful Sew & Tell

Suzanne’s traffic stopping Deer & Doe Luzerne trench and her commodious Swoon tote.

Welcome to new member Lisa who told us about making the Sew Over It Grace, her part in an on-line sew-along, in which sewistas from all over the world create a piece especially for their assigned person (rather like the old pen pal letter arrangements, but with a whole lot more work – & excitement).  Lisa will be also be receiving a surprise in return.  Interesting concept!
IMG_5007IMG_5009Our bee-keeper Donna’s two Jalie dolmans one in floral, cracking up our president with her quips, and in aptly coloured stripes.

Pat N continues her quest to sew all the jeans skirts with OOP Kwik Sew 1708.

Cindy co. copyCindy’s Cashmerette Concord T.


Cathy took part in her first ASG Seaside Sewing event where she not only had a great time (& we enjoyed her being there!), but she also got back into garment sewing in a big way, sewing up shirts both for herself  (OOP Simplicity 9318) & her husband with McCall’s 6613IMG_5029





Leeanne always finds really interesting patterns on the internet, an example being her Wiksten Kimono, which is a free download.LeeAnne




IMG_5049Anita in her TNT Jalie Helene shows one of those great Summit packs and OOP Cecelia Podolak Fearless T-shirt 109.








Elte’s lively garments always cheer – and she doesn’t use a pattern!


IMG_5109Marcia’s stylish trifecta included her pretty-in-pink Blackwood Cardi,
the StyleArc Evie top, and Closet Case Ebony dress.

IMG_5058Nasirah won over that slippery fabric with her Kwik Sew shirt.

Arylene’s foray into sewing a cozy little pink Burda coat.

IMG_5066Nancy shows her linen/cotton Style Arc Vivienne with her always-special extra embroidered accents and her entire outfit IMG_5071 is also created by her, comprising Jalie top & cardi and OOP Kwik Sew 1708 skirt.

Angela, a member of many interests, shows her intricate self-designed seascape quilt and is up to her refashioning again, with a dress made of 9 tee-shirts, which we watched her drape at ASG’s most recent Seaside Sewing retreat.

A little robin told us that the usual good time was had by all!
round robin

DON’T MISS Atlantic Sewing Guild last meeting of the 2017-2018 season

TUESDAY, June 13, 2018, 7PM, and our last ever at


ASG Facebook link

ASG email address link



 On the day before Valentine’s Day, who better to greet ASG members than the lovely Margo Bergman?Margo

So many of us already follow Margo’s blog Creating in the Gap that we  knew it was going to be a very special evening with her in our midst.  No question that Margo will have more devoted followers after her presentation this fine evening of February 13, 2018.

At the door we found her smiling face and just beyond, spied a colourful riot

of her creations.  We could see made up some of the very fabric that we’ve been holding onto in our own “Stash Closets” – a substantial spur to put scissors & thread to languishing potential.  No doubt we’re all members of the same “Fabric Petting Club”! (good concept BTW, Margo)

FAR better than Home Dec use!

She began sewing buttons at the age of four, later graduating to a pink Kennie & clearly flew from there.  Margo obviously enjoys the sewing & producing her gorgeous clothes, but also believes in working hard to make progress.  She frequently moves the goalpost further out for herself.  “Do more work.  Do more work” – a good mantra to remind us that the final garments we see on her blog are lovely, but are the results of  mindfully putting in the elbow grease.   She might make it look effortless, but Margo assures us that she too has “wadders” & has no qualms in throwing them out.  Hurray for that – let’s all get rid of those albatrosses!  And while we’re at it, we can put to rest that the  idea that “selfish sewing” is anything other than perfectly fine.

ASG loved Margo’s visit (thank you so much) and we also enjoyed meeting her dressed-up “friends”.IMG_4645
Thanks as well to Fabricville  (see Margo’s feature) and to the Halifax Hair Design Centre for the best door prizes evah.


Suzanne continues her fast & furious output with the ASG fave: her funky Jalie Helene cardigan; a Joy’s Find navy in Grainline Morris blazer and one of Margo’s faves (seen above), the True Bias Ogden cami

Marg shared her grandson’s new quilt with us – which seems to coordinate nicely with the Map of the World behind.  May he live in health with happy travels!

