Hello there Sewing With Boys readers! I’m Maegen from Mae & K, and I’m so excited to be here today. The SWB blog and facebook group is a community I’m really loving already, and I’m so honored that Addie contacted me for an interview.
How long have you been sewing?
I honestly can’t remember when I first learned to sew. I do remember my first solo project, a simple quilt, I was about 12 and I listened to a book called Bat 6 while I cut and laid out the blocks. My sister uses the quilt now, and I love seeing it in her room.
As for sewing clothing, after my oldest was born I really wanted to sew things for him to wear. I had a ton of failed projects the first few months, but it didn’t deter me at all.
However, practice makes perfect, right? I got better at sewing with everything I made, and a lot of things have been passed down to child number two.
Mischief Managed Tee
How many boys do you sew for? How old are they? (Husbands count!)
I mainly sew for my two little guys, Mack (3) and Baden (1). I did make my husband a capote, and hopefully soon I’ll get brave enough to sew more for him.
What is your favorite item you have sewn for your boy/boys?
Now that is a hard question! My Mack the Knife outfit was my absolute favorite, until I pulled it out for Baden to wear. Oh, there were so many mistakes! I still love the style though.
Baden in the Mack the Knife outfit
Mack has a Knight Hoodie he just loves to wear, and a “shake it off” shirt he loves as well. The excitement he has about wearing those probably make them my current favorites.
What do you think are the biggest obstacles in sewing for boys?
It’s just more difficult. I was watching season 4 of Project Runway All-Stars, and they had a challenge where some of them had to do menswear, you would not believe the negative reactions! I was honestly shocked and appalled.
I think the intricacy of sewing for boys is one of the appeals for me. Anyone can sit down and whip out a rectangle skirt with an elastic waistband, but it takes more time to make even something simple for a boy, which is why I think most people shy away from it. Or they think it’s boring, or not as cute. Sewing for boys is definitely not boring, and it is definitely just as cute! A simple tee can be decorated a million ways with stencils. I have a few on my site you can download free.
For those of you that haven’t ever done freezer paper stenciling, I have a tutorial from when I made this Captain America shirt.
Where is your favorite place to buy fabric for boys?
I order from fabric.com pretty frequently, but most of my fabric is repurposed from clothing. So I love to “shop” my husband’s closet, and thrift stores. Almost everything I make has some thrifted elements. I have a plaid jersey sheet I’ve made a ton of different things with.
Nathan’s old high school practice jersey got a new life.
Who are you favorite boy pattern designers?
I don’t really have a favorite. I have several basic patterns, and I’m learning to draft patterns myself. Hopefully sometime soon I’ll have a little collection of awesome boy patterns.
What are your favorite sewing with boy resource(blog, books, etc)?
Well obviously Sewing With Boys is awesome! There are some neat facebook groups as well. Amy from Friends Stitched Together does a lot of great boy sewing, with tons of fun details. There’s really a great community out there.
Do you sew with the boys in your life? If so, what do you make with them?
Not yet, haha. Mostly right now their involvement with my sewing is, “DON”T TOUCH THAT!” in reference to my ginghers, my serger, the iron, etc. Though sometimes Mack will sit on my lap while I sew. It makes everything take longer, but I like letting him spend the time with me.
Mack also gets to make requests for fabric and gives me ideas of what to make. He loves Darth Vader, and that inspired this tee.
Dark Side Tee
Why do you think it is important to teach boys to sew?
A friend of mine has an older brother who once tried to reattach a button to a nice dress shirt with an iron… ‘nuff said! Even if it’s just a basic knowledge, boys need to know how to sew every bit as much as girls do. My husband has a basic knowledge, and has expressed an interest in learning more, which makes me really happy!
What would you like to see more of in the Boy Sewing world? (patterns, tutorials, fabric, etc)
More fabrics for sure! I mean, more of everything, but I feel like more patterns and tutorials are already in the works from some of the awesome boy sewing bloggers. But I’d truly love to see more boy fabrics. I have a thing for plaids and stripes, you can never have too many options! I’d also love to see more superhero fabric, so I don’t have to make my own, haha.
Captain America Jammies
How do you challenge yourself to break gender stereotypes when sewing for your boy(s)?
I just recently made Mack a “Shake it Off” inspired shirt, and a pink tie. I am pretty conservative, so you won’t be seeing my boys in dresses, but I don’t let gender stereotypes stop me if I get an idea I like.
Boys Can Wear Pink
What (or who) inspires your boy sewing?
I find inspiration everywhere. Sometimes a particular pattern speaks, sometimes I find things on pinterest I love. Sometimes fabrics demand to be made into certain items, and sometimes I get requests. And there are so many great challenges out there. CraftingCon is so much fun, and I love participating in other blog tours.
This Spring Break outfit started with a pair of shoes.
My Boy Sewing inspiration board is full, full, full of pea coats and jackets.
Thrifted Wool Pea Coat
Tell us a bit about your favorite boy(s)!
Mack is a really fun kid. He loves to play cars, have dance parties and snuggle on your lap to read a big pile of books.
Baden, aka Ziggity Pants, is our mischevious monster. He gets into everything, and we have to keep the front door locked or he will be three houses down before you realize he’s gone. And he loves his rabbit.
My husband loves to hunt and fish, and that definitely inspires my boy sewing style. He’s also big into scouting, and camping, two more big inspirations for me.
Tell us about your blog and what inspired you to start it.
I first started blogging when I was 16, just random things. After I had Mack my sister-in-law Karen told me about a blog she liked to read called No Big Dill. From there I discovered a huge world of inspiration for sewing, and I started sewing along with Project Run & Play, and really getting involved in the larger blogging world.
Last March Karen and I launched Mae & K. We blog mostly about our crafting adventures. I currently have Monday set aside for CraftingCon guest posts, and we have a weekly Free Pattern Friday post.
Launching the new blog inspired me to put a lot of my ideas into action. I mentioned my idea for CraftingCon on Facebook and got an awesome response from Amy and Tasha so we partnered up. That has been an amazing experience. I can’t believe it’s been nearly a year!
I’m a Keeper Jammies
Blogging keeps me from having a clean house, but it gives me a wonderful creative outlet. Not to mention all the new things I’ve learned; blogging forces me to expand my knowledge of writing, sewing, photography and computer code. I’ve made a ton of great “blogging friends,” and had such a wonderful experience blogging.
Thanks so much Addie, Amy, Jonie, and Nichole for having me here today! It was a lot of fun to do the interview. I love the Sewing With Boys website, and I know it will be a fabulous source of inspiration for people sewing for their boys!