Who? What? Why?

Hello! You're here because you want to know who I am, and why I write this blog.

LiEr is my middle name, but it is half the length of my first name, Lorraine, and I get to type it with just half the number of keys. 
Before I had kids, I was a high school Physics teacher and later a school and crisis counselor and onetime education curriculum developer. I also trained and provided consultation to teachers and school personnel to help the students in their school, and to set up school systems in preparation for emergencies and crises. 

I am married to my husband, who is fabulous, and whose ideas and sensibility have saved me from doing, and failing at, very daft crafts. He is a software engineer, funny and a great photographer. He is also kind, and lets me borrow his camera to take photos for this blog so I can pretend to also be a good photographer. 

My three girls are (at the time of writing this) six, four and two-and-a-half. They are a lot of fun to be with and are the inspiration for most of the things I make. Since they gave up napping, I have had to sew on the sly, which is no longer therapeutic or relaxing, but it has made me a more efficient seamstress (which is another way of saying "I have to sew fast or not at all").

I started this blog two years ago (2008) because I wanted to write tutorials. I have tried to beat the teacher part of me into retirement but failed. So now I enjoy a virtual classroom in which I get to drone on and on about stuff I like doing and making. This blog has since become something I'd like my kids to have as a resource in the future. Someday I hope they will read it themselves and have a laugh at the thoughts that went through their mum's head when she was making their toys and clothes. I also hope they know their mother was slightly bonkers but be reassured that it is thankfully not genetic (unless they want it to be).

(Edited: 2023): Those three girls are now grown and well past the age of handmade toys. These days, they're busy in all kinds of new ways and at least one of them has launched their own creative small business (brava)! I still get to sew a prom or homecoming dress every now and again, and even the odd Halloween costume, and this blog continues to evolve into a resource for other readers who are themselves raising little kids, or learning to draft and sew. I hope to keep writing and posting here - the goal is to never stop learning something new about garment making, or cardboarding, or any of the creative processes which once kept us so delightfully occupied in those early years of parenthood. I'm excited for you to still come visit. May we never stop discovering how zanily creative we can be, and how fulfilling handmade still feels. Welcome to ikatbag!

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