24 January 2013

A Day in the Life of Rochelle - Lucky Lucille

For this month's A Day in the Life, we get to be a fly on the wall chez Rochelle from Lucky Lucille, one of the sweetest, most colourful sewing bloggers there is! Rochelle has launched her own line of delightful homemade accessories in gorgeous prints that match her personality so perfectly. Want to find out what it's like to sew for business on a daily basis? And what she wears while she's doing it, of course. Read on...


"I was lucky enough to grow up in a home with a sewing machine so I suppose it was inevitable that I carry on the crafty tradition in my family. The first job I got after moving to Vermont was at a quaint fabric and yarn boutique. That experience, paired with Vermont’s genuine enthusiasm for small business and handmade, inspired me to start selling my accessories full time at local craft fairs and online. This whole 'I’m the boss' thing is quite new to me, but so far it’s been a real dream come true! I can’t wait to take Lucky Lucille to the next level, and I have big plans for 2013! (I suppose I should specify that Lucille is my rescued pup and the love of my life! The other love of my life is William, who plays an important part in this whole story too. I’m so very lucky to have his support through all of this!)

I set my alarm for 7:30 every morning so I can check my email first thing and package up any orders I may have received over night, and have them ready to ship off with Wil on his way in to the office. I work from a studio space out of our home and we share a car, so Wil is kind enough to do Post Office errands for me. If I don’t actually need to get out of bed at 7:30, Lucille and I snuggle and lay around for an hour or so before starting our day. I usually wear comfy clothes such as leggings or fleece pants and a sweatshirt when I’m working since sitting down and sewing for hours on end isn’t the most comfortable thing to do! Plus, wouldn’t you work in your PJ’s all day if you could get away with it?

A morning walk with Lucille is the first thing on my agenda. It’s the middle of winter in good ole’ New England right now so our walks have been really quick! (Lucille hates the cold.) After that, I make myself some tea or hot chocolate, paired with toast or a muffin and a few eggs. Lucille gets her breakfast while mine is cooking, and I usually make an extra egg for her as a treat. As I eat I like to check my social media stuff and reply to blog comments and things like that.

Mondays are my 'prep days' that I spend setting myself up for a smooth productive work week. They’re not exactly scheduled, but here are the things I generally try to complete on Mondays:

1. Thoroughly clean my house and do all the chores that might distract me later.
2. Write out a long list of goals, deadlines, and other general “to-do” things that I want/need to accomplish for the rest of the week.
3. Schedule a few blog posts in advance so I don’t have to worry about blogging during the week.
4. Answer emails and keep up with social media platforms.
5. Research! I have a lot of plans for 2013 as far as new products and things like that, so I’ve been researching and collecting inspiration for styles, fabrics, etc.
6. Work on some personal non shop related sewing – aka ME projects! This helps me get excited and motivated for the rest of the week!
7. I hope it’s obvious that showering and other personal hygiene habits fall on this list somewhere too ;)

I usually do all these things while half watching/mostly listening to a movie or TV show on Netflix. Right now I’m mildly obsessed with 1940’s Film Noir and BBC’s Top Gear! I try not to give myself numerical time frames to work from because I have a terrible concept of time and it frustrates me when I feel like I’m working against the clock. I do however like to keep a general structure to my work day, and that all goes something like this:

Tuesdays and Wednesdays start very much like Mondays, except after I finish breakfast I take a shower straight away and then get right to working. I like to work assembly line style, meaning I’ll spend all of Tuesday cutting out pieces so I can spend the rest of the week sewing them together. I set up the iPad on my sewing table so I can listen to music or some TV while I work, and Lucille settles down for her mid morning nap. This is usually around 10am. I’ll work until lunch time and then make myself some soup or a quick microwave meal. While I eat I check in with Will via Google chat to see how his day is going, and try to beat my brother in Words With Friends (that doesn’t happen often). Then I take Lucille out for a walk. When there isn’t 3 feet of snow on the ground, we like to walk for a mile or so on the trails near our house. As I mentioned, it’s very snowy and cold right now so usually these walks are more of a run to the side yard and back. But when the weather is warmer, I really love a nice long walk with Lucille in the woods. It’s the perfect way to break up the day.

After lunch and a walk, I get back to working and Lucille gets back to napping. I’ll sew, cut, sketch, plan, trace patterns, or whatever I was working on until around 4pm when I take a break until Wil gets home at 5:30. During this time I like to read, knit, or browse around online to clear my head and recharge. Lucille usually starts getting antsy around this time too and decides I need to pay attention to her instead of business. When Will gets home, he’s around to keep her occupied as I finish up a few things before dinner. Will usually cooks unless I have a slow cooker meal ready from that morning (my chicken and biscuits are always a hit!).

After dinner I package up any orders from earlier in the day and put them near Will’s desk for the morning. At this point I’m only selling items that I have pre-made so everything that sells will usually ship the next day. After I write myself a note of where to start for the next morning, the rest of the night is mine. I’ll read, knit, catch up on blogs, or watch an episode of something to relax before bed. Some evenings I’ll go snowboarding for an hour or two after dinner since we live really close to a ski resort! Another perk of living in Vermont ;) Sometimes I like to work later into the night if I’ve gotten a late start that morning, or had errands to run during the day, but usually I’m in bed between 10:00 and 12:30.

On Thursdays and Fridays Will takes Lucille into the office with him so she can have a social day and I can get super focused! It’s hard sometimes to stick to a schedule with her in the house. She’s a very good girl, but she has her needy days just like the rest of us haha ☺ I save the weekends for any product or blog photos that I can’t get without Will’s help, and also for stocking up on supplies. I like to support the local small fabric shops often.

Well, that’s pretty much what my days look like! I’m working on going back to school online for business, so we’ll see how that factors in to the schedule when I start.

I feel very blessed to be able to call this my job, and I’m eager to grow it into a career. Slow and steady wins the race, they say! I have a lot of goals for 2013, including turning a few of my accessories into PDF patterns, selling wholesale to local shops, and designing more fabrics for Spoonflower! I also feel extremely blessed to know so many creative and encouraging women online who have supported me and helped my success. I’m one lucky girl!

Well, thank you so much for reading, and thank you Tilly for having me! It’s been an honor and a pleasure ☺"


Aw it was lovely to have you, Rochelle! Our lifestyles are pretty similar really - I read Bloglovin after dinner, you go snowboarding after dinner... Wait, what?! How awesome is that?!!

Want more Days in the Life? Catch up with previous posts from the likes of Gertie, Tasia Sewaholic, Sublime Stitching, Colette Patterns and many more lovely ladies!