Long Time, No Hear

So it’s been a while…….In 2015 I updated or created four new patterns. This year, I worked on three new, three old but never managed to get them published. I am sure you’ve noticed that my head has been in the clouds. I will update you, for those who’ve asked, for those who just want to know what this means about the future skip to the last two paragraphs.

I started off the year with a back injury and several weeks of physical therapy. Nothing exciting happened to cause this injury, my body is just still recovering from the big surgery and I actually tweaked it lifting and twisting the vacuum. I know, LAME! Then came THAT TIME of the year, Oncology.  Fingers crossed I am in my last year of Oncology check ups. Earlier this year, near my appointment time,  it hit me hard and I had a hard time shaking it. So started a new hobby, which seems to be the norm by now as the time approaches. It keeps my mind and hands busy. This year was all forms of quilting…..EPP, FPP, modern, traditional and improve. Then fast forward to Sept. I get a common cold, we all do, the rest of my family shakes it off 3 days later……I however am still sick. It turned into a ear infection, then a chest rattle, then my BP elevated, along with my blood sugar. I saw the ENT 6-8 times, my MD, the ER twice and then was admitted. I left with a whole new crew of doctors and medicines. Here I am, day 63 and it sounds like I am breathing through tissue paper shoved down into my windpipe.

Apparently I needed another kick in the arse because the BIG C wasn’t enough. I got the memo this time! I have struggled since May of 2012 to find a new normal, without any help or guidance from the numerous specialist I see. Well lucky me, the right doctor was on call the night I was admitted. He wasn’t there about my lungs, he was there to treat my blood sugar which was sky high because of meds I was taking. I am so grateful that by chance he was assigned to me. In three short weeks my body has changed, my lungs…not so much. For four years all the begging I was doing with my specialist fell on deaf ears, pleading for help so that I could resume a healthy, active lifestyle didn’t seem to concern them. I will spare you the details but after that surgery I basically had been home-bound. Slowly I tried to do my own research and made changes to my life, slowly I saw changes. Now, under THIS Endocrinologist’s care (for a short term problem) my life has changed. Even though I can’t breathe well I’ve had more energy, I have left the house, I have been active, I have literally danced everyday but four since leaving the hospital because I am that grateful! I am off all meds, minus lung stuff and I feel like I GOT THIS! Catching a tumor before it spread was suppose to be my second chance but it left me incredibly sick for years. This is my second chance and I have to tell you, I am taking it and running!

So what does this mean for The Mean Princess, well it means that patterning won’t be my focus anymore. I will probably still release them but at this point I need to focus on me. The ones out will stay out. I will still have my digital services available because I’ve found that I LOVE the digital work, so much! I will be focusing more on giving, I have always loved my charities but now so more than ever I feel that’s where my heart is. You guys, if you’ve followed me since 2009 then you already know I fell in to this business by sewing for my daughter. Then when I got sick, patterning was easier than sewing 12 hrs a day for everyone but my family. As I grow and change, I guess so will the business.

So the Esty shop is close, the Craftsy will remain open. I am simplifying,  I have closed all the groups related to my business with the exception of the private Edits Group. Those gals, they really kill it for me. They catch my backwards sentences or skipped steps and they help me tremendously at making things beginner friendly, my weakest trait. The BEST places to find me are…. Instagram (always), Craftsy (always), Email (always), WordPress (sometimes) and my business Facebook page (sometimes).

That’s it folks! I am on a new adventure taking care of myself. I can’t tell you how much I have loved making bows for those bareheaded babies, sewing for your toddlers and providing patterns for your kiddos. I look forward to checking in time to time with something fun and see how you all are. Wishing you all the very best holiday season and thank you so much for your support over the past 7 year (10 yrs for some of you). Thanks for helping me support my family, thanks for the friendships we’ve made, thanks for sharing your families with me, I am grateful for it all. This isn’t goodbye, it’s a see you later.

xoxox Meagan aka TMP

They’ve Done it Again!

