I Couldn’t Believe My Eyes
By Pam VanOteghem—Leesburg, Georgia
My journey with the Sew Powerful Purse Project began with an unexpected gift of a Bernina embroidery machine.
My neighbors were clearing out and having a yard sale. They brought over a large tub and asked me if I wanted it, knowing that I love to sew. “We just want the empty tub back.”
I couldn’t believe my eyes! We emptied the tub and made a quick inventory of what was missing, broken or mysterious (never having owned an embroidery machine, it was all mysterious), and set out to the nearest Bernina dealer with the machine for inspection and service.
During the two-hour drive to the Bernina dealer, we set a budget for parts replacement and supplies, not knowing that I was entering a completely new world of sewing. It was while the machine was in for service that the idea of the purses kept coming up.
I decided that the machine should be used to help give back and every purse I’ve sent has been embroidered. No two are alike, and all are made with love and prayer. I hope every purse carries a little of the generosity and good will that made them possible. I have even transferred the pattern to Plexiglas to make fussy cutting and design easier.
If my little embroidered purses can keep a girl in school, my efforts to learn the complexities of machine embroidery have been rewarded. Thank you, Sew Powerful!