Bev sewed up the Loes Hinse Euro pant pattern for her classic cords, trying out instructions in the latest Threads mag for the waistband and in-seam pocket

PatPat’s latest Jalie pants

IMG_4722 copyNasirah’s OOP Simplicity 5463 beautiful paisley shirt

IMG_4718 copy



Edgar in a new McCall’s 6044 shirt & his first foray into trousers,  Kwik Sew 4045

Wearing her Cecilia Podolak Fearless Tee Anita pulls from her deep “bag of tricks” a new collection of her cozy felted hats & mitts.

Norma‘s Jalie 2682 with the interesting folded neck
& creamy cozy Silhouette’s Nina top #211



Eltee is one of our most joyous new ASG members.  She cuts without having to use patterns  & we may be privileged in a future meeting to have her do a presentation on her methods. (cross your fingers)



RingMaster Christinacreated her own Fantastic Menagerie – how gorgeous are these guys?


Margo thought she might be missing out on a monthly party with ASG and we think she’s right – it’s all about fun!

TORYIMG_4652 copyIMG_4714 copy
Special relaxation & enjoyment time with beautiful sewing friends !

Planning upcoming ASG events…

IMG_4663Angela tells us about the Refashioning Class she and Lorna  are doing on March 22 & 24. ASG Refash Class info

Cindy and Nancy hatching plans for double-barrelled Seaside Sewing May 1-3 & May 4-5.



DON’T MISS our next meeting featuring “ALWAYS BIASED”

TUESDAY, March 13, 2018, 7PM


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Friends collage

Friends catching up
JAN 9, 2018

Atlantic Sewing Guild started the New Year right – with something completely different for us.  We were joined by Jackie and Joseph Clairmont who are a wonderfully creative sister/brother duo.  As soon as they started the presentation about their Cos-Play adventures, they were inundated with questions from Guild members.  This was a particularly good result, as several of the most interested questioners had been self-confessedly totally uninterested in hearing about something so far from their usual experience as the world of fantasy creations!
Joseph started making his costumes way back in high school and Jackie thought this was a very peculiar pursuit – until she was later also bitten by this particular creative bug.  Now Joe fosters Jackie’s costume-sewing explorations & her studies in the Nova Scotia Community College Entrepreneurship Programme.  He approaches his work like it is “foam smithing”.
Joseph sculpts, casts & moulds many different types of materials into fanciful costumes & characters, with (and in) which he travels across Canada and as far afield as New York, where he attended Comic-Con with 200,000 other aficionadosIMG_4457!  (Comic-Con is a pop-culture conference phenomenon for people with interests as diverse as comic books, card & video games and which crosses genres as diverse as horror, animé and independent film.)  Can you even imagine being there with so many other people also enrobed in their fantastical dreams?
Once Jackie got interested in creating her own Hallowe’en costumes in high school, she began to see in Joe the perfect older brother guru, who introduced her to this world of most intriguing characters.  Joseph sculpts while Jackie sews.
IMG_4456She drafts and alters her own costume patterns and after NSCC is hoping to begin a costuming clinic.  Both are inspired by the challenging aspects of creating characters who exist first in the mind or from far-gone eras, then bringing them to life as interpretations with their artistic vision.  Jackie & Joe have met new friends from far & wide while also contributing to various charities through their participation & guest appearances.

Questions didn’t stop throughout the talk & beyond, members learning many new terms and concepts.  Before this evening, who of us could discuss the use of materials like ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA), or the upcoming Geekquinox in April?  We even got to meet Ed Head, who serves as a base for Joe’s scupting.

All in all, this was a fascinating glimpse into a new world for ASG.  And who could fail to be impressed with the obvious regard and respect for each other that Joseph and Jackie Clairmont shared with us this first meeting of 2018?  (and yes, they sometimes do commissions)

Super “I Can” Brother & Sister

ASG had a propitious start to 2018,

filling up more boxes with materials for our community sewing day on February 3 *(SEE BELOW).  We are collecting warm hats, scarves and mittens for the homeless of our city.  And we will meet for a group sewing day to make pyjama pants from the warm donated fabrics.

We were able to glean some warm fabrics from Joy’s Finds recoveredfor our PJ purposes.  And this last grouping of Joy’s fabrics was again gratefully received by many members.