I know I say it a lot but man, my testers, they are the BOMB! They help me take all the junk in my brain and make sense of it all. They are priceless!

Ok, Grace. I can’t remember what inspired me but I remember thinking that Grace Kelly has a really sophisticated style and the original Grace I thought was that but for my little nugget.

grace.beforeandafter

On the left, that’s the original, oh my gorsh! That seems like forever ago. She was in 1st grade and liked the lace accents. Fast forward a few years (right pic) and when we revisited our ole gal Grace, she wanted mustard linen. Boy, they grow and change so fast!

IMG_7664 IMG_7649

Now for my girls and their girls………….

11949376_10156013258575068_8447565610407013939_n

This is HJ and her mama Randi Leigh are the ladies behind this dress. It reminds me of Cinderella, with the blue top, beigeish skirt and brown tights……where are the worker birds and mice?

rach.

Be still my heart…….this beauty is from handcrafted by RED. Wow. I hadn’t thought of Grace for a top or for layering but clearly I almost missed it. How adorable is this? Well done Rachel.

ash.

Look at this little sassafras! She looks like she might have been giving mama lots to work with. That little face says it all, Grace can be fun too!

11987195_1643747349217264_2439482566740069673_n  12009578_1643747322550600_5243594971985043208_n 11990466_1643747335883932_2904849294652681997_n

Grace is now for girls up to size 8/10. I really love the big button detail on this dress. I love arch on this dress, it’s everything.

12006095_10206172897896016_2521914761470471451_n

This is Addison, I think her face says it all! Her mama is the brains behind Not for Jane clothing found on Facebook here.

ellen

Last but not least is this the beautiful work of Ellen over at ellzabelle and she didn’t disappoint. She has handmade gifts in her etsy shop, grab them up!

Grace wasn’t altered much, the straps are a bit thinner but other than that only her format was altered. I am in the process of digitizing all my instructions on all of my older patterns. I wanted to try to make sure everything felt refreshed and uniform. If you have Grace and would like an update, send me your order number, it’s on me. You can buy her on Etsy or Craftsy.

xxTMP

All Hail the Testers!

So I started a new play group! It is all about having fun with different methods and mediums. Free motion embroidery, raw edge appliquéing, hand embroidery and wool felt paint. These gals blew me away, most of them were new to each method they tried. I will shut it and share!

Stitches by Laura created these 3 gals:

IMG_0204

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Miss Randi Leigh sewed up this beauty, those lips!

IMG_0203

Patricia designed this gal and a little bird told me she is now currently transforming into a doll, can’t wait to share if I get a peek! She used satin, floss, felt, beads, metallic thread and yarn! That hair has me swooning…..

IMG_0205

Lastly, well for now ( I had a few testers running behind) is from the girl behind the biz name. She tried her and at free motion and I tried both felting and raw edge appliquéing…….eyes and mouths may have been skipped.

IMG_0200This mermaid owns me! Oy! I.DIE!

IMG_9862

IMG_7542

IMG_0198

These templates are only available on Craftsy currently, mermaid here and princess here. They come in two sizes. Enjoy and please share your creations!

Meet Our Newest Addition

Bug’s Pack Pack

Bug is one of the many names for the girl who inspires me, aka The Mean Princess. When she first started school (seems like just yesterday) many years ago she called her backpack a packpack  and I just adored it. So when she saw this little beauty after school she exclaimed “PACKPACK” in her little voice she uses when she really loves something or wants something. In this case it was both. She wanted this packpack and was gonna KEEP it!

This is a super easy project, one tester had never done a drawstring and another had never sewn a bag. I was really impressed how quiet testing was, hardly any questions at all! I am not known for my super fly instructions but I have been working very intensely with a small group of editors to help me understand a beginner’s mind. This time, it was pretty much a home run! Yay! *happy dance* 

Oh, any ladies out there who want one for themselves?!?!?!?!?! Well there is an adult size too included!

