About Me

Hello, I'm Diana Neill, founder of Sew Inspired, LLC and Diana's Patch. This is my story . . .

I sewed my first doll quilt when I was 7 years old (back in the 80's).  From there, I made pillows, curtains, odds and ends here and there (with help and just once in a long, long while.)  I got busy with life and didn't really sew much, nor did I have the confidence to create something truly amazing. I had an old mechanical clunky Brother sewing machine that I had purchased from a friend. It was clanky and didn't sew very well. Then in 2010 I found out about the Singer Embroidery Machines and I just had to have one. I figured I could embroider baby clothes and sell them. When I got the machine, I absolutely loved it! I fell in love with sewing. It was smooth and did an amazing job when I sewed, and the possibilities of embroidery were endless.

I wanted to learn more about sewing and using the different presser feet, so I purchased a book called The Sewing Machine Accessory Bible by Lorna Knight, along with some other of her books. Then I found a great deal on a Singer 9960 (which I absolutely LOVE), loaded with feet! I purchased it and bought some more feet that I didn't have, and started sewing like crazy. I love to sew--it's my passion. I'm very detail-oriented when I sew. I want everything I do to look professional. I posted my projects on my "Creative Mom Projects" blog (which is now www.sewinspiredllc.com). The compliments I received boosted my confidence at an all-high. I started to believe that if it could be sewn, I could make it!

I had been going to college to earn an Ultrasound Tech degree, but things got hectic, I was extremely stressed out about it, and I hardly ever had time with my kids. I came to a dead end of my career goal due to my local hospital not allowing any other colleges other than the one that they had a contract with for clinical hours.

Then one day, I received a lot of vintage Barbie sewing patterns from my aunt. I had never tried sewing Barbie clothes before because my mom and grandma always said that they were too difficult. I had been sewing clothes for Cabbage Patch Kids dolls and I didn't think they were difficult at all, so I thought I'd give Barbie clothes a try. Amazingly, they were easy to sew. I saw on eBay some auctions of handmade Barbie clothes that were going for really high--like $400. I thought about starting my own business selling handcrafted items on eBay for an income rather than pursuing my degree. The potential to earn just as much money selling things on eBay as I could as an ultrasound tech was there. I asked the question to friends and relatives,
"If you had the option of doing something you love, that makes you happy and brings you joy and also brings in a profit of about the same as if you went to college, earned a degree, and got a job that you really aren't as passionate about as you are with the first thing, what would you choose?"

So I decided to start my own business as Sew Inspired, LLC. I began selling Barbie clothes on eBay and had a lot of fun with them. My very first outfit I sold can be found here.

I also have had a blog that I posted Cabbage Patch Kids that I had rerooted and made clothes for. You can read my story about how I got started with CPK dolls here.  I started getting emails from people, asking me to reroot CPK dolls for them. So I shifted my business away from Barbie clothes and started focusing on Cabbage Patch Kids. I came across an estate sale with a lot of dolls and purchased them for my reroots. I began selling them on eBay. My very first reroot that I listed on eBay can be found here.

 Although I loved selling my creations for an income, it wasn't enough so I decided to get a job outside the home, working at my favorite store--Jo-ann Fabrics.  Unfortunately, because I tend to over-work myself, I tore a ligament in my right wrist. I'm right-handed,  so it has been extremely difficult for me.  I've had to literally change the way I do everything, and I can no longer do certain things.  I've had to give up a lot of things that I love doing.

 In the midst of all of this, I have found primitive dolls to be fascinating.  I made my first Prairie doll and my daughter loved it so much, that I gave it to her.  I made a couple more dolls, one that my nine-year-old daughter finished and kept for herself, and the other that I "grunged" and made dirty-looking, using coffee, ground cloves, and nutmeg. I didn't "finish" any seams and made everything as simple as possible. It was completely going against the grain for me.  Going  primitive is opening a new chapter in my life and I can't wait to explore it more!