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TSM Influencer Spotlight, March: Kayla Smith

Beautiful and creative items come together one stitch at a time. Our March Influencer has sewn so many cool items. Her love for stripes and a vibrant print are well known. Have you guessed who it is yet? If you guessed Kayla Smith, you are correct. Kayla is grateful for friends and sewing buddies she can talk to about sewing who do not roll their eyes back at her. Probably thinking “You are talking about sewing again.” Please enjoy a little peek into Kayla Smith and her passion for sewing.

TSM: Kayla, I really want to thank you for taking time out this morning to spend some time with us. You are such a talented sewist who has an amazing presence, not only on our team, but on social media.

Kayla: Thank you! I am so happy to be on this team full of genuinely nice people.

TSM: We do have a really special team.

TSM: Before we get into the meat and potatoes of our conversation, what do you like to do in your free time?

Kayla: Does one have free time besides sewing? Ok, in my free time that I am not sewing or thinking about sewing, I am a stay-at-home mom to three teens with super busy lives that I get to be a part of. I love to travel and enjoy just watching tv with my family in my family room.

TSM: So, in your free time you think about sewing too? I don't know if anyone else has that same problem, too!

Kayla: Definitely! I am also so lucky to have sewing friends in real life, as well as online sewing friends to talk sewing with.

TSM: We are creative. We cannot help it. Especially with beautiful prints.

Kayla: Oh yes!

TSM: Besides sewing, being a busy and active stay-at-home mom, what other hobbies do you have?

Kayla: I have a few regular groups of friends that I walk with, cook, and travel as much as possible. Sometimes travel can just be to the next town over, but we are on the go quite a bit. My oldest daughter is in her college marching band and women’s basketball band. We have become huge fans of both this year! Since we live locally, we can go to all of the games. I am now always on the search for orange and blue fabric.

TSM: That sounds like a great group of local friends. Traveling even if just to next town is fun. The change of scenery helps our creative minds. You are super lucky to be able to see all the games. Blue and orange cannot be hard to find.

Kayla: For sure! I am really excited to try the new Cross Hatch prints in orange to see how that looks.

TSM: We have blue too. So, a color block hoodie or t-shirt will be in your future for sure.

Kayla: Definitely! Our local schools’ colors are also orange and blue, so it works for so many things.

TSM: Since you can now sew school colors to fill your heart’s desire, what started your love and passion for sewing?

Kayla: Great story, actually. I wanted a sewing machine when I was pregnant with my first daughter. I thought it would be so fun to make her things. Well, without modern conveniences like YouTube and Facebook and pdf patterns, even threading my machine proved to be too hard. So, she sat on a shelf. Fast forward 10 years and a really good friend who is an excellent seamstress took me to Joann’s where we picked out a basic woven skirt pattern and Elsa fabric and made our girls skirts. It was amazing and I have not stopped since! I love to do the same with others (teach them the basics) and even have a few friends that have stuck with it. I have been giving a little girl sewing lessons for the past few years and she is an amazing seamstress already. It has been so fun watch.

TSM: Wow, you are super sweet to be teaching others and providing them with an opportunity in which they may not have gotten.

Kayla: It also gives me more people to talk sewing with!

TSM: It is comforting to be able to talk sewing with others who will not get annoyed with you.

Kayla: Most definitely!!

TSM: It also allows you to learn from others, too.

Kayla: Actually, that is one of the reasons I like to pattern test. Expands my skills and allows me to talk sewing to people I would not necessarily interact with regularly.

TSM: That is a great way to look at pattern testing. I agree that it allows you to learn, challenge yourself, and acquire new techniques.

Kayla: Definitely! I have tested a few TSM patterns, and it has expanded my bag making skills. I am a total beginner when it comes to bags.

TSM: TSM has amazing bag designers, and we love that it is not only beginner friendly but the start for new bag makers. Bag-making can become addictive.

During your ten years plus of sewing what would you consider your most used tool or technique?

Kayla: Oh, good question. I would actually say I am pretty good at seam ripping!! Not sure what that says about my sewing skills- but let’s just say I have lots of practice! My favorite tool is probably my steam iron. I am a firm believer that a steam iron makes almost every homemade item look more professional.

TSM: What type of steam iron do you use? I think we all have had experience with seam ripping. Do find you are seam ripping more when you are tired or if you are moving too fast?

Kayla: My iron is nothing super fancy- it is from Costco! Yes, all of those!! It happens also when I decide to change something once I try it on.

TSM: Now this question is a little harder. What is your favorite thing to sew?

Kayla: Things I can wear every day! Like joggers and hoodies in the winter and casual dresses in the summer. I also love to sew pockets lol!

TSM: Pockets are everything!!! Kayla your hoodies and skirts are legendary.

Kayla: Yes!! Pockets and sleeves that are long enough!!

TSM: What fabric design or person brought you to TSM?

Kayla: I am not sure how I first found it- but my first purchase was from Miranda D from the TSM Buy/Sell/Trade. I bought Neon City to make a dress for my daughter to wear to a high school dance. It was also the first fabric I ever striked!! So, it is love!! I still have some left.

TSM: That is awesome. You are the master of hoodies by any chance is your favorite current pattern a hoodie?

Kayla: I have so many favorite hoodies, but my favorite hoodie right now is the Nazare hoodie from Itch to Stitch! I tested it last month and made a few during testing and after. It just has a great silhouette, finishing touches and pockets!! It also has such great attention to detail and zipper installation. It would be a great first zip up.

TSM: Awesome we cannot wait to see what this pattern looks like.

Kayla: I have two made and I am working on a third.

TSM: You have sewn so many beautiful TSM prints, was it hard to narrow it down to your favorite?

Kayla: Nope! Super easy! It is the one fabric I need more of for the summer. Don’t get me wrong there are a lot of awesome prints, but regret got me hard on this one. Good vibes.

TSM: Good vibes is such a beautiful print. It looked fantastic on you.

TSM: Since you pattern test and strike who would you say you sew for the most? Yourself? Your children?

Kayla: Definitely myself. I sew a lot of gifts. My kids love mom made pajamas but besides that they like store bought. My husband supports all I sew and though I continue to ask if he wants anything, he is happy to admire my makes. Oh, they all love when I could make cool masks back when we did that.

TSM: Before we wrap up, I think the readers would like to know if there is anything unique or unknown about you?

Kayla: I am a “retired” Registered Dietitian. I say retired because I stopped working when my daughter was born 18 years ago. It is definitely a great knowledge base to have though!

TSM: No matter how you retired, it was the best decision for you and your family! There is no reason necessary.

Kayla: For sure.

TSM: Is there anything you are looking to sew in the future that you haven't yet?

Kayla: I really want to try quilting. I need to find a friend to teach me!! Or maybe find videos on YouTube.

TSM: We probably have some quilters in the group that can provide some guidance.

How can we support you in your sewing ventures?

Kayla: Honestly, I love how supportive and inspiring the little space of TSM social media is. I look forward to sharing and being inspired when everyone is so helpful and encouraging!

TSM: That truly melts our hearts to hear you say that. We can definitely keep the space that way for you and everyone else.

TSM: Do you have social media information that we can share?

Kayla: Yes. It is @kaylasmithsews on Instagram.

TSM: Kayla, I really want to thank you for spending your evening with us. I enjoyed learning more about your sewing ten year and why you got started.

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