Welcome to Yesterday’s Thimble!

Do you live in Memphis, TN and want to learn how to sew? I’m pleased to announce that we’re open for business again! (If you asked to be notified when I started teaching again, please have patience. I’m working my way through the list.) Before you contact me, kindly read the Student FAQ, Tuition FAQ, and About Sewing Classes.

If you don’t live nearby, you might enjoy our multitude of sewing articles! If you’re looking for beginner-friendly help, check out the how-to guides in Sewing Basics.  More advanced specialized techniques can be found under Tutorials.

For a glimpse into the creative process, take a look at my Sewing Diaries. Many are for historical costuming, but there’s also home decor and crafts, modern garments, and even a few doll costumes! You might also enjoy the Articles I’ve written on a variety of topics related to sewing and costuming.

If you’re looking for sewing supplies or books, browse our Notions Shop, courtesy of Amazon.com.

There’s also my blog (below), where you’ll find sewing hints and tips, book reviews, studies of antique fashion plates, and commentaries on sewing, fashion, and historical costuming.

I strive to keep this site updated with new content, as my health permits, so check back once in awhile!

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Il Muto Ballet Costume

Il Muto Ballet CostumeSeveral years ago, I embarked on a journey to create doll-sized replicas of all the major costumes from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera. This is the sewing diary for one I just completed: the mint-green and pink Romantic-style ballet costume worn during the mock-opera “Il Muto.”

I’ve entered it in the Foundations Revealed 2017 costume competition! Only members are eligible to vote, but anyone can view the entries and leave comments. Enjoy!

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A Year of Sewing: 2016

Hobo BagLast year, I made a list of every project I’d completed during the course of the year. Since it feels like I never finish anything, I found it encouraging to see all the things I’d sewn. So, this year I’ve done the same. Here’s my list of completed projects from 2016.

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Faux-Suede Handbag Diary

When I found a gorgeous faux-suede in olive green, with copper foil accents, I knew I had to make something beautiful from it. I decided on a hobo bag!


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Steampunk Bra Challenge

CogsWhen my local sewing guild challenged each member to decorate a bra, I decided to go with a steampunk theme. The result was quite fun!


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DIY Pressing Cabinet

DIY Pressing CabinetAlong with a sewing table and cutting table, every sewing room needs a pressing station. It might be as simple as an ironing board . . . or as deluxe as a pressing cabinet, like the one I just made for myself! Take a look.


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Replicating a Costume

EpaulettesHave you ever wanted to copy a favorite costume from TV, film, or theater? Replicating an entire costume can seem overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be! In this two-part article, I’ll outline the five steps of reproducing a costume, and then demonstrate them while making a doll-sized replica of a costume from The Phantom of the Opera.


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Contact Form Fixed!

Apparently, there’s been some kind of issue with our Contact Me form. It should be fixed now, so if anyone has been trying to send me messages about taking sewing classes, please try again!

Thanks for your patience.

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Basics: Pinking Shears

Pinking ShearsPinking shears cut with a zigzag edge that resists fraying. However, there’s a trick to using them correctly. In this new article, you’ll learn when and how to use pinking shears, along with lots of tips for successful pinking.


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Sewing Hacks Mention

Sewing HacksYesterday’s Thimble was recently mentioned in a blog post by Sue of Sewing Furniture.org! Her post is called “Sewing Hacks Galore: The Best Out-of-the-Box Thinking,” and it links to several different blogs that discuss sewing hacks. She was kind enough to include a link to our article: “10 (Unconventional) Sewing Hacks,” which lists unusual items that are helpful in the sewing room.

Thanks, Sue!

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Improving Theatrical Costumes

Collar & CuffsAre you in charge of the costumes for an amateur play or musical production? It’s a daunting challenge for anyone! In this three-part series of articles, we’ll discuss all manner of tips and tricks to help you make the most of your theatrical costumes, even if you’re on a budget.


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