Christmas Crafts with Gotta Be Homemade

You can find LInda Nance here:

Gotta Be Handmade website

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Music:                          00:04                Mmm.

Lisa:                             00:14                Hello! Stitchers, Welcome to Stitch Please the official podcast of Black Women's Stitch, the sewing group where black lives matter. I'm your host, Lisa Woolfork. I'm a fourth generation sewing enthusiast with more than 20 years of Sewing experience. I am looking forward to today's conversation. So sit back, relax and get ready to get your stitch together.

Music:                          00:53                [inaudible]

Lisa:                             00:56                Hello everybody, This is Lisa with Black Women's Stitch and I am delighted to talk with Linda Nance today of South Carolina. She is the owner- operator, mastermind behind Gotta Be Handmade and you can find out more about her beautiful products and her beautiful work on Gotta Be Handmade on Instagram as well as on her YouTube channels. Um, we are one week away from Christmas, Christmas will be actually one week from today. Um, for those of us who celebrate Christmas, this is a very exciting time. It could also be a slightly stressful time if we are concerned about getting things ready. Um, and I've been following Linda for quite a while and she has some wonderful things that she has been creating and I'm glad to have her on today. So Linda, thank you so much for joining us.

Linda:                           01:48                And thank you so much for having me.

Lisa:                             01:52                So let's get started, I want to talk more about how you got started. How did you get started in the creating Gotta Be Handmade? I know you said that before your retirement you had a business with a friend, um and you all were sewing window treatments. How did that get started?

Linda:                           02:11                Yes, I've been crafting all of my life, My very first memories, are with my mom's next door neighbor and I was looking up at her hands. She used to create the most amazing things from folded paper, and I remember her unwrapping paper and I must've been about two. And she just kept saying, just keep looking. And I was trying to hold on to her knee to stand. And when she finished opening the paper, it was an amazing snowflake. And I think I have same amazement today. So when my girlfriend and I decided to go into business, we knew it was going to be something that we created by hand. And back then in the 80s, amazing window treatments were popular and we decided to make those.

Lisa:                             03:23                And I remember I was thinking about, since this is something that you all will, if you start to follow Linda, you'll know she tells these really beautiful meditative stories, these really great lessons. And I've asked her to talk about two of my favorites, and one of them is my two favorites are Good Tools and the other one is Pausing, but can you talk a bit about Good Tools and how that relates to your custom window treatment business that you, had you said you started that business so you could like make money to buy better tools or to have more sewing stuff. Tell us about that.

Linda:                           03:59                Yes. Instead of starting the business to make money, we started the business using our hands to earn enough to purchase the top of the line equipment that we needed at the time. And at the time we were sewing and making things on our sewing machines. So we needed the top of the line shears, we need a top of the line pins. We needed top of the line needles, that type of thing that we could not afford. And that was our purpose. Every pay we purchased something, we purchased the boxes to hold our equipment, we purchase materials we purchased, um, the top of the line, things that we needed to be creative with. And I think every business needs that. Not only handmade businesses, you need the top of the line tools if you are going to produce the top of the line products. And these things are very expensive, but you can do it you can come up with ways to earn the money to purchase the things that you need for your business. And that's what we did.

Lisa:                             05:19                Do you have a favorite memory of a favorite window treatment or some type of fabric related product that you all created? I could imagine that you must have gotten into some really, amazing, creative situations because I remember, I was a kid in the 80s and my mother did a lot of sewing but she also hired friends, to do window treatments for our house. And that is a lot of work. It's not just the Sewing, it's also like the installation, and up and down a ladder, and the staple gun and the all the hardware. So do you have a favorite story or memory from working with those types materials at that time?

Linda:                           05:59                Yes, I actually do. We had a client that hired us to create the window treatments for her living room and she only had two small windows in the living room in a townhouse in Washington DC. We took her samples based on our initial contract and she hired us and we created the window treatments and while she was making her final payment, she happened to see my portfolio. We were able to purchase the boxes to carry everything that we needed and as well as the cases and everything. So when we showed up, we showed up.

Lisa:                             06:49                Ah ah ah nice! ah ah nice!

Linda:                           06:49                She happened to see my portfolio where we were doing, cartoon characters on another client's wall. And she said, do you also paint? And I explained to her, yes we did. And that clients, window treatment was something like $80. Because she only had these balances that were very simple, plus the materials. And she said, I want you to put a toy story, something from toy story on my son's wall.

