Designer of the Week - Lily and Ebony

This week get to know Linda of Lily and Ebony. "My husband and I live in a small town, Woodinville, just outside Seattle, Washington. We have 4 grown children, a son, Trent, and three girls, Quinn, Whitney and Briley. They are all either in college or to be entering this fall. Summertime is fun and busy when our house fills with returning home kids and all their friends! "

See her current eBay auctions: Lily and Ebony

JM: When did you get started sewing and creating?

LINDA: I have been sewing and creating for as long as I can remember. When I was young, I lived mostly on my grandparent's farm filled with all sorts of tools and plenty of raw materials. The possibilities were endless. I started sewing when I was 8 years old. My grandmother had an old treadle sewing machine. One rainy day she gave me a box full of old flour sacks and taught me how to make a pattern with newspaper. Using that very old and persnickety sewing machine, I made a simple jumper with a ruffle hem that I still have. Yep, I still have that sewing machine, too.

During my early teens, I took all day intensive summer sewing classes from a skilled (and very fussy picky) voc-tech teacher. I appreciate her much more now than I did back then! I sewed just about everything for many years. I am in awe of all the moms who can sew when their kids are little. During those years, my new (electric?woohoo) sewing machine was mostly a dust collector.

JM: When did you start selling your designs on eBay?


Before I started selling on Ebay, I spent 10 years teaching Elementary School. During that time, I got married and had 4 kids. I gave up teaching and started a hairbow and headband manufacturing business called LAE Designs, selling wholesale to retail. My biggest customer was Nordstrom. It was a large endeavor and kept me busy for several years. I learned about Ebay from my neighbor who helped me eventually liquidate LAE Designs Hairbows and Headbands in 1999. I only kept the Ruffle Ribbon hair accessory line. In addition to Ebay , I sell on Etsy.

I was intrigued by all the wonderful boutique custom clothes and fabulous designs by the very talented community that I saw on Ebay. I was so inspired that I bought a new sewing machine and a serger. My teen aged kids provided me with computer support and some very definite fashion opinions! I am thrilled to have the opportunity to return to my love of sewing and passion to create once again.

JM: How did come up with your name, Lily and Ebony ?

LINDA: LilyandEbony is a totally made up name. It does tie in with the LAE (initials) from my former business and that was my only criteria for choosing it. I enjoy the entire creative process. Drawing the design, collecting the materials, and synthesizing are my favorite aspects. Receiving pictures from my models is very exciting. The sets seem to come alive and I can hardly wait to list! It is the culminating event and makes the whole adventure worthwhile.

JM: Do you belong to any boutique group?

LINDA:I belong to WisteriaLane Design Group. I could write a volume about this amazing group of ultra talented Women. I joined less than a year ago with very little group experience. My expectations have been surpassed many times over. We have unique group launches the second Tuesday of every month. WiateriaLane has experienced continual growth and gained exceptional notoriety in just a little over a year. Each and every one of my WistaSistas is encouraging, supportive, and creative. We constantly share ideas and everyone has a voice in group decision making. WisteriaLane is a design community with tremendous leadership, undying loyalty, remarkable creative talent and skills, and superb customer service.

JM: If you could learn some new skills, what would they be?

LINDA: Better photography skills! My current focus is on improving my computer skills, especially Photoshop. It's not my favorite activity and I am not very good at it, but I try to learn something new every week.

JM: What other things do you enjoy besides making great outfits?

LINDA: In addition to sewing, I like to cook, vegetable garden, read, and visit beaches (any time, anywhere) to soak up the sun!

JM: Anything else you would like to add?

LINDA:I would like to personally thank Jessica (Purely*Princess*Jewels) and Lesli (SweetToesBoutique), the talent behind the cameras, for their outstanding photography and editing abilities. Along with their sweetheart daughters, they provide me with all of my pictures. I couldn?t do it without you! Hugs!

