Friday, May 26, 2017

Designer Spotlight-- Janelle of Emmaline Bags

Today's featured designer for the Designer Spotlight Series is the one, the only Janelle of Emmaline Bags. Last and most certianly not least! Janelle is a bag lady extrodinaire. Her resume includes: bag and hardware designer, author, craftsy instructor, blogger, bling fairy and all around bag queen. Janelle has designed many beloved patterns and continues to enable us bagineers with gorgeous high quality hardware and bling

 How long have you been sewing and what inspired you to start designing your own patterns? 
I started sewing when I was 12 years old, so I have been sewing off and on for about 33 years. I started with clothing, and then quilting, and then caught the bag making bug around 2010. I didn’t start designing my own patterns until I started bag making. So I’ve been designing bag patterns for about 7 years. 
What do you love most about your job? 
There are so many things to love about my job! I love it that I am fortunate enough to work from home. I feel very lucky that I can work from home and be creative. I guess that is two things I love most! 

What is the hardest part of the design process for you? 
For me, the hardest part of the design process is selecting fabrics that will show my design in the best light. I am horrible at picking fabrics!  

What do you enjoy doing when you aren't working? 
When I am not working, I love to be outside. I just need to get outside to walk, listen to the birds, and watch the dogs run through the bush. It brings me the peace I need to get through a very busy week. Except for when I am screaming at the dogs to come back, that is not as peaceful.
What is your favorite pizza topping?  
Ham and Pineapple!  

What is your favorite thing about bag making? 
I love bag making because of the feeling of accomplishment I get after working out a method or process. When it comes together in the end, it feels great! 

What is your least favorite part of bag making? 
I really do not enjoy cutting fabrics and fusing interfacing. Uh, what a drag!  

Is there a pattern of yours that is your favorite? 
I LOVE my Prairie Girl pattern that I designed for the Bag of the Month Club in Dec 2016. It’s going to be released soon, and I can’t wait to share it because I am truly happy with the way it turned out. I have been carrying one for a long time, and I don’t need anything else. 

What is your favorite pattern by another designer? 
I have always loved the Blanche Barrel bag by Swoon. Alicia really did a wonderful job with it and darn, she beat me to it, but I still adore her 

What is your favorite snack?
Cheese. Cheese for breakfast, lunch and dinner and all snack times. It goes with every drink I like too….  

What is your favorite piece of bag hardware?
This is not a hard question for me. When I designed the Metal Bag Labels that say “handmade” or “handcrafted”, etc., I had a desire to create a label that bragged “Handmade” but also gave bag makers a label, and a shiny focal point on their bag exteriors where something just looked missing. They really are that final touch that make a bag exterior look complete to me and they say “This is handmade and I am proud of it.” I love them 

What machine do you sew on most often?
For bag making I use my Juki TL2010Q. It’s very powerful, has a huge throat space, and has speeeeeeed!  

What advice would you give to someone who is new to bag making? 
Have FUN! Sewing is supposed to be fun, and not stressing. If you have to rip out stitches, sigh, smile to yourself, rip those stitches, and sew again. We all mess up, it’s all part of it!  

Who is your favorite fabric designer? 
There are so many fabrics and designers that I love. I can’t do that. It’s like picking a favorite child, you just can’t! 

What is the best compliment you've received as a designer?
When a customer emails me to tell me how pleased they are with themselves, and how happy and proud they are to have made something they love so much, it makes my day. I love that I am part of that feeling of accomplishment. It makes it so worthwhile.  

How organized is your sewing space? Are you a mess maker or everything in its place kind of person? 
A total disaster. I am the messiest maker. There is fabric, thread, tools, and hardware everywhere. I have to clean before I start, or push things aside to even find the table top. It really is horrible and something needs to change. Right, tomorrow I will change.  
What is your favorite color? Blue! Aqua, teal, royal, denim - all shades of blue make me feel calm and happy and not blue at all!  

What is your favorite thing to listen to while working? 
Silence. A lot of people listen to shows or watch TV, but really there is so much chatter and noise going on in my head already, that I can’t add anything to that. I need quiet.  

Is there anything you wish others knew about you or what you do?  
“I'm just a girlsitting in front of a sewing machineasking it to have consistent tension.” 
I am always trying to be funny, and I use humor to diffuse stressful situations. If there something very important to discuss, chances are I will say something stupid.  

How do you make sure that your patterns are accessible to bagineers? How do you promote your work?
I like to promote my work on my blog, newsletters, instagram and social media. Basically, I get it out there and hope that it is well received and enjoyed and it will get good reviews and be recommended.

You can connect with Emmaline on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest or Twitter . We love it when you share your projects with Emmaline patterns or Emmaline hardware! Use our hashtags when you post so we can see too: #emmalinebags, #emmalinehardware or #emmalinepatterns. 

We also have an active and helpful Facebook group for Emmaline Patterns and Hardware...we love to see how you use our hardware on ANY pattern! It's a great place to get help, ideas, share your makes or just find encouragement. 

Follow our blog here, and join our newsletter to stay up to date on announcements and new items. 

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Unknown said...

Favourite hardware and designer!!

Gina S said...

Janelle got me hooked on bags with the NCW. She is the queen of bling! The Make This Look is an awesome idea, just love it!!!!

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...

My first impression of the bag making world came from discovering Janelle! I bought her book and was so excited to follow her, eventually joining the BOMC! I love her hardware and all of the advice. Thanks Janelle!!

Anonymous said...

Robin H

I wasn't able to make a comment on Rafflecopter so here it is:
I discovered bags through Janelle's Craftsy class, which was wonderful! I also love
her hardware.

Carol Spring said...

Emmaline's hardware is fantastic as is her support for the Bag-ettes from Ujamaa Grandmas. Thank you Thank you

The Bag making world is just so supportive of each other.

Karen said...

I love Janelle's huge assortment of bag hardware. And, she's right--her little Handmade and Handcrafted tags add just the right amount of bling. Ah, yes--CHEESE! Especially if it includes a nice glass of wine as one of those drinks ;) Really enjoyed the interview.

Unknown said...

I love Janelle's bags and hardware! I feel very privileged to have met her on a retreat. It was such a special time with a lovely group of ladies.

Shawna3 said...

I loved your answers Janelle, just the right amount of information!!

Carry Hers By Natalie said...

I love Janelle's patterns and her hardware.

Great interview Janelle

Carry Hers By Natalie said...

I love Janelle's patterns and her hardware.

Great interview Janelle

zeb312 said...

Awesome interview!!! So fun getting to know you more, Janelle!

AJ said...

The first bag I ever made was one of yours! The Emmaline bag ❤️

Norma's Bag Boutique said...

Thanks you for this interview. Janelle is very talented and sweet. I still remember when I finished my first NCW just hours after the pattern been released. I felt so great. The sewing community is better because of Janelle!! Thank You!!

Unknown said...

Love Janelles patterns... have only tried the NCW but trying to get the courage to try some more. also Janelle has the most fantastic customer service... i love all her bag hardware.