Penny Plueckhahn's Profile

About

Thank you for visiting my shop! Come back often, as I’m always adding new things.

Of all the crafts I could create, I love sewing the most. Growing up, both my grandmothers sewed and taught me what they knew. My Brooklyn grandmother was a milliner who was trained in Germany to make fabulous hats. When I was young she was making her living sewing ballerina costumes for dance recitals. I remember streams of little girls coming to her house with their mothers. My grandmother would measure each girl’s waist and chest, make notes, and the next day she and her helpers would create dozens of tutus with bodices that fit each girl perfectly, without a paper pattern and just from these two measurements. Bolts of colorful tulle and satin were everywhere. My job was to sit at the dining room table on a phone book and make ruffles out of long strips of tulle using the ruffler attachment for her…

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  • Female
  • Born on December 23
  • Joined March 2, 2010

Favorite materials

Premium cotton fabrics, whimsical prints, sophisticated looks, and lots of rick rack

Shop

About

Thank you for visiting my shop! Come back often, as I’m always adding new things.

Of all the crafts I could create, I love sewing the most. Growing up, both my grandmothers sewed and taught me what they knew. My Brooklyn grandmother was a milliner who was trained in Germany to make fabulous hats. When I was young she was making her living sewing ballerina costumes for dance recitals. I remember streams of little girls coming to her house with their mothers. My grandmother would measure each girl’s waist and chest, make notes, and the next day she and her helpers would create dozens of tutus with bodices that fit each girl perfectly, without a paper pattern and just from these two measurements. Bolts of colorful tulle and satin were everywhere. My job was to sit at the dining room table on a phone book and make ruffles out of long strips of tulle using the ruffler attachment for her sewing machine.

My Texas grandmother was a practical sewer. She grew up in the Texas Hill Country on a hard-scrabble goat ranch in a time when everyone made most of what they wore and used around the house. She made my clothes, and also made a quilt for me using all the leftover scraps from my favorite outfits. One day she constructed a wooden quilt frame that could be raised and lowered with pulleys and installed it over the dining room table. Her friends would come over and gather around the frame, all working on the same quilt while they laughed and told stories. At the end of the day, she would raise the quilt frame back to the ceiling so we could eat dinner.

I’ve discovered that my sewing business has naturally combined what both my grandmothers taught me. I love making kitchen items because they’re practical, useful, and everyone needs them. And I enjoy working with fine cotton fabrics, trims, beautiful prints, and interesting colors. When I make aprons I can work without a pattern and mix up pockets, ruffles, trims, and fabrics until I get the look I want.

My grandmothers would be proud.

In addition to Etsy, I sell at festivals and arts and crafts shows in Texas and Oklahoma. It’s fun to meet people who admire and appreciate my work, and if you ever see my Gift Garden banner at a show (it’s the same as the banner on my Etsy home page) please stop and introduce yourself. I’ve gotten some of my best product ideas from customers so please let me know if there are other items I could make from these beautiful fabrics.

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