Confessions of an un-hip sewing blogger

Do you ever feel like an un-hip sewing blogger, sewist or crafter? From


I have a confession to make.

I’m an un-hip sewing blogger.

Have you noticed?

Despite the “sewmccool” name, my style is pretty vanilla, Midwest Mom.

I avoid mom jeans and baggy tops and don’t go shopping in my sweatpants (most of the time)…

…though I won’t judge you if you do.


I just don’t feel hip.

First of all….

…I don’t have any tattoos.

…And I don’t have a cool retro hairstyle.

Actually, I don’t have a special something that’s readily identifiable as “That’s Deanna, of SewMcCool.”


Are bloggers and sewists more successful if they have a certain type of style?

Please don’t take this as me “judging” anyone’s style. I’m not. I admire bloggers and sewists with a special, personal look. A persona. An “it” thing.

It’s just that I don’t have one.

And it makes me wonder. Do I need a persona?

I added a pink streak to my hair last fall and my sister-in-law looked at me with a crinkled nose and said, “What did you do?

(the streak was for breast cancer awareness, but I ditched it when October ended.)

I guess it wasn’t me.

What about a nose ring?

I can hear it now: “That’s Deanna, the sewing blogger with the nose ring!”


Sadly, my nose isn’t flattering enough for a nose ring. (Seriously, let’s just avoid focusing on that area.)

Maybe I should “go gray.”

No, not my hair (I’m not quite there yet).

But I’ve been seeing a lot of grays and neutrals on blogs lately.

It looks fresh and hip and clean.

However … I see enough gray out my window every winter.

I like bright colors.


I guess that’s not me, either.

Well, then.

Honestly, I have a long history of acknowledging my lack-of-hipness.

In college, I minored in art. Many of my classmates had dyed black hair and interesting piercings and wore lots of black eyeliner.

My style in class: No makeup, and I smelled vaguely like a food disposal, because I worked the lunch shift in the dish room of  the dorm cafeteria….literally scooping leftovers into a disposal. I even had to ditch the latex gloves because they made my hands smell skunk-y.

(laugh if you want, but I’m totally not exaggerating. One time I was talking with a group of friends after lunch and my hands were clasped together. When I opened them to make a gesture….an odor wafted out even though I had washed them multiple times! A friend asked, “Why do I smell skunk all of a sudden?” I had no choice but to fess up, and never.ever.wear.latex.gloves.again.)

So…regarding my art-school classmates (who didn’t smell like disposals or skunks), I admired their boldness in their personal appearance, but….

…that wasn’t me either.

Nowadays, sometimes I get compliments on my clothes, but I still feel un-hip among sophisticates because I prefer bold colors and prints.

Hey, I’m short. I can get lost in this world!

(I had a boyfriend who didn’t admire my color choices and bought me a plain navy sweater and khaki pants to add some class to my wardrobe. He lives in New York City now, I’ve heard through the grapevine. He really is more hip than I am, since I’m still living in Indiana, right?)

On the other hand, a group of women at a sewing/blogging conference took a photo of me in September because they liked the dress I wore. I’m sure my smile was awkward.

{say cheeeeeese!!!}

I’ll admit that it did make me feel kind of good, though.

Maybe I was hip to them?


Do you ever feel unhip?

Do you think bloggers and sewists need a certain style, a certain vibe, to build their readership, following, or business?

Have you ever latched onto a style that’s not completely your own, just to fit in, or to make a statement?

What to do when hipness doesn’t come naturally?

Please share your thoughts.


I mean, I just told you about my skunk-y latex thing.

Throw an un-hip sewing blogger a bone. :)


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  1. says

    I really enjoyed reading this. I used to have a style when I was younger, but for years i’ve been feeling “lost” when it comes to that subject. I do have a nose piercing, I do have 5 tattoos, but that doesn’t mean I am hip. I mostly wear jeans and t-shirts or sweaters. My hair is usually combod in a tail or something similar. I believe a blogger with a unique style is easier to like…

    • Deanna McCool says

      Thanks, Magda! I bet you are hip. :) I guess, around the house…no one dresses fabulously, right? I have this vision that some are probably looking great all the time, but maybe that’s what they portray to the world, too.

  2. says

    o man, I’m not the only unhip blogger out there! ha! I still wear clothes that I bought years ago (like….highschool)–I don’t follow trends so they ‘work’ at anytime. I sew things that I like, in colors and patterns I like. They’re not super ‘in’ but they are practical (for the most part!) So, for my part, I think sew what you like–you and your family are the ones that have to enjoy the end product–the blog is (in my opinion) just a place to share what you’ve made with other crafty ladies!
    fenna recently posted…Sewing Machine ReviewMy Profile

    • Deanna McCool says

      So true! Thankfully I’ve ditched the clothes from high school…..but I’m likely older than you are. We’re talking shoulder pads, here. Shoulder pads. Yikes. Though neon is back in….hmmm…. :) Thanks for your comment, and I agree with you!

