I’m Deborah, and I sew.  I live in Atlanta with my husband and our three children in a renovated mid-century ranch on an acre of land. I came to sewing in a roudabout way, starting out as a schoolteacher then earning a Master’s (and half a PhD) in archaeology, before launching a children’s clothing line in 2007 that morphed into teaching sewing in Atlanta that grew into teaching video sewing classes online.

In 2015, I launched The Murder Mystery Quilt and The League of Dressmakers, online subscription clubs designed to playfully and intentionally connect the sewing community, built on my firm belief that sewing is for everyone, and that you’ll learn the most if you jump in with both feet and give it a shot–even if you’re not quite sure what you’re doing. (I’m also quite adamant that everything ought to have pockets.) I’ve had the joy of meeting nearly 9000 members through my clubs since they launched, and have formed some of the most rewarding relationships of my professional life as a result.

When I feel like tooting my own horn, I’ll also tell you I’m the author of two best-selling books, Stitch by Stitch and Stitch Savvy, whose combined sales total nearly 100,000 copies.  I proudly founded the bricks-and-mortar Whipstitch, a popular local retail sewing lounge which was voted Best of Atlanta every year it was open.  I’m also a regular speaker and instructor for sewing and blogging conferences, including Sewing Summit, the School of Art Fashion, and the International Quilt Market, as well as at local quilt guilds.

Currently, I’m spending my time adding every online class I’ve ever taught to the digital League of Dressmakers catalog, designing the next installment of the Murder Mystery Quilt while writing the accompanying novel (my sixth!), and publishing current personal sewing projects here on Whipstitch.  My passion is to guide you to love sewing and make it a part of your everyday life–I not-so-secretly believe that EVERYONE should learn to sew, and have made my mission to create a community and products that help you Learn As You Sew ™!

Please take a tour and stay a while!  Check out some of my favorite posts and readers’ favorite projects to get a better idea of who I am and what I like.  I’d really love to get to know you!

Popular Posts

Popular Finished Projects

Blog Series

  • I love putting together tutorials and working on sewing technique.  Those items can be found in the tutorials link at the top of the page, or by clicking here.  (This page is currently under renovation, with a couple dozen–eek!–new items lurking in corners that I’ve yet to add!)
  • The Sewing Buddy Project is an internet-based sewing pen pal arrangement that grew out of the 2010 Sewing Goals survey.  To see what this year’s Sewing Buddies have been up to, check out the posts.
  • Christmas of 2010, I decided it was time to finally make the Advent calendar I’d been dreaming of ever since I moved out of my mom’s house and first did Christmas on my own.  See the final product and the day-by-day shots!
  • Neat As Ninepence is all about sewing for every room of the house, organizing your space, and using your machine to bring beauty and happiness to every corner of your home.  You know, your basic unambitious blog series.
  • Sewing With Kids was originally intended to be a book title that I wanted to pitch to my publisher.  I decided instead to make it a blog series and offer it as a weekly series that walks through sewing projects to do WITH our kids, and all the other lessons we can teach them along the way.
  • The Art of Manipulating Fabric is one of my favorite eye-candy sewing books, and in 2011 I wanted to challenge myself to work through EVERY technique in the book, one by one, with each technique leading to a finished project–I really hate sewing in the abstract, and pretty much always want to have a Real Thing to show off at the end.  See my progress and the good (and bad) projects that come out of it!
  • The Charm Pack Patterns Series is a whole mess of free ideas and patterns and links for using the 5″ x 5″ squares that come in a quilter’s charm pack of fabric.
  • The Anthropology of Sewing is a (VERY) occasional series where I put that graduate degree to good use and walk through some of why I think sewing has suddenly taken off and found a new niche in America today.


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    Camp Stitchalot: Summer 2014
    March 2, 2018 at 11:28 am

    […] Stitch by Stitch and Stitch Savvy. Deborah teaches e-classes on many topics through her website, Whipstitch. She also has a Craftsy class – Design and Sew an A-Line […]

  • Reply
    Vacation Tova Top | Whipstitch
    July 29, 2020 at 3:39 pm

    […] loved this Amy Butler print for years and years. Back when I owned a retail shop, I made a sample Tova Top from this sweet cotton lawn and used it as a display sample. In a moment […]

  • Reply
    21 Best Sewing Blogs in 2021 You Need Follow Right Now
    May 25, 2021 at 3:47 pm

    […] Whipstitch […]

  • Reply
    Ann will llusms
    July 25, 2023 at 8:52 pm

    Hi Debra. I have the book yiu published stitch savvy and I want to make the boys pea coat. I have search and searched and I cannot figure out the sizes on the pattern. It looks like there are 3 sizes. Can you email me with this information. Thanks
    Ann Williams
    [email protected]

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