Amy, my dear friend of Brownie Goose, tested my very first pattern miss Taylor. So when I found out she had some free time I held my breath and asked if she could test again……and she did! Here is Amy’s sweet Lou, she is a beauty, those little feet! Oh, and the bag, it of course has that magic that only Amy possesses.

test for meagan test for meagan 2

Before I forget, Amy called this project a SCRAP BUSTER because she was able to use scraps for the whole bag, which explains all those golden oldies in her pack!

Next up is Sarah. I just got lucky with this sweet tester, she is up for any challenge! She never disappoints!

11216380_10102733991950140_1278622444_n  11185773_10102733992005030_519741398_n

Next up is Laura, who is becoming a staple in testing! Oh and Laura gave you a look inside. It’s fully lined, has a pocket and a loop for keys or hand sanitizer.

20150513_061141  20150513_061035

Now KGG, miss Kim knocked it out of the park! This lady knows bags!

IMG_4069 IMG_4074

Oooowweee these are some pretty pack packs!

Miss Bug’s Pack Pack will be available on Etsy and Craftsy tomorrow! Hope you love her as much as we all do! xxTMP

Sew I Can Go!

It’s been super busy around the studio! I have two releases this week but let’s talk about today’s release. Sew I Can Go tote, yep, my first big bag. Long story short, I needed a bag for a trip I am going on. I needed something for more than one craft. I plan on taking my needle felting supplies, embroidery and cross stitching supplies, books, sketching pads and whatever else I may need. There was really nothing out there for me other than maybe a diaper bag. Not wanting to carry around a puffy laminated bag I set out to create something for myself.

As you can see this bag has lots of style and storage! The front features a pleat with two diagonal floating pockets, which could also zip close for more advanced/adventurous seamstresses. There’s two hidden “magazine pockets” behind the floating pockets. So if your counting, thats 4 on the front. There is also two large on the back, so together, 6 exterior pockets!

Let’s take a look inside!

Eeeks! You can see my stash! Here is just some of what I managed to get inside the TEN interior pockets plus four pin pockets that could be used for knitting needles or crochet hooks. I had embroidery two hoops, two yards of aida CS fabric, to large boxes of floss, shears, baby brush, chalk marker, erasers, six sewing threads and bobbins, a set of markers, a rotary cutter, my hand mending bag, iPhone, my favorite AMH book, a sketch pad or 3, a journal and I still had room!

My testers were amazing as usual, a new group this round. Let me share some of their works of art with you!

Isn’t this bag fab? Looks like someone is heading to the beach with this tote!

I love the boldness of the pink and black stripes created by the interior pockets. I may have to make another just so I can have a striped bag!

Sarah told me that she is sewing another one of these babies up at the moment to give as a diaper bag! Lucky mama!

This tester said that with a little quilt batting it would make an great laptop, tablet, phone and cables bag!

I can’t wait to see what you might do with the Sew I Can Go tote! Please share pictures of your projects, I’m excited to see what other adventure this bag goes on!

xxTMP

Let’s Celebrate testers!

This post is to thank my testers, they have been instrumental in getting this pattern out to you. I have been working on this since May on and off. Lots of sleepless night as creating it filled my head. There were so many ideas I spilt testing into 2 groups just to get it all done. Then two nights ago I came up with one more idea to add and rather than torture these poor ladies, I will add it as a tutorial next week. I have counted at least 14 ways to use this pattern with all the current pattern pieces and embroidery but wait……the next pattern coming up will work with this one to create even more options! Enough about that for now, lets get to the testers.

Robin from Emmy Lou was a standout, she was my first to finish and photograph giving me a quick heads up on a few errors so that I could correct them before sending out the second round. She made such a cute dress and used her machine to embroider her top rather than hand stitch. I think it’s fab!

