Welcome to our second blog of the month for Meet The Maker! Today, we'd love for you to meet Olivia Leger and her beautiful daughter. They are no doubt familiar faces - we are always so inspired by her really sweet and gorgeous makes. You can follow more of her work on Instagram at @nenengchildrenclothing.
Tell us a little bit about yourself...
I am originally from the Philippines. To pursue my mother's dream for me (to work as a USRN), I moved to United States where I met my husband. We are blessed with two beautiful energetic children, and he is super supportive of my sewing pursuits. I'm a full-time working mom with other side jobs because I find it hard to say "no". I love to eat RICE three times a day. Other than sewing, I also love fishing, crabbing, camping, travelling, photography and spend most of my time with my family, friends and church family.
How did you learn to sew and when?
I've been making clothes for my dolls since I was a young child. I learnt to sew by hand when I was 9 years old while watching my grandma. I then learnt to use my aunt's antique treadle sewing machine. Grandma even taught me how to draft a pattern, but I never paid much attention because I hated maths 😳. I'll never forget the first garment that I drafted and sewed - I had to redo it 3 times (it was bath robe). I've always dreamt about making beautiful clothing, however it was never to be until I gave birth to my little girl. She brought back my passion for sewing beautiful clothing. It's definitely an addicting hobby, as sewing is my therapy when I am stressed out from work.
What's your favourite type of fabric to work with?
I love knit because it's more "forgiving" and rather quick to sew. The added bonus is that my daughter loves to wear knit these days.
What's your favourite Peony make to date?
Oh this is so hard to choose. I love every pattern from Peony Patterns, but the one that is my go-to would be Wattle (knit) since it is such a quick yet stylish sew.
What are your sewing goals for this year?
My sewing goal for this year is to learn to use the different feet of my sewing machine and other functionalities of my cover stitch. In addition, I'm planning to learn how to draft a pattern!
What sewing tip have you learned along the way that you use all the time and why?
Read the instructions. If you don't, you'll end up re-doing it again! Also, if there's a sewing project that you can't figure out how to do, it's totally okay to walk away and give yourself a break. Come back to the project when your mind is clear! Another tip is to break down your sewing project into something similar to a sew-along schedule so you just sew an hour per day.
What is your biggest sewing achievement or challenge to date? Tell us about it!
I would say a transformation dress that my daughter had been wanting to wear. It took me a month and I re-did it three times! When my daughter tried on the completed dress, the BIG smile on her face made it totally worth the hard work and time!
What advice would you give to someone learning to sew?
Find your supportive network in online sewing communities such Peony Patterns! There's a lot of talented sewists in the group who are happy to answer questions or provide guidance! Something that my grandma used to say when she was still around, "If others can do it, why can't you?"