I would like to take this opportunity to thank my family and my WistaSistas for their unending support, and to Journal Modiste for allowing me to share with all of you.

Do you have a question that you are dying to ask Linda? Comment about something she said or designed? Post it here and she will answer it!

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Quinn - the favorite daughter | Saturday, June 9, 2007 5:59 PM | flag
Woot! Way to be mombo! Your inevitable arthritis and poor eye-sight are finally worth it! You failed to mention, however, that LAE has monopolized what once was a child's playroom. haha. Congrats! P.S. I will not mention either of the cats.

Pam-Recent buyer | Saturday, June 9, 2007 12:54 PM | flag
Congrats on your feature! You know I love your work. Love the pretty in pink dress up there! I have pictures of it to share!

Briley | Friday, June 8, 2007 6:16 PM | flag
The below statement is from me sorry!

| Friday, June 8, 2007 6:15 PM | flag
Yeah mom way to go! You are a super cool mom! Hey i will try my best to keep Calypso and Allegro out of the sewing room, even though they love your fabrics soooo much!

Erin ~the vintage pearl | Friday, June 8, 2007 2:37 PM | flag
Yay Linda! Congrats on the feature! You're an amazing designer and friend!

Lesli & Grace :-) | Friday, June 8, 2007 11:02 AM | flag
What a wonderful interview, Linda! I'm so happy to know you and work with you. You are one of the most kind-hearted, talented people I've ever met. Congratulations on your well-deserved feature!

Renee-Candy Stick Lane | Friday, June 8, 2007 7:37 AM | flag
Linda, WOW what a great always here people say 'I wish I had kept that ***' Its wonderful that you kept your jumper! And, your clothes are stunning!

Cammie- My Little Fairytales | Thursday, June 7, 2007 5:30 PM | flag
What a nice interview Linda. I love your sentiments...holding onto that precious jumper and that speical machine that inspired your love of this art. -cammie

Whit | Thursday, June 7, 2007 5:12 PM | flag
Way to go Mo! Keep up the sewing, Calypso and Allegro say thanks for keeping them company as well!

Darcy | Thursday, June 7, 2007 3:43 PM | flag
Congrats on the feature Linda! You really deserve it because every time you have a new listing I am in awe! You are tremendously talented and oh yeah, I'm very glad to be a WistaSista with you! :) I loved reading your interview. Congrats again!

Laurie *BLoWiN*BuBbLeS*BouTiQuE* | Thursday, June 7, 2007 2:10 PM | flag
Linda! What a well deserved and awesome interview! I have the pleasure of owning two of Linda's creations and I can say that they are crafted with perfection! You are truly a sweet woman and I am so glad we had the chance to meet and become Wistasista's! Congrats!

Christine - GenMarie | Thursday, June 7, 2007 1:44 PM | flag
What a great interview Linda! I loved reading it! I have had the opportunity to spend time with Linda, and not only is she an amazing designer, she is a beautiful person! I'm so excited for you! Congratulations!

Wendy | Thursday, June 7, 2007 1:05 PM | flag
what an awesome interview. You are a not only a sweet person, but an incredible talent! No wonder you sold to Nordstroms. Congrats on your JM feature! It is well deserved... xoxo Wendy

Timi ~ My Beach Cottage Design | Thursday, June 7, 2007 12:56 PM | flag
Linda ~ Great interview & congrats on the feature! You are mega talented & such a wonderful person, we're so lucky to know you! Congrats again!

Mary~ Sweet Pea Totes | Thursday, June 7, 2007 12:39 PM | flag
Congrats Linda!! Your designs are amazingly first class. To my fellow Wistasista CONGRATS!!

Jessica & Jaden | Thursday, June 7, 2007 12:19 PM | flag
Congrats on the feature Linda! I dont know of a more deserving person! Your sets are always beautiful and we are always thrilled to model them! And your character is something to admire, we love ya, your the BEST!!

Some past Lily and Ebony Designs

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