Today I have the pleasure of introducing Shannon from luvinthemommyhood. Shannon’s blog is so full of ideas. Between tutorials and refashions to featuring “Moms in the Mommyhood” as well as links to other creative finds, I always take something away from her blog. She’s a “newbie sewer” and not afraid to ask questions and share the journey right along with us. I enjoyed reading her answers from my interview and know you will too.
First, please tell us a bit about yourself.
My name is Shannon and I write the blog “luvinthemommyhood”. I’m a wife, and also a mom to my 2 ½ year old daughter. I’m currently learning how to sew, figure out html, crafting, parenting, cooking, keeping the dreaded laundry pile down, coffee in my system and sharing it all with the world.
What made you decide to start a blog? And how did you decide on a name?
I started a blog about a month after my daughter was born that was personal and geared for family and close friends to see pics of Mackenzie as she grew. I found myself lonely and needing to find an outlet to voice all the changes a new mom goes through. I’m a people person and I was missing the social interaction I had available to me before I had my daughter.
I started realizing how much I enjoyed the writing process/photography and having a new forum in which to share all the fun things I was making, and tutorials I had seen. The blog ended up shifting from just being about Mackenzie to being more about everything that encompasses my view of mommyhood.
I found other mom’s asking me for advice, what I was working on or sewing and realized hey – maybe it’s time I start another blog and really just put my whole heart and passion into it and see what happens. So I started luvinthemommyhood in March 2009. I was always having to go to a whole whack of blogs daily to get the info I was interested in and I thought it would be great to give mom’s a one stop shop of what I think makes life in the mommyhood fabulous and inspiring.
As for the name luvinthemommyhood, it just sort of came to me one day. I liked the play on the word motherhood, and I had always called it mommyhood when I was preggers. I realized I didn’t want to use the word “love” in the title and wanted to slang it up a bit to give it some personality so I chose “luv”. The whole idea was to revolve around the idea of the mommyhood being a neighbourhood and people enjoying being there, thus leading to “luvinthemommyhood”. I look at it as luv in the mommyhood – the more personal side of my life and loving being a mother and then luvin’ the mommyhood, meaning “Geez, this place is great! I’m luvin it”!
Did you have a direction that you wanted to go when you started? And has that direction changed since first starting luvinthemommyhood?
At first I just kind of jumped in and started posting whatever I found interesting at the time. I quickly realized I was posting way too much and that I was starting to lose my personality coming across in the posts. I didn’t want to just be a listing for crafts, I wanted to keep the mommy alive and bits of me in there as well. I quickly switched gears and worked my way to where we are now which is me putting all the things I find inspiring in our weekly “link luv roundup” and focusing the rest of the days on other topics or features. I try to write articles about things I am going through in my life, as well as weekly posts about fitness/health and a monthly interview featuring a mom and her business. I never expected to be doing my own tutorials – that I kind of fell into and it’s been so much fun!
I love your newbie sewing series. Do you have any tips for someone that has never sewn before but wants to try?
Just do it! Don’t be intimated, it’s one of those things you just have to jump into with both feet! It’s scary to start, but once you do, it truly is one of the most rewarding crafts I have ever tried. It truly allows you to use your imagination and creativity 110%. I rely a lot on YouTube for user videos (I’m a visual learner) and other people’s tutorials and blog posts to get inspiration, tips, techniques and advice on learning how to sew. Come join me fellow newbies – we can all learn & fumble our way together!
I also adore all your tutorials. The re-fashions are super clever. What was your favourite to make?
Thanks Mique! My favourite to make has to be the yoga capris. That truly was an experience! I usually get my ideas when I’m out walking with my daughter and then I race home to write them down. That one came on with a bam! I had so much fun looking beyond how we would normally sew pants and just going with an idea that my hubby thought was nuts. It gives me great pleasure to tell him an idea, know he thinks it’s crazy, that I will never be able to pull it off and then a few days later – bam! There it is in all its glory! I think when the pants worked and were wearable I felt like I could keep the series going and trust my instincts and go with my gut. It’s a nerve wracking process when you are learning and still finding your way.
What inspires you creatively?
This was a tough question for me. My daughter, nature & music do for sure – this is sounding corny, but it’s true….haha. I also draw a lot of inspiration from the fabric designs or wool itself and I absolutely adore scouring my home decor mags monthly. Being a people watcher (and ex-hairdresser) I am always absorbing and watching everything when I am out and about. I love to walk around downtown and scope out the indie fashion & decor shops and see what’s new & exciting on the people around me.
Just curious, organized or messy?
Ohhh, I’m a Gemini – a bit of both!
Late night crafter or midday crafter? (or any other time for that matter)
I would normally be a late night crafter and still am sometimes, but now that I have a toddler I mostly craft during nap time when I’m not writing or at night when she is in bed. I will pretty much grab whatever time I can to have some fun! I am known to jump out of bed in the middle of the night and jot down ideas, write or start making something. If I don’t, I can’t sleep!
Two of my favourite sewing books are Sew What Bags! by Lexie Barnes and Sew Darn Cute by Jenny Ryan , do you have a favourite (or two or three) to share?
The Creative Family by Amanda Blake Soule was one of the first books to truly inspire me to start sewing as well as blogging. I treasure that book and it’s one of my faves.
The next book that helped me along my way “Bend the Rules Sewing” by Amy Karol. That book pretty much sums up my sewing style. I don’t like to follow rules, I like to just wing it and find my way creatively in making a project come to life and this book made me feel like it was ok to do that.
I have to also mention “Stitched in Time” by Alicia Paulson and “Seams to Me” by Anna Maria Horner, both these books have inspired me and are filled with wonderful projects/writing. Anna’s fabric line causes me to drool uncontrollably – I can’t wait for her new book to come out!
Name your top 3 blogs that you must read daily.
Ohhhhh, this is a tough one. If you saw my google reader you would faint. It’s not enormous its ginormous! It scares me some days. So to narrow it down to 3 is tough so I am going to randomly choose from my top 20. Here goes:
*Made – Dana is one of my fave fellow bloggers and she so kindly was a featured “Mom in the Mommyhood” and we still email. She inspires me and I love seeing what she is up to and making for herself and her kiddies.
*It would have to be a tie between Design Sponge and Decor 8 for this slot. I love crafts but man do I love some yummy eye candy and design goodies galore. These two blogs are sure to keep you daydreaming of homes you wished you lived in, decorating projects, diy and lovely photography.
*My Mamma Made It – The first time I spotted Alexis’s blog I knew she had something special and had to write about her. Since then she continues to astound me with how she can possibly sew & post pretty much a tutorial a day, and still take care of 3, yes 3, very young children! She amazes me and I can’t help but check her blog out daily.
What does the future hold for luvinthemommyhood? And for you and your cute family?
Well I hope the future for luvinthemommyhood holds as much fun as I am having now. I truly love and enjoy working on the blog everyday. It is my baby and my business all in one. I have a lot of plans for the site – so stay tuned! Just like any neighbourhood, the mommyhood is still growing & I hope to continue to watch it do so. I would also love to one day be able to call myself a “freelance writer”, heck, let’s go out on a limb here – a “published writer” with my own book filled with my repurposing/refashioning projects.
As for my family, well we are trying to decide if we are going to add 1 more – all the fellow bloggers out there having babies has put pregnancy on my mind. Regardless, we are looking forward to lots of fun and definitely lots of laughs!
Thank you Shannon for being such a friendly neighbor. ;)
*All pictures on this post are property of luvinthemommyhood.*