Lisa:                             07:32                Okay.

Linda:                           07:32                And I said, no problem. We can do it. And in three days we took her the sample and I she paid us the $50 for the sample. The sample led to her paying us $800 to paint two characters on her son's room. From that, she hired us to do some work in her kitchen. We did a full a marble countertop on her a table that she had in her kitchen and back there then her house was like a $2 million home and we would just, we would just elated It just kept going and going. And I mean that one job was amazing and it gave, it helped we got confidence from having our tools We already had the skills, we already had the gift that God had given us in doing the work. But with the tools and with that one job, we had no fear. We were able to approach any type of client in any neighborhood.

Lisa:                             08:55                That's fantastic. I mean to start from something so simple as two valances and then to move from a son's bedroom, kid's bedroom, to a kitchen to other parts of the home. It just shows you that what you had in the beginning was already so strong.

Linda:                           09:09                Yes

Lisa:                             09:09                You know, your theory, your creativity and your talents and skills are already so strong. All you needed was the opportunity.

Linda:                           09:16                Yes

Lisa:                             09:16                And you were able to, to get that, that's fantastic. What advice would you have for someone who was just starting out in the sewing business or just starting out with Sewing period? I think that, you know, particularly people who are young folks or people who have very limited income, people can't usually start at the top of the line. They start where they can reach,

Linda:                           09:39                Yes

Lisa:                             09:39                You know? And so if you were to imagine, I think maybe I'll ask you the sewing machine question next, but any other tool but a sewing machine, what do you think is the most important thing that they should spend their money on? Not the sewing machine part, but everything else. What do you think? And then we talk about sewing machines.

Linda:                           09:57                I would think their education.

Lisa:                             09:59                Uh Oh that's interesting.

Linda:                           10:02                I had to to attend numerous classes. I have paid a lot of money through the years. Everything from making greeting cards. And when I say making greeting cards, people think construction paper, and Elmer's Glue. But I've taken classes, creating greeting cards where you actually hand in broader the design on the card I've taken of sculptor in classes, classes in clay, I mean that's far more valuable. People pay you more for what you know than what you do.

Lisa:                             10:43                That is interesting.

Linda:                           10:43                And the skill is the most important, your education is the most important. Even in the crafting industry your education is the most important. And then I would think your tools

Lisa:                             10:57                That is excellent, the idea of education and training being like the most important tool. So it's not so much about do you have great scissors? Do you have great sheers? Do you have a strong seam ripper? Do you have a lot of patients? It's about in your estimation, it's about what is your training and how do you build your skill level. No I think that's really interesting.Yeah

Linda:                           11:21                And I'm so grateful to have lived to be a senior citizen using technology because they are webinars there are you can start with YouTube, you can go to Facebook and actually meet people that are the top of the line in certain industries. And I have been surprised at the people I have been able to meet online that's some really famous people.

Lisa:                             11:55                That's right, and so that was one of the questions I did have about, I think that sometimes when people think education or training, they think you have to go to a class at a university or go to a design school or go to you know an Institute or something that might be expensive or out of the reach for some people. But you're saying that YouTube for example----

Linda:                           12:19                Yes

Lisa:                             12:19                I know I have friends that call it YouTube university---

Linda:                           12:22                Yes

Lisa:                             12:22                Because you can learn almost anything through that-----

Linda:                           12:24                Yes

Lisa:                             12:24                And do you think that those types of trainings contribute to a person's skill set in a meaningful way?

Linda:                           12:30                Oh, yes, I do. And once you start training yourself, it will gear you to the venues and avenues you'd like to go to. I'm a crafter. Everybody that I deal with this in the industry I call handmade artists. I am not a handmade artists. I love to meet handmade artists. I love the process. I love talking with them. That's my gift, but people in the handmade industry, I called them handmade artists because crafters have a negative vibe in people's mind. But if you go on YouTube and you start watching how to create things in the creative process and all of the videos that's available, you can reach out to those people on YouTube. And I haven't had a problem with them getting back to me if they current.

Lisa:                             13:39                That's right, If they're still practicing.-----

Linda:                           13:41                Yes

Lisa:                             13:41                No, that's excellent. And I really liked that idea because I like lowering barriers for participation.

Linda:                           13:48                Yes

Lisa:                             13:48                I like this idea that anybody who has access to the internet, even if you don't have your own computer, you can go to the public library and sit down there for a couple hours with some headsets.

