Welcome to my first blog on Just Sew Helen!
If you’ve found my About page you’ll already know a little bit about my background but, in a nutshell, I’m a midwife by day and I love to sew. I’m married with 2 boys, 2 step children (now adults) and 5 step grandchildren. And, like many people, I’ve also had a run of bad times that have really been the inspiration for developing my business.
I wanted to incorporate my life time love of sewing and it was also a passion of my mum, who sadly died in 2015 from Ovarian Cancer.
I wracked my brains to think of an idea to develop that wasn’t just another run-of-the-mill sewing blog with tutorials and patterns, in an already saturated market. I also brainstormed what I am good at and know about. I found this really difficult as it's tough for most people to look at themselves & see what they’re good at & it was hard to think I would have enough interesting content that someone might actually want to read it!
After many ideas and some makes I did for friends I decided on sewing, incorporating applique and hand embroidery, initially as framed pictures in memory of a loved one. My very first picture was for a close friend whose mum died a few months after my mum from the same condition. This was a MUM Forever in my heart frame (see similar item here). I have lots of plans for other memory items to preserve loved ones’ fabric items as a keepsake.
I started playing around with business names and a trial website from Create.net and also signed up for Etsy Resolution by The Design Trust at the beginning of 2016.
And Just Sew Helen was launched, in private, with no marketing or promotion other than the closed Facebook group Etsy Resolution 2016. It has taken over 6 months to finally narrow down my niche and interests and a mass of self-learning about online business development.
With my background in Midwifery, caring & supporting families during pregnancy loss for over 20 years, I have gained a lot of experience, and similarly with life itself. I wanted to expand on this & offer a service that can help others to support their friends and family through difficult times, in particular around bereavement. I’m not currently in a position to provide a counselling service and & don’t feel this is the right direction for me but recognise that a large proportion of valuable support is given by friends and family and hope to offer comfort with the gifts that I design and create.
This is my Mission Statement that has evolved over time –
The foundation of my business is the creation of simple, personal & unique textile memory gifts in remembrance of loved ones & to help bridge the gap between loss & offering sympathy or condolences that many find hard to express, all of which can have an impact on emotional wellbeing.
Having worked with pregnancy loss/bereavement for many years as a midwife I am developing exclusive & unique baby loss keepsakes.
I pledge to make regular, personal donations to Ovarian Cancer.
Over the coming months I plan to provide information over a number of categories including A Handcrafted Business, Sewing & Embroidery & Women’s Health. It’s a bit eclectic but they’re all topics close to my heart and I have some knowledge on and hope to incorporate the topics on my site.
Thank you for taking the time to read this post – I have lots of plans for the future.
See you soon x