IMG_3946Janet kept her hands busy & Carolyn enjoyed the goings-on,

Carolyn enjoys the goings on

while Karen kept track of us and Sheila kept up with notes for us.
Wait a sec – who’s that?IMG_4475


Edgar shows us how to successfully mix it up in his Christmas shirts (& he actually used real buttonholes for these!) McCall’s 6044

IMG_4485Tory also shows us how to mix it up, adding fly-front, pockets & waistband to her Jalie jeans.  In October, she gave her popular class to sew the Eleanore pattern in a day (seriously – one!).  Tory’s Jeans in a Day Class

Pat is ahead of schedule with her self-imposed 2018 quantity sewing.  She showed iterations of Jalie’s Marie Claude 3667 in some lovely knits from Mill Yardage of New England.

IMG_4507Nancy‘s raglan dress was cozy & just perfect for winter (although we did miss her Twirly-Whirly) Butterick 6494

Anita, with one of her most favourite TNTs: the Jalie Helen cardi

Leanne showing us she is not being accosted by her clever neckpiece creation & in stitches as we discuss her very sharp Colette Phoebe dress

IMG_4526Nasira shows us another pattern she has recently been happy to complete (great job with Simplicity 5463!)

We wrap up the evening with Carolyn in her Love Notions slims with their Sloan sweater; and our President Lorna taking a bow in her version of the Jalie Jean.

Community Sew Day is Saturday Feb. 3, 10 – 4
51 Farnham Gate Rd., Halifax
Atlantic Sewing Guild on Facebook

We have a special guest lined up to speak at our next meeting – hints will be on ASG facebook & email to come!



Never listen when you hear that sewing
is a sedentary or solitary craft-

Heads & Shoulders
Knees & Toes
Knees & Toes
And Etcetera

-Because it’s really really fun when it’sIMG_3797



Pre-holiday hijincks
& strenuous exercise

At the December meet-up, Barb Emodi exercised our brains with a fabulous presentation on the many ways to approach pattern manipulation for your very best fit.  (And a reminder to “Control yourself, People: do one alteration at a time!”)  She distills to the sensible axiom of using differing methods, depending on the preference, comfort, location & size requirements of the Sewer/Seamstress/Sewist. This brought up another interesting thought of what we call ourselves in 2017 – soon to be 2018 – my personal fave is Sempstress, a lovely Victorian & dignified term – probably not generally loved for the same reasons.  However, the funniest has to be her blog’s Sewing on the Edge accidental moniker “a serial sewing sexist”.

Maybe it’s those racy pictures she uses to explain alterations?

Barb made clear the differences among the many methods – we could see lights beginning to go on as members nodded & “aha’d” throughout her presentation.  We look forward to her book coming up for publication in Spring 2018: “Sew The Garment-Making Book of Knowledge.  Real-Life Lessons from a Serial Sewist“.

Sew & Tell added to the usual hilarity, made all the more so by a sweet & savoury repast shared by our talented bakers.

Rhea‘s using reversible knit for Love Notions Origami


Anita‘s also using a Love Notions – Trendy tunic; And McCall’s slippers with leather bottoms & fabric from VV


Marilyn completed the coat she was working on at SSS with a panel of  pretty scarf & Japanese appliqués; a clever bag to match from scraps; a beach bag towel combo for gifting.


Sheila using some of our bounty of Joy fabric for OOP Vogue 8335.  Her Summer Challenge (3 visible fabrics) in OOP Vogue 1363


Suzanne‘s very painstakingly & beautifully sewn Vogue 9267, which she plans to alter & adjust further to her satisfaction; Kathleen‘s dress that started with OOP Vogue 8582 & ended with Joy fabric & some salvaged golf shirt collars


Pat made many oven mitts for gifts, using jelly rolls (so pretty!); We celebrate with Nasirah‘s first use of a commercial pattern Simplicity 5463; Norma‘s Silhouette 709 which she also started at SSS & found needing significant lengthening, along with coordinating Silhouette Yoga Pants


Angela‘s creative use of a tunic with interesting & colourful border detail, which she fashioned into coordinates, with top tied in with embellishment.


Our very own comedy troupe, Julie, Lorna, Linda & Carolyn, showing their Jalie Jeans made in Tory‘s Jeans in a Day Class


Edgar‘s festive McCall’s 6044 slim shirt


Our generous Atlantic Sewing Guild members filled 2 bins already with warm socks, mitts and fabric for our upcoming Community Sewing Day (February 3), when we will sew up warm pyjama pants for the homeless of Halifax.


