Suzanna McKeon of St. Louis, MO, makes amazing PDF patterns for purses and bags through her company Hold it Right There. Meet the woman behind the patterns and visit her Etsy shop and Facebook page! Suzanna is generously offering a 30% off discount to all sis boom fans in her Etsy shop. Just use coupon code LOVESISBOOM at check out.
Starting a creative business from my home has been a dream of mine for a long time. With the St. Louis Arch my inspiration, my brother helped me design a logo, and the name Hold It Right There came to me and stuck. This idea remained in my sketchbook until I took an upholstery class five years ago. The class reignited my love of sewing. Using principles I learned in class, I began designing bags. I read everything I could about creating bags and experimented every chance I got.
At one point, I wanted to make a green purse for myself, with birds in the print. Googling this, I landed on Jennifer Paganelli’s gorgeous fabrics. I was enchanted by the exquisite illustrations of birds and vibrant green and blue colors. I placed my first order for Sis Boom fabric and was hooked. I now have a towering stash! I am captivated by the color palette Jennifer uses. I love the celebratory, joyful and playful feel to her fabric collections. I might be having a stressful or maybe mundane day, but the Sis Boom bag I’m taking around with me reminds me there is beauty and wonder.
While I have made many, many garments in the past, my passion is designing and creating bags. I love that bags do not require altering. They are one size fits all! And, a fun accessory is like carrying a piece of useful artwork with you throughout your day. I also love the versatility of bag design — there’s really no end to combinations and styles. Designing sewing patterns for bags is the best of all worlds for me. I can continually experiment with new bag designs. Translating the physical bag into written instructions and illustrations taps my background in teaching and experience in graphic design. It is incredibly rewarding to see another individual’s version of my pattern design!
I’m finding my dream of a creative home business is a journey. It often takes place in snatches, behind my sewing machine at my dining room table between meals with my husband and kids, or on my laptop during my children’s music lessons. I think more than anything else, it grows me in new and surprising ways.
I love sewing. This is no surprise! But, I do think I may have given up long ago had my mom not encouraged me, helped me when I was completely frustrated with a sewing project, and taught me many tricks and tips, especially in fabric layout. (She is meticulous in matching prints; all her plaids chevron perfectly!) She bought me my first sewing machine when I was in a teenager and wore the tops I made for her.
My newest pattern in the works started as a birthday present for my mom. I will name it after this spunky, energetic, creative, cheerful, friendly woman I have the privilege of calling mom. Stay tuned for the release of Gabrielle!
A new pattern Suzanna is working on shown in Valerie in midnight from the Beauty Queen line. Love the flower detail on the front.
Corcoran Cross Body Bag PDF pattern shwon in JoAnn in mustard from the Crazy Love Line.
Gabrielle bag shown in the green dot fabric from the Jenny Eliza line for JoAnn Fabrics
Three of Suzanna’s designs shown in Chandler in Grape from the West Indies line.