Sara and Claire, the lonely sewing machine- by Sara Maisonneuve

Hi everyone, my name is Sara. It’s an honour to be a guest on the L’Oiseau Blog!


My old Kenmore sewing machine, Claire, was very lonely. I hadn’t used her since July. I hadn’t used my serger - Thomas - either but sergers (being ornery and taciturn in nature) don’t mind my absence as much. I did have a good excuse, though. I had a baby (Rose!) in the middle of August and my lofty dreams of sewing while baby slept went out the window the minute we got home from the hospital. For nearly five months, I could feel Claire looking at me forlornly and sighing (as much as sewing machines can sigh) from the sewing room as I stole precious minutes of sleep (or a much needed shower) instead of breaking out my sewing chops.


Then, I started to get my mommy legs under me. I lined up some designated quality time with lonely Claire. At first I was at a loss at what to make. I had wanted to make grow-with-me pants for the blog for Rose, who always seems to be in the throes of yet another growth spurt. That’s what I had told Michelle and Colin from L’Oiseau that I wanted to do. When my man, Jason, announced that he needed to retire his beloved Mec zip hoodie due to worn elbows and because he’d gotten a new wool hoodie for Christmas, my project idea changed.

He’d had this beautiful blue fleece hoodie for over five years. He wore it constantly! It was the only thing I saw at the start of our first date when he wrapped me in a big bear hug. It’s been on every single trip with us across Canada and into various bits of the world too. It was always so easy to pick him out of the crowd because it’s so bright.


But I wasn’t done with it! Not for one minute! Eco-friendly people that we are, living off the grid via solar power and such, I saw that the hoodie still had a life left to live. I nabbed it from Jason, dragged it back to the sewing room, and presented it to Claire. “We’re going to make a hoodie for Rose,” I declared. (The hoodie pattern from Brindille and Twig.)

I had received a shipment of fabric from l’oiseau just the week before and knew exactly which fabric I would pair with the fleece. It’s a meter of the Star Shooter: Jersey Knit and it works perfectly! I wanted to get something gender-neutral so that the hoodie could be worn by future kiddos regardless of gender.  

I made the hoodie one evening while Jason was working. Rose cheered Claire and me on from her exersaucer (providing auditory diversion!) Because we live off the grid and the days are woefully short in winter, we use very low wattage LED bulbs to light the house to save our batteries. That made my “in progress” pictures a little dark. Sorry! It really is wonderful to live the way we do (just not very good for photography at night!)

So here it is, the hoodie that brought Jason and me together that can now be worn by our daughter (with a seriously cool twist thanks to some seriously cool fabric!)

It felt so good to be able to reconnect with Claire and sewing. It also felt good to help sentimental sweater live on with meaning! After so many months of being tired and overwhelmed, I understand how important it is to make time for the things I like to do. It recharges my batteries. I should have done this sooner!! Thank you, Michelle and Colin!