Linda:                           13:58                Yes

Lisa:                             13:58                And take notes and learn how to do things. And I think that, you know anything that anything we can do to dismantle this idea that this is something that's for rich people. This is something that's for the elite, I think is something that we should continue to do and continue to support.

Lisa:                             14:15                Can you talk----

Linda :                          14:16                And not only that--

Lisa:                             14:16                yes i am listening

Linda:                           14:16                Briefly for senior citizens, I would have never thought that my love, my heart from my very first memory would ever be something that I ended up doing in my lifetime. But because we have technology available to us as senior citizens, the sky is the limit. We can learn these things. We can be in business, we can meet amazing people like yourself.

Lisa:                             14:52                Well thank you and I want Can you share we talked earlier and you said something that I thought was so powerful and so important. You said something about aging and growing up and that now this was your time. Can you tell, tell us a little bit more about that you know rather than, you know after you retired and you moved from DC to more of a rural lifestyle, that it allowed you to claim something about your life that you weren't sure you were going to be able to do. Like if you were to continue working in the same way.

Linda:                           15:22                Yes.

Lisa:                             15:24                Yeah. Tell us more about that. I love that

Linda:                           15:26                My husband and I had a plumbing company that in the during the failing economy, we lost everything. We had to lay off our technicians, my husband had to lay off the office staff. Our phone just stopped ringing and during that time we had to regroup. We had to decide what to do. We were senior citizens then and we decided to go back to school. We found a course that was being offered by a very young black man teaching you social media. We learn social media, we learn how to use it, we learn how to use our computer. He forced every member of his class to get an iPhone way back there then we learn how to download apps.

Lisa:                             16:22                That's great

Linda:                           16:22                We learn how to use the iphone for the benefit of our business. Through that we learned Filmmaking and my husband created a DVD for homeowners to do their own plumbing maintenance that we sold online. After we got out of debt and after my husband retired, I said this is my time. I was equipped with computers, social media knowledge that most people my age just don't have or don't want to use or don't realize what an amazing thing being alive in this generation really is. And I decided to take that knowledge and start my Gotta Be Handmade business. And that's how I even came up with the name. There was an amazing young man in Washington DC that had a gospel radio station with Cathy Hughes. I talk with him and he said, you want to start a crafts business? And I said, yes, I do. And I said, Oh, you can give me so much advice. And he said, why in the world would you at your age like to start a crafts business? And I could feel myself getting upset. And before I knew it, I was screaming, he said, why a crafts business. And I screamed to the top of my lungs because it's "Gotta Be Handmade!" And that's how the name of my business started.

Lisa:                             18:13                That is perfect, that is just perfect. What I want to take a little pause and when we come back everybody, we're going to talk more with Linda Nance and about her Gotta Be Handmade programs, so stay tuned.

Lisa:                             18:30                Stitch Please, The Black Women's Stitch podcast talks a lot about Sewing, but if you'd like to see some of what we're discussing, we invite you to follow us on the socials on Facebook. You can find us at Stitch Please. And on Instagram you can find us at Black Women's Stitch on Instagram, you'll find a lot of great pictures and compelling social commentary. In addition, you can participate in a weekly live Instagram chat at 3:00 PM on Thursdays at Eastern standard time. So follow us on the socials, Facebook, at Stitch Please and Instagram at Black Women's Stitch and get your stitch together.

Lisa:                             19:14                Welcome back everyone. I'm talking with Linda Nance, of Gotta Be Handmade. And then this segment, we're going to talk about her program Gotta Be Handmade that interviews, creatives who do handmade art. In addition, she shares a recipe for a home remedy. That sounds like it would make an excellent holiday cocktail. Stay tuned

Lisa:                             19:52                And we're back everybody, we're back talking with Linda Nance of Gotta Be Handmade and I just love talking with her. I love the resoluteness of her spirit. I love how she is claiming her time and being a model to all of us at any age. Can you talk about some of the interviews you've had Linda? I caught the one with Stephanie of Step Stitches. Who makes those cinnamon annie dolls. And I saw you were very clever to get your order in right then and there. Cause she said she had a couple of Ornaments and I was like, Oh, so cute. And you said I want two please, I'm getting my order in right now. Tell me ----

Linda:                           20:27                That's right --

Linda:                           20:29                Well i will be contacting her this week to get my two Ornaments because one of them is my sister's Christmas gift.

