Welcome from Mayra
Hi, I’m Mayra Cecilia. I’ve been sewing nearly all my life and I’m so excited that you have found your way to So Sew Easy!
I grew up in a small town in the foothills of a volcano in Panama, Central America. It rained a lot there and when it rained there wasn’t much to do indoors, except read, draw and, of course, SEW!
My sewing adventures started when I just a kid since I was never very interested in playing with toys. I guess it bored me that the toys always looked the same, especially the dolls. So I had a brilliant idea to cut my little sister’s Barbie’s hair. I tried my best to do a good job, but it was clear I had botched the job and when she found me in the middle of a golden mess of doll hair. I quickly had to beg her not to cry —which surely would have made my mother sprint to her rescue. I whispered quietly, “don’t worry, the hair will grow back”…. Knowing my deceitfulness and feeling guilty I added, “let's sew some beautiful new clothes for Barbie”. And so my love for sewing was born. I was nine years old.
In my late teens, I won a scholarship to study Fashion Design in the US and after that, I haven't stopped traveling since then. I have been blessed with the opportunity to live in Cameroon, West Africa, the Virgin Islands, Switzerland, Sydney, Paris, Chile and Singapore where I've lived for 10 years. I try to bring all these influences into my designs and my sewing.
I have learned there are many ways to do the same thing, that there are no mistakes in fashion only adaptability and making something the hard way is always the wrong way. I look forward to sharing some of these tips with you.
With limited experience in the blogging world, I launched myself headfirst into the world of the internet after purchasing the site from Deby in late 2015. Although this website doesn't record my blogging experience it does record my sewing experiences. I like to design my own patterns and make them available on the site for you to try. It often takes me until the small hours of the morning to finish a post, but it is because it is a never-ending project, which I love to do with all my heart. I love to make beautiful things for the house, gifts for my family and friends and well-fitted clothes.
And you can do it too – it’s so sew easy!
I love to read your comments and links to your own projects. You can drop me a line any time in the comments below. I speak three languages Spanish, English and French. I read the comments every day!
Alternatively, you can follow me on Instagram and use #soseweasyofficial so I can see your sewing journey and the use of patterns you have found on this website.
I LOVE Pinterest!
I love to pin all the sewing patterns, tips and tutorials I find on Pinterest along with inspiration such as favourite sewing patterns, favourite fashions, and favourite fabrics! Follow along by joining my Pinterest Boards and you'll discover so much more than I can share here.
I can’t get the video to come up for easy cosmetic bag, thanks Deirdre
I have not commented for some time but have not forgotten the help you gave us learner sewers at the beginning! I was so inspired by Deby and you while trying to learn from Craftsy. I am still trying to learn how to sew properly but work full time so have neglected it a lot. I hope to retire soon so will be able to devote more time to it. I hope you and your families are all well and I often think of you both.
Hi, do you allow people to use your patterns to sell clothes made from them?
They are not for mass production, but Yes you can sell everything you make from my patterns, good luck I would appreciate you letting me know how you are going with them and if there is anything I can help you with to be successful; just drop me a note at my email. Kind Regards,
I’ve only recently started sewing at the ripe old age of 61 (now 62) and have really struggled like many other guys to find patterns that we can use for ourselves, I found a pattern of yours for men’s boxer shorts and found this one to be the easiest yet to follow, I read with interest that you were doing a “dudes wardrobe collection” and would like to follow this but can not find a page specifically for it, is there one? I would also be interested in ‘testing’ men’s pattern if you require such a thing. Keep up the good work and thanks again. You may contact me directly if you wish.
Hi Wayne, welcome to so-sew-easy and yes I will take your offer as a tester, although I never used one before. I will contact you via email. Kind Regards,
I have been amused each time I see your model in a new garment. She looks so very much like a dear friend of mine who lives in Ohio!! I just sent her a copy of the latest twist top photo to show her. LOL Who is your model?
Hi, The beautiful lady on the pictures from 2014- to 2016 patterns are from Deby, she is also behind the paid videos and the person I bought the blog from in Late 2015. After that, I occasionally use my daughter or anyone else who I can convince to pose for me. But, prefer to use a dummy since I can sell the finished product later.
Hello and thanks a lot for all. I need only to know in which country are the sizes of the patterns please.
Congratulations for your advices.
I based them on a mannequin with USA sizes, most of the time. DO have a look at the finished measurements so you can find out if you can wear a smaller or larger size. Kind Regards,
Hey Mayra !
I have a question on the flounce skirt.
Why are there 2 back flounce Parts ? And how do It sew them together ? All the way round ?
