Friday, March 9, 2012

Needle & Thread Interview - Jess from Craftiness is Not Optional

Welcome to the Needle & Thread Interviews! This is the first in a series where I am interviewing my favourite crafty people who have inspired my sewing with their talents and beautiful work with the needle and thread.

To kick off the series, who better than Jess from Craftiness is not Optional? Her fabulous blog is one of the first I started following. It is a brilliant resource for anyone who sews, with numerous sewing tutorials, craft ideas, party ideas and other great stuff. Jess' writing style always keeps me laughing and her projects are fantastic for beginners. What's not to love? Get over there, immediately. Well, read the interview - then get over there!

In Jess' own words:
My name is Jessica, but you can call me Jess...and I like a lot of things. I like to blog. (over on Craftiness is not Optional) I like to create! I like to sew. Well, that's an understatement. ;)  My favorite things to sew are clothes for my kiddos! I'm mostly self-taught and love to figure out how things are made. I have two adorable daughters, Sadie and Charlotte-and an awesome hubby who puts up with patiently supports my crafting/sewing impulses. We live in northern California and love it! I love watching TV and movies-especially while sewing-two birds with one stone and all that. I love making tutorials. I love taking pictures and learning to use my camera. I love chocolate. and french fries. I love to sing-but only in the car, with only my kids present, thankyaverymuch. I love to pay bills. (not! just making sure you're paying attention!) I love the color turquoise and am addicted to Pinterest and all things polka dotted.

 Is sewing a hobby you have had since you were young or has it been something you have come to as an adult?
Sewing was always something I've been exposed mom made a lot of our clothes growing up, and made most of my formal dresses in high school as well...but I didn't always like to sew. My mom tried to teach me when I was a teen-and that always ended up in some kind of argument, and tears of frustration from me. (I'm not a very patient person....working on that!) Fast forward to when I was awaiting the arrival of my first daughter. I wanted to make her a baby blanket-something mama-made...and the rest is history. I was hooked!

Is/was your paid job or educational background creative?
I went to school to be a massage therapist, sooo....not really.

What types of projects do you enjoy creating the most?
Sewing clothing, making jewelry, and paper crafts are my favorites at the moment!

What are your favourite sewing tools and materials?
I could not sew without my rotary cutter, mat, and serger! (and of course...fabric!)

Jess' Crafty Space

Who or what are your main sewing inspirations?
When I first discovered sewing blogs, these gals were tops to me! Dana from Made, and Jill from Homemade by Jill. My more recent places to find inspiration are Pinterest, and crafty round up sites.

How do you balance your sewing and blogging with your ‘real life’ eg. Paid work, family?
Good question. I think everyone would agree it's a struggle. I try and limit my crafting/sewing time to when my girls are asleep, but also I try and include my oldest daughter, who is 3, in some of my crafting...for example, right now she's cutting some paper to shreds. Not really creative, but she's having a blast!

Apart from sewing, what other creative pursuits do you enjoy?
I love making jewelry, photography, baking yummy treats, and then eating said yummy treats.

Thanks so much for being my first interviewee Jess! Its so great to get to know a bit more about you and what inspires your beautiful creations!

You can find Jess here:
Blog: Craftiness Is Not Optional

*All images provided by Jess and published with her permission. 

If you enjoyed this interview, you are welcome to follow me via GFC, Bloglovin, RSS, Facebook, Twitter or subscribe by email (all buttons are on my sidebar), so you can continue to enjoy the interview series which will be published each Friday. Thanks for reading!


  1. how fun to hear more about Jess! i'm a big fan of her blog :)

  2. Great interview. I loved hearing Jess' answers and seeing her craft space. Makes me feel all crafty! Thanks for this!

  3. This is fabulous, I love it! Great to read Jess's answers, she is such a talent, so inspiring!!! Am excited to see who's next!

  4. Awesome interview, love her blog, she is so talented! What a great family photo!!!

  5. I love Jessica's crafts! She's so good at balancing her life for sewing, blogging and spending time with her family. I'm happy we were exposed to sewing the same way.


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