Lisa:                             20:38                Perfect,Perfect, so tell me a bit about the talk you had with Stephanie and then we talk about some of the other folks that you've interviewed over the time you've had your platform.

Linda:                           20:47                I enjoy talking with Stephanie, because as a little girl I never had well, no I didn't. I had one white dolls, my mom went out of her way to make certain that I had African American dolls and I grew up with Children's Jet. I had know that was long before your time, but we had our own jet for Black Children.

Lisa:                             21:19                Wow!

Linda:                           21:20                Yes, Mr. Johnson gave us our own jet.

Lisa:                             21:25                That's a man I knew about jet magazine. I remember jet magazine, but I don't remember Jet magazine for kids.

Linda:                           21:30                Yes.

Lisa:                             21:31                That's amazing

Linda:                           21:31                We had ourown jet, and it was so nice when I met Mr. Johnson to tell him I have been a subscriber from a child. It was---- wonderful meeting him. But when she creates a doll that's not usually available to African Americans with our skin tones that reflect us, she creates, Brown raggedy hand dolls. It is amazing, they are all handmade. I am in awe of her and when I talk with a handmade Artists is just like, I am a tremendous fan. I just can't stand it. I think we are some of the most talented people in the world. There are no other people with the talents that we have from cooking. I met a man that creates Moonshine.

Lisa:                             22:31                My goodnes

Linda:                           22:31                And Moonshine is such an important part of our heritage. Like I said, I'm a senior citizen, but my dad, when he had a stroke, the thing that you had to have was Moonshine and his brother in Atlanta would bring the Moonshine to Athens. So my dad could warm it and soak his limbs in the moonshine. And that was a common practice in the African American community. You warm it, not to boil it because you needed the alcohol to help your joints. And my dad would exercise in Moonshine. So when I met this man that made the moonshine, I was telling him, did you know that the African American community used to use that for health purposes? And he wasn't aware of that.

Lisa:                             23:26                That is amazing.

Linda:                           23:26                I'm getting over a cold. There was a time when I was a little girl, you took the moonshot and you melt it the those sticks, peppermint sticks.

Lisa:                             23:38                Oh.

Linda:                           23:39                yes, and you put the melted peppermint sticks in the warm moonshine you stir it up and then you add a little bit more and Moonshine you stir it up, a little bit of sugar, a little bit of lemon, and you mix that all this stuff up and you would take a little spoonful. They even gave it to the children. So when I met a gentleman that made moonshine, I was so excited.

Lisa:                             24:07                That's fantastic

Linda:                           24:07                I think my age helps me with the artists that i meet I'm a tremendous fan of everything handmade.

Lisa:                             24:16                And you have done, well, first of all, I have to just pause and say, I am completely taking notes on this recipe because I totally plan on making this, not for a cold remedy, but for a holiday cocktail. So my family coming to visit and I'm pretty sure the little moonshine peppermint stick, a little sugar, squeeze of lemon, maybe throw some honey in there and that's going to be delicious. And I'll just tell my----

Linda:                           24:40                In the Atlanta area, you know you can buy the Moonshine in liquor stores now.

Lisa:                             24:46                That's right, Well I'm in Virginia, but I think that we have some local people that make it here too. And I think--- that the local stores have it. So either way the Moonshine will be found, it will be found and it will be consumed for our holiday beverage.

Linda:                           25:00                There you go.

Lisa:                             25:00                Yes, so that it's preventative.----

Linda:                           25:02                That's right

Lisa:                             25:02                It's a preventative measure so that nobody gets sick. I don't ---want my family to get sick over the holiday is moonshine for everyone.

Linda:                           25:12                That's it

Lisa:                             25:12                So can we talk about, I want to talk about one of the ,one of the first videos I saw that you had made was you were sitting out on your porch, and you're at your house in South Carolina home, and you were talking about pausing, and your voice was so calming. It was so relaxing. And I think I might've even heard birds twinkling in the background. It was such a beautiful story. Tell me about why you created that story and what you think the benefit is of, taking a pause to just you know, to not do something crafters are always so busy. Sewers are always so busy trying to do things, do things, do things, but sometimes you need to not do things. So tell us, tell us more about what it means to take a pause.