Because of the width of the fabric I used. yes, do sew all the way around. Here are the instructions.https://so-sew-easy.com/flounce-wrap-skirt-pattern/
I really like all that you have to offer. It is very hard though to download your free pattern and instructions. For example I am trying the dinosaur mitts and the black and white hoodie with the red zipper. Can you send another way tomy email? Is there something I may be doing wrong?
I just downloaded your “Safari Skirt Pattern” via Blueprint, and page 2 is blank, both on my download and on the original Blueprint site. Can you put it up maybe on your home page so I can complete my pattern. I have never had the problem before and have gotten several of your patterns.
I love that you make them seem so personal by telling little stories…I feel like we would be friends would it not be for the zillions of miles, and the huge age difference. (Unless your photo is really old, like me! LOL)
I look forward to your reply.
Charlotte in south GA, USA
Hi Charlotte, Page two is supposed to be blank as stated in the instructions. I know it is a bit confusing.
Hello Mayra, do you have patterns for petites? I have a couple of your blouse pattern but they are always big on me y I had a hard time adjusting them for a petite frame.
Hi Shirley, from a Petite to another I should add in all my patterns how to make the pattern alterations. This is the number one reason I am never the model in my posts. You need to shorten the torso. Measure your torso en compare it to the pattern and fold the pattern by the difference between your pattern and your torso. Don’t forget to redraw the sides seams. I will make write about this. in detail. Using a blouse with a peplum which would look atrocious if the alteration is not done.
Mayra, I jut purchased your Lilly dress pattern. Is there a chart for fabric that is 42″ wide? Thanks.
Hello Irene, from 2 to 2.5 Depending on the size.
Love, love, love your patterns. Your instructions are easy to follow! I have a request…how to make a maternity pillow. I see a lot of them on Amazon but most of the negative reviews are about the quality of stitching. I would love to make one of my own for my daughter-in-law. THank you.
HI Lilly, this should be easy to do. Any shape in particular?
I would like to know where to buy the 1.5″ metal grommets and the rings you used for the anti-pickpocket bag.
HI Petra, click on the links on the post and that will take you to the shop where you can get them. if you dont find what you are looking for send me and email and I will point to someone else.
Craftsy has been a mess since they changed to Blueprint. I tried to buy your carry all pattern and pay pal won’t work. I had to buy a pattern directly from another maker a few weeks ago because Craftsy no longer cares much about its customers or its instructors so is not in a hurry to fix the Pay Pay payment system if it does not put money in their pocket.
I can’t see where to leave comments about the fabric in the contest.
I read your email about sewing hooded towels. The picture on the front shows a girl in a butterfly hooded poncho. Do you have the tutorial for that one? I looked at most of them and can’t find that. I right clicked on the picture so I could show you which one I’m talking about
The Butterfly is a print only as I understand. But what a great idea about making a butterfly to go on the chest. Thanks!
love your sports bra pattern. Any suggestions on how to alter to have a back closure.
OK- embarking on the Lily dress, PDF put together and cut for size, and am a little confused as to pattern layout- for the back- for cutting 2 pieces, do I cut one with the fabric right side up and one with the fabric upside down? Or both right side up/wrong side up? And assume it doesn’t matter for the front as long as I do it on the fold- think I understand the rest of the directions- can’t wait- love your website and patterns! thanks!
Kate Cricco, it all depends on the fabric, if it is a one way print, both pattern pieces need to be laid in the same direction, if it’s not one piece can be up the other down, side by side if the fabric allows. Hope this helps x x
just to say I am about to embark upon my first so sew easy project the….. Flirty Skirty! I have some black and white fabric and have put the pattern together this afternoon. I shall cut it our tomorrow and sew it. I have sewn all sorts of stuff for many years bit lost interest ages ago. I have been doing patchwork but have now got the bug for sewing clothes. So watch this space!!
That’s great to hear Caz. It would be great if you can share some pics of your work on the Flirty Skirt page. Happy sewing!
Hi Mayra/Deby! Thank you so much for the really helpful blog. I am trying to find out the name of a Nylon fabric and I am hoping you can help me. I have included links to products using the type of Nylon fabric I am looking for. Thanks in advance.
Hi Raven, as far as I know, this type of Nylon is available only in large quantities 1000 meters rolls or more. Sometimes you can find them in fabric jobbers markets for lesser quantities but you should not use a jobber unless you can guarantee a regular supply. The type of nylon you are looking for is called Nylon 420D and 460D. Depends on the years and design.
A cheaper product and closer in looks is the polyester 600D. Although this last one is not as strong as Nylon 420D.
A good alternative and closer to home would be the following nylon, you could order a couple of meters to see if you can work with it. https://www.fabric.com/buy/ce-277/heavy-duty-nylon-canvas-black
Hi Deby, I hear what you say about living far away from fabric shopping heaven. I live in Santiago, Chile, and after 5 years have eventually found all the little hidden gems in the city that sell fabrics and notions. Anyway, I’m going to be in Grand Cayman for a few days, and was wondering, if you could spare a moment, whether you could recommend any place(s) where I might find interesting goodies for use in garment sewing. I’m always on the lookout for something different. Thanks in advance, and do keep up your lovely pattern creating and sewing – you’re very inspirational!
