When SewMamaSew.com was established in 2005, it claimed its aim was “to bring you hip, bold collections from the most fashion-forward manufacturers.” It also supplied sewing patterns and promised “a wonderful selection of modern and retro oilcloth prints, plus gingham oilcloth in every color of the rainbow!”
The website gained a huge following among sewing craft enthusiasts and bloggers. However, attempting to visit SewMamaSew.com today takes one to a very short story: “Once upon a time, there lived a king who was immensely rich. He had broad lands and sacks overflowing with gold.”
What could have happened to the website that every credible sewing blogger wanted to write for? This is the question we will attempt to answer by following the history of the site and some of its content.
The Educator Who Started SewMamaSew.com
SewMamaSew.com was established by Kristin Link. If you go to Link’s LinkedIn profile, you will see that she started her professional carrier as a curriculum developer and instructional designer for Fred Meyer and College Net.
A blog that calls itself the supplier of “fabric and patterns for modern sewists,” ilovefabric.com, describes Link as a mother of two girls. It continues, “She’s a former educator who loves teaching and training and now feels incredibly lucky to be buying and selling fabric for a living.”
With more than 22,100 followers on Instagram, it’s fair to call Link an influencer.
If you analyzed archived pages of SewMamaSew.com from its early days in 2005, you would note that it was always an e-commerce website.
Initially, visitors selected products from 8 categories: New Items, Cotton by Collection, Cotton by Print, Minkee/Minky, Oilcloth, Sewing Patterns, Embroidery, and Notions.
The character of SewMamaSew.com changed quite a lot over the years. By 2012, the site was divided into three main sections: Shop, Blog, and Forum.
At this time, it invited visitors to “Browse our shop for modern cotton fabric and hip new sewing patterns from indie designers. Visit our blog for sewing tutorials, project ideas, and giveaways. Join the supportive sewing community in our forum to share your skills and learn something new.”
A Contributor’s Bucket List
If you want to get an idea of how successful a website is, you need to look at the kind of people excited to be featured on the site. SewMamaSew.com didn’t have a shortage of writers knocking on its doors to ask if their work could be featured.
One such writer is teacher and blogger Julie Cefalu. In a 2016 piece, Cefalu writes, “I’ve finally crossed one item off my bucket list, and that is to become a contributor to Sew Mama Sew! If you hop on over there today, you’ll find my article: 7 Tips for Buying a Sewing Machine.”
Cefalu adds, “Thank you Beth at Sew Mama Sew for making my writing experience smooth and for making me feel welcome. You guys are awesome!” Beth helped Link run SewMamaSew.com.
Another contributor was Domenica Tootell. She calls herself “a wife, a mother, a learner, and a teacher who believes in the cycle of learning, growing, and changing in order to be the best that I can be and ultimately making the world a better place.”
Tootell’s article for Sew Mama Sew contains a review of her sewing machine. She answers common questions related to the cost of the machine, the amount of work she does on it, and what she loves and hates about it.
Tutorial designers were also falling over each other to have their work featured on SewMamaSew.com.
One who calls herself Rae, from Made-By-Rae.com, announces on her website, “My Spring Top Tutorial on Sew Mama Sew.”
“I design sewing tools that allow women to connect to their creativity by sewing clothing that is both beautiful and practical,” is how Rae describes her work.
She adds, “I’ve been working on this [tutorial] for a few weeks but didn’t want to give away any surprises, but now it’s up and running, so I’m very excited to share it with all of you.”
Anyone who wanted to show a new sewing pattern to a bigger crowd knew that Sew Mama Saw was the place to go to.
For example, when Miss Daisy Patterns & Tutorials introduced a new pattern, they sent it to SewMamaSew.com and directed their readers to find it there.
In a message to visitors, Missdaisypatterns.com writes, “My latest softie cushion sewing patterns to make … soft and functional cushions have just gone live over on Sew Mama Sew’s website.”
Contests and Giveaways
One of the features that made SewMamaSew.com so popular among people who love the craft of sewing was the freebies and contests.
The website partnered with sites like SewSweetness.com to offer visitors prizes. For instance, one contest published by SewSweetness.com invites visitors to Sew Mama Sew for a bag-making contest with nearly $1,000 in prizes.
SewSweetness.com tells users, “All you need to do is make a bag using one of my patterns.”
Abby Glassenberg, who ran a blog about designing and sewing stuffed animals, WhileSheNaps.com, reports about a softie sewing contest run by Sew Mama Sew.
She writes, “Kristin and Beth at Sew Mama Sew have put together a contest with some amazing prizes to get everyone motivated, including a beautiful Pfaff sewing machine worth $3,999.”
SewMamaSew.com was also the host of the Sew Mama Sew Give Away Day. The site collaborated with other blogs to offer prizes to visitors.
Nancy Zieman’s block was one of the sites participating in the Sew Mama Sew Give Away Day. Zieman writes, “This year, as part of the 2017 Sew Mama Sew Give Away Day, I’m giving away a collection of my three NEW quilt patterns along with a 22-piece fat quarter bundle of my NEW Garnet fabric.”
What Then Happened To Sew Mama Sew?
The challenges that may have led to the demise of SewMamaSew.com seem to have started around 2017, a rough year for Link.
She seems to have neglected SewMamaSew.com for some time in 2017 because she had to take “some time to move and settle … in a new state, nurse an illness, treat an injury, [and] mourn a death.”
After dealing with all these difficult issues, Link told visitors that she had relaunched the website.
However, it’s not clear what eventually happened after the relaunch. In 2020, Reddit users were asking, “Does anyone have any information on why it seems like Sew Mama Sew’s website is gone?”
No one seems to have an answer, but one Reddit user answers, “Dunno…she posted three days ago  on Facebook, so she’s ok.”