Linda:                           25:56                Yes, that's in my vlog series. Skyscrapers and Roosters on my website Gotta Be Handmade.com the way that this started, I have a friend who has a daughter and she said the daughter didn't have any mother wit. And she said, Linda, I want you every time you come on to give my daughter some sort of wisdom. And I said, Oh my goodness, what in the world could I do to do that? And there's how that series started. The pausing series a is only one in the series. The pausing I learned when my husband and I relocated to the rural area in South Carolina. I'm a city girl. I grew up in Atlanta and Athens and Washington DC, Washington DC was my parent's home. My sister was born there, my sister still lives there and my mom was a school teacher and my dad in Atlanta. So we had a house in Atlanta and a house in Athens. I'm a city girl all the way I don't like the country at all. So I combined that love hate relationship in my blog. That is Skyscrapers and Roosters. And I learned pausing only recently after we moved to the South. To me they are calm, they are slow, a lot of things don't matter to them, which is irritating to me. But that's the pausing, I learned it so I shared it on this so other people could learn it as well.

Lisa:                             28:01                I think that's an important meditation, just to take the time. I think it's so it becomes sometimes we get so caught up like we think our lives are some type of like, you know, hamster wheel and then we have to constantly be in motion or nothing matters but I think it does. Sometimes we are forced to take a pause.

Linda:                           28:21                Yes

Lisa:                             28:21                You know when something terrible happens. But we can also, I think we're better served by choosing to, take a pause and to take a break and to just think, you know, -----

Linda:                           28:34                Just think!

Lisa:                             28:34                it doesn't mean that you just think, it doesn't mean that you're giving up. It doesn't mean that you're not going to do what you're going to do anyway. But, you know, I don't think, you know pausing for a little while before you do something is going to, you know, is ever going to be a bad thing, you know. I think that we think that so many things are time sensitive when they're really not.

Lisa:                             28:55                And so I really love that about the series.

Linda:                           28:58                Yes

Lisa:                             28:58                I want to hear more, I think I did mean to ask you the question about the sewing machine, and I know you said that we're talking about tools earlier. Do you have advice in addition to the education? I love the answer to that question, but we have a lot of new sewists who might be listening, and want to build a good sewing practice, a good sewing habit. We had our holiday gift guide episode last week where I talked about some things that would be useful for new and experienced sewest to have, what is your approach to sewing machines and kind of acquiring a good strong sewing machine? Are you of the opinion to just get what you can afford and maybe upgrade? Are you of the opinion to maybe get a used machine or something at Goodwill and then build up? Like what is your, like what would be your advice based on all the experience you've had with Sewing?

Linda :                          29:56                I would think if it would be two different pieces of advice. When I was about nine, I got my very first sewing machine, because my mom thought I would break her machine. And she said okay, when school is out we're going to go and get you your own sewing machine. In my mind, I thought it was going to be a toy machine. And she took me to the sewing center and asked the man for the strongest machine, a machine that I could not break a machine that would need the least amount, see back there then you had to oil the machine had take the machine in, to be serviced the least amount of service. And my mom set up a payment plan and bought my very first Sewing Machine, which is a Sewing Machine that I had until about 15 months ago---

Lisa:                             31:04                Wow!

Linda:                           31:04                Still working, so I am still into buy the best that you can buy at the time, and find a way to get the best. Now, the best may not be any electronic sewing machine that's thousands of dollars.

Lisa:                             31:25                Right! That's right.

Linda:                           31:26                Once again, you have to get educated. My mom went to a professional and asked him what machine that was and at the time my machine was a German made machine that, I can't think of the name of it now, but it was not a popular brand, that this gentleman recommended and it wasn't that expensive. So once again, you need to educate yourself, and once you get educated, I'm sure you can't afford it. A good sewing machine and that machine will last. You am using my mom's Sewing Machine now and my mom's Sewing Machine was purchased in 1919.

Lisa:                             32:10                Wow! 1919

Linda :                          32:13                [inaudible]

Lisa:                             32:14                And you're still using it right now?

Linda:                           32:16                I'm using it right now.