Hi Caroline, thanks for your note. Deby’s not really actively involved in the blog anymore. However, from spending some time there and working with Deby for a while, I can tell you that unfortunately there’s not much of interest for sewing in Grand Cayman. I know Deby always had to order pretty much everything from the US.
It’s interesting to learn you’re in Santiago. My son just moved there two months ago and we’re even contemplating moving there as well in the near future. We’ve been in Singapore for a long time and Santiago seems so nice. It would be nice to stay in touch.
Kind regards, Mayra
You have my email address now, so you’re welcome to stay in touch. And, please do not hesitate to ask if there’s anything you’d like to know about living here.
Thank you, Caroline, I will ask because I have never been. I am starting to freak out!
HI,have tried enter your giveaway,but I cannot !
Hi Margaret, your browser is probably blocking the widget. You can enter directly here: https://gleam.io/HgR2w/1500-fabriccom-fall-giveaway
Both of you ladies are an inspiration to me. I started sewing when I was about 14 years old because the family couldn’t afford to buy me clothes like the other girls at school. This was in the early 50’s and the gathered skirts were popular. Very simple to make and I had guts then. I always went to the school dances so I could make a gown to wear. I loved making the fancy type of dress. I wish I had been encouraged to go to school for this but my mother didn’t know how to do anything like this so she never encouraged me for anything that was crafty at all. She didn’t like that kind of thing because she couldn’t do it and my father’s mother was a crafty type, sewing, hand quilting, crocheting, tatting, etc. I think my mother felt a little jealous so no encouragement. My sewing was pretty much necessity. I sewed for many years for myself and for gifts but then work got in the way and I fell away from it. About the same time I found out I was sick with hepitis C and then liver cancer. I had a few treatments for this and it was worst than the chemo I had later on. I had a liver transplant in 2009 and have tried to find out what I can do since then. I’ve recently started making bags, I love bags, and am trying to do as many versions of bags as I can to see what goes right and what to change. I just made two bags the same pattern yesterday. Simple small bags with a zipper and outside pocket. Also made 3 bone shaped pillows and finished them. I love your little teeny tiny coin purse also. It came out so cute except I made the tabs to wide. I just went back and read my first line and I guess what I need is and injection of guts to get out of my comfort zone and get going. I need to find my place. I also have age against me but really that shouldn’t stop me. Boy I’ve made this so long, I really just wanted to tell you both what an inspiration you are to others. Sorry for going on so long.
Hi Pat, sorry but it is you who is an inspiration to have overcome hepatitis C, liver cancer, and a transplant. Thank you for your story, and if you think about it, you have covered many years in this few lines, so it is not long at all. People that sew belong to the half-full glass, there is always space for learning. From the bottom of my heart I thank you for sharing and whenever I feel discouraged to continue sharing what I know I will read your story and see I have no right to feel sorry for myself. Keep in touch I would love to know what you are up to. If you ever need some help drop me a line, sending you a big hug from Singapore.
I love this site too! I started sewing when I lived in Zambia in the mid-1970’s. Would you believe that I am still using the same Bernina 830 record that hubby bought as a brand new surprise for me in October, 1975? It’s a treasure and it’s also almost as good as new although it was shipped to UK in 1978 where we stayed until June, 1990 when we emigrated to South Africa. In Zambia we also had issues with limited fabric selection, but in ready-made clothing. They catered largely for the local population, so I stuck to sewing with plain coloured cotton lawn and crimpolene. Thanks Deby and Mayra. Keep up the good work! I am learning a lot from both of you. I really admire your self-motivation.
Thank you Ruth, love your story.
Ruth Carr were you related to a Mr. Carr a surgeon in Mufulira Zambia?
@Deby, Your about me inspires me. I have not been the same since a bad car wreck back in 2012 which left me with memory issues and dizziness. I have really taken a liken to sewing lately and your leggings tutorial is AWESOME. Thank you so much for sharing your creations and showing nothing can stop you!
I absolutely love this site and the things offered! I was reading the about us section and was really curious. How did the 2 of you come together and put this site together?
Dearest Amber, it is a long story…One I will share soon, in the meantime enjoy the site 🙂
I wondered the same thing amberlee12345. I remember the site when it was only Deby. It would be nice to know how you came together!
HI TJ, When opportunity meets preparation, is it fate or good luck?
Hi Deby and Mayra, the torso on this wrap dress is too long. How do I shorten it to 17 inches where my waist is. Thanks.
