Today I am excited to bring you a fabulous sewist who amazingly only started sewing a short time ago….self taught too! She already has a wonderful array of bag projects under her belt as well….and is never too afraid to try to alter a pattern to suit her own needs! Way to go!! So….without further delay, it is over to you Nerissa:

When did you start to sew?

I startred sewing when I was on
maternity leave when my son was born. That was about  4 years ago. I had purchased some fabric pouches from Etsy
and thought it would be fun to try making some myself. I started on one of those mini machines, then
borrowed my mom’s machine and within a few months bought my own machine.

Who taught you to sew or are you

Self taught via online tutorials.
I am also currently take an online bag making course.

What sort of things do you like to sew?

Bags, bags, bags.. lol.   I started sewing small zippered pouches and
progressed to making bigger and more
complicated bags.

Handcrafted Bag by nissaMade
Do you like to use patterns or do you
prefer to make it up as you go along?

tend to draft up my own patterns.  The
“make as you go along” doesn’t usually work out for me. I do have a stash of bought patterns, most
not used! If I do use a pattern I will usually change something or add something
in to make it suit my needs or vision.

Modified Dawn to Dusk

Nerissa’s Modified Dawn to Dusk!

Have you made something that is your
all-time favourite creation? If so, why?

Hmm.. a fish/shark zippered pouch for my
son. I created it based on a photo a friend showed me. My son, around 2 at the
time, loved it and carried it everywhere for about 6 months.

Shark pouch by NissaMade

Shark Pouch!

Do you have a favourite fabric type you
prefer to work with? Favourite Fabric line or fabric designer?

Right now I’m trying to learn about
working with faux leather and eventually want to move onto leather. I also like using sturdier home décor fabric
for my bags.

Bag by nissaMade

Any sewing secrets you would like to

Hmm, not really.. I’m a newer sewist so
am still learning.  However  one thing I have learnt is sometimes things
like tape and glue are very useful sewing tools. Oh and a walking foot is my best friend.

What type of machine/s do you have?

I have a basic Kenmore and have recently
acquired a vintage Singer 15-91. I have
not used the vintage one yet as I just replaced the power cord and foot pedal. I still need to learn how to clean and
maintain it but I hope to have it in use soon.

Do you have any sewing goals?

I am currently doing a online bagmaking class so I hope to complete the bags in the beginnner class. It’s been about 10 months since I started and
I’ve done 6 out of 10 bags.  I also have
several bag designs in my head and a few
bought patterns I want to complete but I just have to find the time to work on them.

Another bag by nissaMade!
Any UFO’s?

I started a bag that reuses a photo
frame part. It was one of those “Make up
as you go” attempts.  It has been tossed
aside when I mis-measured parts and didn’t feeling like redoing them. I will get back to it sometime soon I hope.

When do you find time to sew?

My sewing time is sporadic. My
projects are usually spaced out over a few weeks and I’ll work on it a couple of hours every few days. I work part-time, sometimes this is in the afternoon before picking up my son from school or
late at night.

Do you have a dedicated sewing space
or room?

Right now it’s a
sewing/office/guest room that is way too small and crowded. Right now I am
working on a bag and I have my cutting mat on the floor and bag pieces all over
the bed. At times I will sew on the
dining table but I have been trying not to because of the chaos of fabric and
thread that I create. I have an ‘under
construction’ area in the basement that is sooooo close to being complete.. I am very excited about setting it up over
the next month (hopefully)!

Sewing room

“Under Construction” sewing space!

Do you have any other hobbies you like
to indulge in?

I have a Silhouette Cameo for paper cutting
which I have been having fun with recently. It is also capable of cutting
fabric so have used it for some fabric projects. I occasionally bake birthday cakes for family

Cake by Nerissa of nissaMade!

Robot Cake!
Monkey Cake by Nerissa of nissaMade

Monkey cake!

Anything about you and your family you
would like to share?

I’m married with a 4 year old son that
likes to “help” me sew. (He presses the reverse button and the foot pedal on straight seams). I also love that he asks me to make him bags
and thinks I can make anything  (which is
very far from the truth)!


Thank you Nerissa! WOW….I just have to say those cakes are AWESOME!! You can find out more about Nerissa and follow what she is up to here:


PLUS….and here is some MORE FUN – Nerissa has kindly donated a PRIZE package for one lucky reader who will receive an unopened bag pattern and all hardware for the two bags – 2 magnetic snaps and 2 D rings and a turn lock! PLUS she will ship to ANYWHERE! How awesome is that! Here are some pics:

Vogue Pattern to WIN

Win this Pattern!
Hardware for 2 Bags

And this Hardware!!

Entry is simple! Just use Rafflecopter and choose how many entries you would like:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck! 🙂 (Darn it, I should be able to enter too! LOL)

Next week I am super happy to bring you an interview with a Pattern Designer that absolutely BLOWS my mind with how FAST this gal is able to turn out awesome bag patterns! I really need to learn her secrets! Or…..Maybe I am just getting old……… :0


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  1. Wow! This interviews are great! Nissa’s work is beautiful. I love how that backpack turned out. What a cool mom.
    BTW couldn’t find the rafflecopter.

  2. Well that was a fun read! It’s always so cool to hear how other sewists find time to sew and to get a peak into their sewing space!

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