Here’s a bargain you can scoop up, if it fits your machine better than it fits Rhea’s embroidery machine.  $69.  Contact her:

this onemachine trolley

Please remember to bring donations to the next meeting of warm hats, socks, mitts or warm fabric cuts for PJ bottoms for our upcoming ASG Community Sewing Project




There was no mistaking the sheer happiness of Atlantic Sewing Guild members in each others’ company at the October 10/17 meeting.  Our theme could well prove to be faces smiling with joy in our night’s camaraderie and entertainment.  Shiny Happy People link (Do we love those classic cheerful 1990’s outfits?)

IMG_3359Contributing of course was BRENDA BOUDREAU’S presentation of her husband Bob’s quilts, which lived up to long-awaited expectations.  Who knew that she is, in addition to a long-time member of ASG, our very own salmon & trout fly-casting girl?  Brenda spoke lovingly not only about Bob’s amazingly detailed quilts, but also of the enthusiasm they share for the great outdoors and fishing.  This is true synergy: she became interested in his fishing & he became interested in her sewing machine.  Bob is a true Renaissance Man with his hands in business, Bonsai, landscaping & gardening, photography — & this night’s presentation: his quilting!







Bob Boudreau’s quilts are works of art deserving to be hung.  His painstaking compositions are studies in patience combined with the artist’s eye for minute detail.  The gradations of colour and fine machine stitching are accomplishments particularly admired by ASG members.  The quilt shown directly above is made up of over 1750 tiny squares and is created from his early school portrait.  (All these works were deserving of far better picture quality; unfortunately, this photographer & her camera phone fall short.)  Brenda did justice in her presentation and all in attendance were captivated.

SUMMER CHALLENGE: 3 fabrics within one garment


LUCY used Marcy Tilton Vogue 9057 and McCall’s 7122

EDGAR our quick-change artist delights us with his homage to Star Trek in McCall’s6044

KATHLEEN’S Tilton Vogue 8975 and Style Arc Toni   MARY in her TNT Silhouette top

Librarian BARB’S shirt Loes Hinse 5203      Coffee Host LEANNE’S skirt Made by RaeCleo

ANGELA shows Her Own design Upcycle       MARILYN combined Kwik Sew 3873 & 3915

BRENDA’S Newport Bag

We’ll take our leave of October 10 with the Smiling Faces of sisters ALAYNE & FAYE


  • GREAT HALIFAX SEWING BEE takes place at our November meeting.  (The festivities are Very Secret – not even your executive knows what we’ll be up to – other than more ASG fun!)
  • For the GHSB we will be using the gymnasium rather than the Campbell Centre
  • Bits & bobs – haberdashery & scraps & interesting smalls will still be gladly accepted at beginning of Nov. meeting
  • There will be no Show & Tell this month
  • December 2, 2017 Tory’s Jeans in a Day Class link
  • Visit the Atlantic Sewing Guild on Book of the Face Atlantic Sewing Guild link
  • email us


The Great Halifax Sewing Bee Pictures

Here are the pictures from our April meeting that was the Great Halifax Sewing Bee, as a little preview for what’s to come in the videos over the next few weeks.

Photos are in chronological order of when they were taken. Please click any to enlarge and scroll through.

As more photos are sent to me, I’ll add them in. Should plenty more be added, I’ll send a reminder for people to have another look at this post. Most people were pretty involved so there’ll likely only be new photos of finished garment.

For all the posts related to this event, please click here.

Pictures from November 2015 ASG Meeting

Here are the pictures I got from our November meeting. There aren’t many with people in it because it’s hard to get good pictures of people when they’re talking. We clearly need to make more things out of cheese… or things that rhyme with cheese. 🙂

There were many beautiful and clever Christmas quickies items members were shown how to make, and some beautiful show and tell items as usual.

Sorry for these being late. Work had put me in a course that was far more demanding than what was stated.

Mary’s and Sheila’s Silhouette #675 Blouses

When a member of our Guild has a good experience with a pattern, there’s a decent chance another or more will also give it a go. The Silhouette #675 “Mani’s Blouse” pattern is one such example.

Below are Mary and Sheila with their versions of Mani’s blouse, with style alterations done by each and worn on a meeting day recently!

Very nicely done, Sheila and Mary!

Mary and Sheila in Silhouette #675
Mary and Sheila in Silhouette #675