Hi Pauline shorten the torso about 2″ under the arm hole in by the amount you need it to be. Make sure you do it on the back as well.
Mayra and Deby, I really want to thank you for your help and kindness in sharing your easy and lovely patterns with us. I love Debby’s flowy skirts. I already made two of them. I’m just beginning to learn how to sew, and the two skirts came up ok. Thank you girls for sharing your talent with us.
Hi Dolly, thanks so much for your kind words and for your support of our site. Please keep in touch and let us know how your sewing journey progresses. Kind regards, Mayra
I think both of you are great and very talented, keep coming up with things, I admire your talents.
Hi, I really love your website, but the problem is it is buggy. I keep getting script errors constantly. I thought it was my computer and they occur because of the web site I am viewing at the time. Can you have your web master look into this. It may also be caused by pop-ups in your web site
Hi Denise, please try clearing your browser cache. We had a lot of updates to our site going through recently and sometimes scripts get confused and need to be reloaded. Sorry to hear you had problems. Please let me know if that works. Thanks for letting me know and kind regards.
I have been a long time follower of Deby and her column; but, your designs and ideas are giving a new and fresh view of sewing design. This latest one using the Pashmina is brilliant and quite attractive.
I can see why Deby has invited you on-board; it was really a stroke of genius on her part of her business as a whole.
Here’s to your success.
Hi Ame, thanks for your kind words and regards.
I enjoyed your piece about buttons, and would like to share my experiences with you. I have collected buttons over many years, and when a garment is no longer usable, I take off the buttons to re use them later on another garment. Buttons can be therapeutic, when a friend’s 2 daughters when through a traumatic time they helped me sort through my button tin, they said that just running the buttons through their fingers made them feel calmer and happier – sounds silly! – but it works!!!
What a fantastic story. Thanks for sharing that with us.
After reading most of the comments, I think I would like to join you ladies. I love to sew – but I am not fast at it. I do not make my own clothes because, I can’t fit myself and don’t wear dresses because I wear a leg brass and it doesn’t look very good.
I do like to make small things, i.e. jewelry pouches, cluches (purses)baby things and quilted wall hangings, etc.
Thanks for the reading of your comments.
Hi DeeDee, we’re delighted to have you with us. Thank you for your comments. We have a few new projects coming out shortly that sound like they would be perfect for you. Hope you like them.
I have a home in Boquete. When I moved there the first thing I packed was my sewing machine. I’ve also lived in Taipei and traveled Asia. Love Singapore. Can’t wait to try your bag pattern.
Wow Suzi, next time in Panama, I will come for a cup of coffee, I will bring silk from India, deal?
A big welcome to Mayra and all your great ideas. BUT we miss you Deby, will you be back on screen sometime soon with more of your great videos and patterns to make?? We all hope so. Watched an interesting programme about the Cayman Islands recently, oh, those white sandy beaches and blue, blue sea. Sigh!!!
Best wishes Valerie
Hey Deby and Mayra, I love your patterns and I am looking forward to make some dresses. I Always wear jeans and I never wear a dress or skirt. But with al these beautiful, and not so difficult patterns, I think I am ready for a whole new style. Sorry for my English, I am from Belgium and speaks Dutch. Love your site. Greetings
Hi Sabina, we are happy you find the site helpful, and I totally understand your English, it is better than my Dutch which is 0%. Looking forward to your creations, do come over to our chatroom and post when you are ready.
I have been looking at your dressmaking, and they are lovely.
For someone who has gone through the trauma of Brain Damage (I really know what that can be like as my daughter suffered brain damage after 2 car crashes and a stroke, all before she was 23. she is now 37 and is still struggling with VERY short term memory loss) – you have shown a lot of intestinal fortitude to even start a blog, let alone sewing! I especially love the Colour Block dress, I am wanting to do a top like that for myself.
Well Done – you are an awesome lady!
Would you mind looking at my website, and give me an honest opinion of my work, PLEASE
Hi Peta, We’d love to look at your site, but the link you left doesn’t work correctly. Can you send it again?
I’m so happy to have found this website! Yay!! Looking forward to trying some of the free patterns.
You girls are awesome
Glad you found the site interesting and thanks for the kind words of support. Mayra
I love receiving your emails weekly. I always wonder what you will have in store for us! I do not sew that much, but love the inspiration you share. Some day – soon- I am going to get back into sewing. It is very enjoyable and rewarding. Looking forward to all that you two will be inspiring us with!
Merry Christmas to you both!
Deby you have inspired me to sew bags where I only made clothing before and I love it❤️ So much so that I am working on a business plan for when I finish university – watch the space and thank you so much for helping me to find my niche ….
Welcome Mayra! So glad Deby has some help, as I have wondered how she does it all. A superwoman with a sidekick now.