Next standout was Nicole from Hello Sunshine. Miss Nicole not only did version one and two but she also came to the rescue when another tester was having trouble with her size and made one for her neighbor! Way to step up Nicole! She worked on 3 dress/tops & still managed to find the time to point out other flubs no one else saw. She wins the award for over        worked!

Trinh who sews for her daughters sewed that up in knit! My friend Jodi says anything that can be sewn in quilter’s cotton can be sewn in knit and Trinh proves her right. What a brave soul! Bravery award given to Trinj!

Pene who sews for family was another one who came in at the last moment and sewed that same size Nicole rescued me from. She sewed and sent pictures in 24 hrs. Both ladies were able to confirm that fit was just fine.

This is handmade from Tonia for her little one.

This is Addison modeling NOT for Jane. Heather was a invited late to the game but it doesn’t show, she did the back out version of the Edna!

One last thing though………I have a surprise I have been holding out on, not one pattern release but two!

See that, TMP is modeling the advanced Edna with her Fancy Nancy DOLL! Yep, a doll version was in the works too!

First up is Kathy who most of you know from the HDH sewing group but she also runs the Handmade Dress Haven blog. She loves sewing and testing so I put her to the test.

Last but not least by any stretch is Melanie who runs The Melmoose Co. making fab handmade dresses for doll and more! She came in last min to do NOT one but two dress in like 24 hrs! Wowzers what a star!

A final thanks again to my ladies, THANK YOU, because they really did make THESE patterns the best project yet!

You will be able to purchase both patterns tomorrow at my Etsy shop HERE! xxTMP

I’m Coming Home

I have been out to play, I have relaxed and played some more. I have really enjoyed time off. If you follow me on Instagram then you’ve seen some of my shenanigans. I played with all sort of new toys, materials, tried knitting, crochet, and fell in love with some embroidery. I quilted, I made appliqués, I even tore down a fireplace and rebuilt it. I did some kayaking, painting, yard work……I guess you could say I LIVED! I hadn’t done that in a while, sickness took that away, so did homesickness, but I sure did some living this year and I don’t plan on turning back.

So while I was playing, I still thought of work and yet again, I needed to change it up. I needed something that was mine, something that I would feel proud of. While I do feel proud of my first babies if you will, I wanted more from and for them. So I am saying goodbye to most. As I looked over the 25-ish I decided to only keep Taylor and Grace at this point. Taylor has been my MOST popular, Grace has been my least popular and I feel it’s because she had a zip! So I am keeping 2 gals but they will need a bit of a update like my new ladies. If you own one of the 2 I will gladly send you a updated copy with proof of purchase. The changes will be small, just using better software to make pictures cleaner, the patterns will have a box around them to insure that all printer recognize the pieces(some printers would shave off 1/4″ or so). So nothing new so to say, just cleaning them up a bit.

While speaking of change, one thing will stay the same is some of the silhouettes are same and I will reuse some name even if they don’t match up to their previous image. Why? Well when I started I was inspired by two things, the people I sewed for and the women I learned from. So there maybe a Edna, Lucy, Hazel, Louise, Jane, Ellen or Sara but they will be NEW in this life. Some silhouettes will reemerge but be very different, why? Because there isn’t really anything new, it’s just my take on a classic silhouette. My vision. My ideas mashed together. Another new item, embroidery and quilting, while not new in the world of sewing, I wanted to add something different to my creations.

So my vision……one silhouette used multiple ways, with different techniques or embellishment used. Then as I add to my collection again I want to be mindful of the techniques I use so that they are interchangeable moving forward. So Pattern “A” can be used with “B”, “C”, “D” or even my originals. I am excited about the future, I am excited about continuing to take time to PLAY, I am excited about our journey together. My newest pattern is in testers hands and it will be tested in two parts. We are shooting to reopen the shop the first week of Oct. Until then my loves!

Thanks again for all your love and support!