Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Sewing News Clip

While browsing the boards over at PR today I found a thread about a promo that Husqavarna, Singer, Viking and Pfaff were doing with Martha Stewart. The last post linked to a HSVP press release announcing a long term endorsement agreement with Martha for their machines. I must preface this by saying that I was unaware that these companies are all owned by one firm. Does that mean that Singers will improve their quality to levels known only by our mothers and grandmothers? Or does it mean that the quality of the others will decrease? Or will everything just stay the same? I wonder if any of the machines are/will be the same inside?

CAVEAT: I am not a fan of Martha Stewart. I respect her skills in the public showing of her domestic domain and her business savvy. I am just not a personal fan of her style and her penchant for making everything so over the top ...

There were a couple of lines in the press release that caught my eye. The first one is a quote from Martha:
I’m delighted that sewing is enjoying a national renaissance
. Really? I wasn't aware that it had really faded away ... granted there are those people who have stopped sewing for whatever reason, but really, wasn't it only that the media awareness of our craft had almost disappeared?

The next quote that got me was this longer one from SVP is this one:
The most extensive consumer research ever conducted in the history of SINGER, HUSQVARNA VIKING, and PFAFF for the past two years shows that prospective and beginning sewers are looking for a sewing mentor. A former fashion model-turned-entrepreneur, Martha Stewart is widely recognized as the leading how-to expert in all areas relating to the home, including crafts. Sewing enthusiasts of every skill level will benefit from the ideas, patterns, projects and templates featured in the company’s family of magazines—including Martha Stewart Living, Blueprint, and Martha Stewart Weddings. They are also able to easily access extensive sewing content and patterns at www.MarthaStewart.com/sewing (http:www.marthastewart.com/sewing). In addition, sewing projects are regularly featured on The Martha Stewart Show, a nationally syndicated daily television show distributed by NBC Universal and carried by leading broadcast TV stations.
(emphasis added) Will this result in a Martha Stewart line of machines? Will having her name on the machines or even the boxes result in a price increase?

Most importantly, do we really need a national figure as a sewing mentor? There are many sewing experts out there with advice to give and lessons to teach. Does garment sewing really need a Martha Stewart type figure? Granted, having the Martha put sewing on the national map will give sewing a boost as she does reach millions of houses each day. And if she can convince us all that we really need Kitchen Aid mixers, then maybe she can convince those without machines that they need to buy one and get sewing ... but what then? What will she do to earn her status as our mentor? Inquiring minds want to know and I may even start watching, just to see what comes of this. Personally, I don't need a mentor, I need a range of resources that I can reach out to depending upon what project I am working on. I don't use any one person's methods exclusively. I use the FBA of Palmer Pletsch, the fly zip of Sandra Betzina, the welt pockets of Gorgeous Things' Ann, the welt buttonholes of els, shall I go on? Personally, any sewing advice I take has to come from a credible source. I want fit advice from a person whose garments actually fit and flatter (hear that, Martha?).

OK. I am off my soapbox now. Forgive the rant ...

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