Lisa:                             32:19                That is incredible, and I think that that is one of the challenges, I think of today. We often hear this complaint and I do think it's true, that a lot of the machines that were built, you know, back in that day were stronger and more reliable and built to last. And some of the machines we have now just seem they have more plastic parts. They have more maybe more computerized settings but not the sturdy mechanical workings that make them, you know, last forever. And I feel like that we have so much unfortunately of this disposal,-----

Linda:                           32:55                Yes

Lisa:                             32:55                you know, this disposable idea like okay, I'll have this for a while then get rid of it and then get another one. Um, and I feel like, you know I love that idea of having a machine that is like almost a hundred years old. Is that not a hundred I'm terrible at math. No, but that's right, that is like a hundred that's incrediable, thats really a beautiful story. And it's doing what you need it to do,----

Linda:                           33:19                ----Yes

Lisa:                             33:19                --and so it's working. That is very impressive. Yeah [crostalk] I feel like--- please do

Linda :                          33:25                I had business embroidering custom Christmas stockings, years ago to earn my Christmas money. And when they all started offering the embroider machines to homemakers.

Lisa:                             33:47                Mmm

Linda:                           33:47                I went to purchase one, but I went to a small business to purchase my embroidery machine and I met the owner of the business, and explained to him what I wanted to do, what I was doing, I didn't have money, my husband and I had a business, Everything goes in the business.

Lisa:                             34:12                Right

Linda:                           34:12                And I developed a friendship with him. So when he had sales, when he had something for me, he would contact me and I was able to get a good deal on my embroidery machine.

Lisa:                             34:26                That's right, oh It's because you had a relationship, you know, Oh and I think---

Linda:                           34:29                ----Because I had a relationship.

Lisa:                             34:30                And I think that is definitely important. That is one of the things that I give advice to new sewest you can buy a machine off Amazon, you can buy machine at Walmart. But one of the things about buying machine and from a dealer is that ideally, you build a good relationship,---[crosstalk] and that person wants to, they want to support you and they want you to be happy because if you are happy, then you'll come back and you know, buy more things from them and so I think ideally that is a really good method.

Lisa:                             35:04                You're listening to a Christmas crafts edition of the Stitch Please Podcast. I'm talking with Linda Nance of Gotta Be Handmade, up next a little lesson in Pine Cone Anatomy, as Linda uses these found objects to create beautiful natural creations.

Linda:                           35:27                Yes

Lisa:                             35:27                Let's talk about your Ornaments. And so before we get there, I want I'm hoping that everyone and maybe I can use this photograph as part of the podcast, you did that gorgeous portrait of this woman and you used the South Carolina Pine Cone for her hair. Do you remember that?

Linda:                           35:47                Yes!

Lisa:                             35:47                Oh my! Oh! That was so beautiful, and so actually I had never seen anyone do use a Pine Cone that way. And so can you talk a bit about what motivated you to do that and then let's talk about your Pine Cone Ornaments.

Linda:                           36:03                You know, I think I'm a bit of a show off, and I had to redevelop myself. I felt like I was getting in a rut and I told my husband I have to become something else and need to add to my list of what I am. And I was driving around in the rural area where in hating it as usual. And I looked down and it had Pine Cones everywhere. I said, I wonder what are these called? Then what type of tree these are from and why some looked different? And I started studying Pine Cone, and I went to the mayor of our town and I said, where can I get beautiful large Pine Cones? He said, what type are you looking for? Lalobby? And I said, yes I am. He said, "Do you know, Lalobby, Mrs. Nance?"I said, I've been studying Pine Cone, and we got into a conversation and he said, why do you want these Pine Cones? You don't know anything about picking Pine Cone. I said, because I am the top Pine Cone artist in South Carolina.

Lisa:                             37:18                So there!

Linda:                           37:19                There it is, I had to develop ways to use Pine Cone and those things that you are talking about, I use for the ladies hair. Those are called Scone. The Scones on the Pine Cone is what we see the prickly things that stand out to make the decorative Pine Cone. When you remove all of those, you are left with the seed to the Pine Cone tree. I thought the black woman needed those as her hair because you know, we are the seed to humanity.

Lisa:                             37:58                This is true.

Linda:                           37:59                Uhm, hmm.

Lisa:                             38:00                That's beautiful, let's end with talking about your Pine Cone Ornaments with a story that's such, I really love how you, and again, I'm asking everyone to again check out her page. And we'll ask you to tell you us more about how people can get in touch with you and find your wonderful works. But she has these gorgeous Ornaments that she's made and then she's also created stories about them, I think Blitzen----

Linda:                           38:27                ---Yes

Lisa:                             38:27                Might be one of my favorite stories of the series. How you said Blitzen is very dapper and he's the most dapper of all the rain day or he likes to be blinged out. How did you come up with that relationship between creating the Ornaments and then adding a story to go with them?