  3. says

    I’m not hip, I’m just me. I don’t worry about it. You’ve got dedicated readers, we must like something about you, right!

    My blog is also very much about color and I want to redesign it to add some stuff, but the truth is, I like it the way it is!

  4. Laura says

    While you may not have a signature external style you do have personality. Your writing has ‘voice’ which most lack. I’ll take substance over style every.single.time.

  5. says

    I used to feel like that too, now I just wear what I want, sometimes it’s jeans and a t. Sometimes something a bit more dressed up. I love colour too. If I like it I wear it, unless it’s orange! Just be yourself.
    Claire recently posted…Spring Sewing SwapMy Profile

  6. says

    oh good grief Deanna, we are all too old to bother with hip. Maybe if we were in our 20s, this would be a consideration. I don’t want to look at nose rings and see which color your hair is this week. That doesn’t interest me. I do not follow bloggers who are fashionistas and sew. I am a middle aged, slightly tubby woman from the pacific northwest who considers Dansko clogs the best shoes ever made. I don’t care about platform heals, what Lady Gaga is wearing, or the latest makeup trend. I do care about what fabric Free Spirit is doing next, which color Pantone chooses for the year, the latest sewing notion from Moda, and which tutorial Tasha has put out for a new quilting project to go with her darling Riley Blake fabric. And I don’t quilt!

    So, I am right there with you in the un-hip group. And I am pretty sure hip is no longer hip anyway. What is the 2014 version of hip? Does urban dictionary have an updated list of what words we should be using?
    Kathy recently posted…Using canned air to clean a serger or sewing machineMy Profile

    • Deanna McCool says

      Thank you. I really love them and would enjoy another pair with a different design if I could afford another pair. :) I have arthritis in my feet and I’m a short woman. So….these are my form of “high heels.” (I’ll admit I don’t actually wear them with socks…took a little artistic license with the photo!)

  7. says

    Oh my! how honest is your post.
    Same here.. I’m so not hip or for that matter any face showing worthy face or style and so I keep it hidden although I know the virtual doesn’t like it. I have thought over and over about it but I can’t come over. Also, after I’ve put on weight I’m in a never ending wait mode to get back to have any style.
    Preethi recently posted…Nirma skirt – Purchase Fabric – Flowy drapyMy Profile

    • Deanna McCool says

      Preethi – I don’t think there’s any need to wait! :) There are lots of styles for curvier girls. I bet you can sew yourself something that’s fabulous! :) I’m sure you’re beautiful.

  8. Karen Fuhrman says

    You are hip because really hip people don’t care if they are hip or not! They just are. When I was in the workforce I got up and did the hair and make up every morning. Now if my clothes are clean and my faced washed and teeth brushed I am good to go. (and the sunscreen) Just have too many more important things than “is my lipstick color the one Dior says is “in” this Spring”. Living in South Florida there are many fashionistas around and at times I feel so, uh plain, quiet (the grey mouse) and not cool in my yoga pants and tee shirts. But really, I am much happier and sanier now. I would love to have SewMcCool living next door to me so I could brag to everyone how “hip” my sewing blogger neighbor is.

    • Deanna McCool says

      Awe, thank you! And I would totally join you in my yoga pants and T shirts! :) I imagine there *is* more pressure to look like a fashionista in different parts of the country – here in Indiana we’re covered up half the year from the cold, so we can hide our un-hipness for about 5 months of the year anyway! :)

  9. says

    I have actually just been thinking about this same thing! It’s really tempting for me to sew clothes that I imagine myself wearing, which are very, very different from clothes that I will wear (especially now that I stay at home with a toddler). I’m participating in my first blog tour next week and I am a little nervous that my choices will comes off as boring but… they’re all things I know I will wear! I think there are sewing/lifestyle blogs that are selling a ‘look’ and sewing/sewing blogs. I read more of the latter, and you obviously know I’m a fan of your sewing/sewing blog 😀
    Stephanie recently posted…Greenstyles Lacy Slope Hoodie – Pattern ReviewMy Profile

    • Deanna McCool says

      You’re right, Stephanie…there is a difference between a sewing/lifestyle blog and a sewing/sewing blog. I hadn’t thought of it that way!

  10. says

    I think we all have our strengths and weaknesses, but I definitely wouldn’t call your “un-hip-ness” either. Liking colors and patterns IS a style! Different prints come and go (besides the gray, everyone went coo-coo for chevron all of a sudden) and prints ALWAYS are a tell-tell sign of someone’s personality. Maybe your sense of fashion is not something that gets reactions on a daily basis, but those moments when it does are enough.

    Call yourself Vanilla WITH Sprinkles 😉

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