About Det HT

Hi my name is Nhi, the sewist behind Detective Houndstooth.

I’m a maker at heart.  From beaded jewelry to anaglyph 3D cards, from homemade preserve to paper flowers, I love making things.  And I just added screen printing to my maker list. Of course, I screen printed my Elna Grasshopper.Screen printing

Speaking of sewing machines, I somehow have acquired 2 Elna Grasshoppers, an Elna Carina Electronic SU Duplex, a Kenmore serger 385.something and a Brothers 2340CV Coverstitch.

Elna Grasshopper

Elna Carina

Prior to my fleet I only had an $80 Kenmore open box special from Sears.  And special it was.  This plasticy beauty made it through car upholstery, Tootsie Roll neck roll pillows, curtains and 6 moves.



My first machine was actually my mom’s.  It was an industrial Juki, the kind that will sew through my 7 year old hands. Yes, 7, my mom had A LOT of faith in me.

So what possessed my mom to have me sew on this machine so young?  Necessity.  We were refugees after the Vietnam War and fortunately we made our way to the US.  But as a struggling immigrant family my mom had to work 3 jobs, one of them being a factory sewer.  She could work at home while watching 3 young kids.  As her helper my job was to turn collars and tubes, unpick and cut apart her chain of pieces sewn together like bunting.  I soon graduated to sewing straight lines.

Pieces chained together

Later in life when my mom stopped sewing piecework, we still sewed together most weekends.  She drafted her own pattern with a piece of chalk on fabric and fitted as she went.  I picked up a lot sewing know-how from my mom but have venture into more aspects of sewing than she ever did.  I’ve sewn all the usual suspects: garments, purses, home dec, costumes, lingerie and a few unusual suspects: car upholstery,  theater curtains, bunny slippers.  What will I tackle next?  You’ll have to follow along to see…


Happy sewing,


e-mail: detectivehoundstooth@gmail.com
twitter: @nhi2huynh