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RIP, Nancy Zieman

Nancy Zieman, sewing instructor and host of the public television series “Sewing with Nancy” for over 30 years, has passed away.

When I began sewing six years ago, I stumbled across an episode of “Sewing with Nancy” on TV. She was sewing from “A” to “Z”, one basic sewing technique after another.  Anchor Cloth, Basting, Cutting, Double Needles, all the way to Zippers.

It was like the heavens opened. Nancy not only showed me basic skills I needed to learn, but also things I didn’t know I needed to learn.  I bought the book and DVD and several more since.  I still use techniques such as her method for inserting an invisible zipper, and her “absolute easiest” way to sew darts – which I just used for a class project.

And then I read her amazing story.  Nancy Zieman wasn’t just a successful entrepreneur, instructor, and television personality.  She was all of those things against a backdrop of health issues, some very visible, her entire life.

From her autobiography, Seams Unlikely:

On Sunday afternoon, December 12, 1982, I was feeding Teddy when the phone rang. It was David Larson, the one producing Sewing With Nancy.

“This arrangement isn’t working for me,” he said by way of announcing an end to our television production. He was pulling out. “Go ahead and do it yourself,” he said.

We had recorded only eleven programs. Dave did it all, both production and editing. The production and editing crews worked under contract to him. The contract with the Satellite Program Network held his signature, not mine. Without him I felt there could be no Sewing With Nancy, and if it wasn’t profitable for Dave, how could it be for me. That was it. My television career was over.

A couple of nights later I awakened in the middle of the night in a sweat, something that had never happened before. As I bolted upright in bed, the thought came to me and wouldn’t leave: ‘If you don’t do this now, you will never have another opportunity.’

In the morning I began making phone calls to see if I could produce Sewing With Nancy on my own.

Goodbye, Nancy. You are an inspiration and you will be missed.


Quote source: Zieman, Nancy. Seams Unlikely: The Inspiring True Life Story of Nancy Zieman. Glass Road Media. Kindle Edition.

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A Shiny New Home on the Internet

Dear Readers,

Behind the scenes I’ve done some major renovation, and part of the upgrade is that Line of Selvage now has a new internet address!

For now, the old blog address will continue to work.  But please, at your earliest convenience, update your bookmarks and RSS readers to use the new address:

Update: If you are reading this blog via Bloglovin’, I’ve updated the address there for you already, so you don’t need to do anything.

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Two developments have led to this upgrade.

First, I’ve been having issues with my old Internet hosting provider, so I have decided to move the blog to a new hosting service.  Second, a new internet top-level domain called “.blog” is now available. It is an alternative to the familiar (and widely misused) “.com”.  So, I have moved over to the new address.

The address change is something I have wanted to do for a while. I originally created the blog under the “” domain, which I already owned for my computer software development work.  The new .blog address gives Line Of Selvage an identity separate from my computer work, so I can return “” to its original purpose.

As an added benefit, the new hosting provider seems to have faster servers than the old, so pages should load faster.

If you run into any issues with the blog, please leave a comment below, send me an email or use the Contact page.


A New Sewing Studio in San Francisco

As I suspected from the outset, my Holiday Shirt is not going to be ready in time for the holidays, for sure.  I don’t even have the wearable muslin done yet.

I have been through about three muslins now, and I’m learning more about the art of fitting a bodice piece to myself.  But I haven’t even gotten to fitting the sleeves yet.

I plan to write a detailed post about my fitting experience soon.  In the meantime, I have several developments to discuss.

Sips N Sews

A sewing studio has recently opened in San Francisco.  This weekend, I dropped by to visit as part of a SF Bay Area Sewists event.

Called Sips N Sews, it bills itself as a “personal sewing studio”.  Membership is sold on a monthly basis and gets you access to a brightly lit, well-equipped workspace well-stocked with machines and sewing notions.

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More odds and ends, and the center of controversy

More Google Reader followup

I have included some buttons along the right-hand side to subscribe to Line of Selvage through various blog readers.  I had included The Old Reader based on some reader feedback, but it seems The Old Reader is getting too many users and doesn’t want all the attention.  So, since they don’t want people to use their service, I’ve pulled the link.

Sewing for Men and Boys

One thing I forgot to mention in my first “odds and ends” post is that my copy of “Sewing for Men and Boys” arrived from Alibris.

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