Linda:                           38:45                Well, I had to take my own Ornaments and do something super special that I had never heard anyone else doing, though there's nothing new under the sun. And I said, I know I can take the Christmas stories and use those as the backdrop for the stories, for my super special Ornaments. And that's what I have started doing each Ornaments that I make is one of the kind it's only one. And when you purchase the ornament, you purchase the story that I have made with it and the Blitzen Ornaments simply because it says Blitzen. It sounds like he could have been someone that was Bespoke and following Steve Harvey's wife used to have a blog and a website that offered us Bespoke training. So for my senior citizen husband, we could learn about what men should wear, the type of Jewelry, the type of cologne, what you should look like when you go into a special meal. And it was something lady, but you know, Steve Harvey's wife.

Lisa:                             39:59                Okay

Linda:                           39:59                And Blitzen, just sounds like Bespoke, it just sounds like he was dappling well dressed and I made up the story with Blitzen with being a Bespoke love dressing and taking photographs with the visitors to Christmas VO's. And he has an Ornament that's all blinged out with Savar Ski crystals that can hang around his leg and he can stick that leg out when he's taken a photograph with visitors in Christmas meal.

Lisa:                             40:34                That's really delightful, it has been a real treat to speak with you today Linda. I really am grateful for and it's a nice way to head into the holidays for those of us who celebrate Christmas.We'll be doing that next week. Tell folks how they can find you. I will be sure to include this information in the show notes, but talk a little bit about like where people can find you.

Linda:                           40:57                Gotta Be Handmade everywhere. I'm on Twitter, I'm on Facebook, I'm on Instagram and I have Gotta Be Handmade.com so please subscribe to my YouTube channel, which is Gotta Be Handmade and you can contact me at any of those places.

Lisa:                             41:17                This has been a delight, thank you so much for talking with us today and I wish you a happy Christmas.

Linda:                           41:25                Same to you and keep on going, keep on giving and keep on growing and I love your podcast. I'm a fan!

Lisa:                             41:35                Thank you so much, thank you, all right, take care. Have a good day.

Linda:                           41:41                Bye, bye.

Lisa:                             41:46                I hope you enjoyed that conversation with Linda Nance as much as I did. It was a real delight to hear how she has in lived, this creative life for a really long time with memories as a young girl, from her earliest memories to now in retirement, being able to live a life on, live a creative life on her own terms. And that I believe is indeed a lesson for us all.

Lisa:                             42:17                Tune in next week for a very special episode of the Stitch Please Podcast, which will be a Christmas key key with Lisa, who's is me, my mother, and my two sisters. As we talk about Christmas Sewing Christmas memories with my mother and us as girls and what we remember, what we finally confessed to after all these years and figure out which one of us is really above it all when it comes to presence. Spoiler alert, it is not me. I am not above it all and I do still like presence, but some of us do not. So do stay tuned and I hope that you can tune into the Podcast on Christmas day.

Lisa:                             43:03                Thank you for joining us for this week's episode of the Stitch Please podcast, the official podcast of Black Women's Stitch, the sewing group where Black lives matter. There are a variety of ways that you can support the program and you're doing it right now, by listening to the Podcast. It does help us grow another way to do that is to rate the podcast, review it, subscribe to it. All of these things are ways that you can support the podcast without having to spend any money at all. If you would like to spend some money to support us, there are ways to do that as well. You can make direct donations to our patreon site for monthly contributions as well as one time contributions to PayPal, Cash app or Venmo. And finally we have another cute, very adorable way for you to support the Black Women's Stitch project.

Lisa:                             43:54                It's a Pin, a P I N Enamel lapel Pin. That's very cute. It's about two inches wide and one and a half inch tall and it's of the Black Women's Stitch logo and that is $15 with free shipping to the U S and so if you drop $15 in the PayPal, Venmo or Cash app accounts and then send me your email, not email. If you send me your mailing address to my email, either @blackwomenstitch@gmail.com or you send me a direct message on the Black Women Stitch Instagram page, we will put the Pin in the mail to you. Again, free shipping, $15 for the Pin. And all of this goes to support the Black Women's Stitch project. Thank you again for joining us this week. Come back next week and we will help you get your stitch together.

Speaker 3:                    45:03                [inaudible].

Hosted by Lisa Woolfork

Lisa is a fourth-generation sewing enthusiast who learned to sew while earning a PhD in African American literature and culture. She has been sewing for more than twenty years while also teaching, researching, and publishing in Black American literature and culture.

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