Meet the Sewing Influencer - Lindsey of Inside the Hem
Hello! If you want to get caught up on my series about #SewingInfluencers, you can go back to the beginning here.
I have spent so much time learning about the world of influencers in the creative community that it felt like a natural next step to start talking to the people and businesses who are influencing me!
First up in this series is Lindsey Johns of the YouTube Channel Inside the Hem. I’ve been watching Inside the Hem for years and I love the community that Lindsey has created on her channel. I reached out to Lindsey after I began my series about influencers in the sewing community as I have seen Lindsey take her channel to a new level of professionalism especially over the last year. She has been so supportive of my series and was extremely receptive my request to interview her for a feature.
Please enjoy this interview with Lindsey!
1. What does it mean to you to be called an "influencer”?
To me, being an influencer is not just building an audience and selling products to them. With Inside The Hem, I’m constantly working to stitch (pun intended) together a brand’s goals and my audiences needs. I want to empower, motivate and inspire the sewing and crafting community while also helping the companies that serve our community reach their goals and grow their businesses. I am not pandering to my audience or simply pushing products on them. Instead, I’m evaluating each opportunity with each brand ensuring that everyone is winning: myself, the brands, and my audience.
2. Do you remember which business you first worked with as an influencer? Did you approach the business or did they reach out to you?
I will never forget those companies that took a chance on a YouTube channel with fewer than 1,000 subscribers. My first sponsors were brands that I was using at the time including McCall Pattern Company, Blank Slate Patterns, Style Maker Fabrics, Cotton Cuts, Cali Fabrics and others. I still work with many of these brands today and truly cherish our relationship.
For the companies that I worked with in the beginning it was very much a "hail mary" situation. I knew I had a channel that was growing quickly with a lot of dedicated viewers that were really appreciating what I was doing online. With that confidence, I reached out to most of them myself. It was a long-shot and I was so grateful any of them even replied to my emails, much less deciding to work with me.
Now-a-days, lots of brands reach out to me, but I spend a lot of time working on Business Development for Inside The Hem as well. It is much closer to an Inside Sales job than anything else at this point.
3. What do you want the readers to know about the influencer business in the sewing or lifestyle industries?
Geez: there are so many things. Let’s start with four:
This is my job. I want to make sure that everyone understands that this is my full-time job. It is not a hobby or side hustle. This is how I make my living.
I actually test and approve each product before it makes it to Inside The Hem:
I never accept a sponsorship from a product that I don’t actually think is helpful to my audience. Sewing-related or not, I want my audience to love the products they buy on my suggestion and working to build that trust between my audience and myself is the most precious part of being an influencer.
I’m not sewing all day.
There are so many stereotypes when it comes to influencers thanks to the mega-influencers out there…the Kardashians, the Bachelor franchisees, and Bravo-lebrities to name a few. But, as a micro-influencer (someone with fewer than 100k followers), what I’m doing is hard work. I can’t just strap on a waist-trainer and bring in a months salary. I work hard at this every day (even the weekends) and most of my time **is not** spent sewing. Actually, I have less time for that than I ever have.
This is the hardest job I’ve ever had!
The sewing industry is not well known for being on the cutting edge of anything. To have a company understand and be willing to invest in influencer marketing is quite a feat. On the other hand, as made evident by this blog post, to have an audience see sponsored content and trust the influencer enough to purchase product is also quite the undertaking. I am walking a tight-rope between the brand and the audience and I work very hard to make sure all of my content is balanced, beneficial to both parties, and ultimately moving the sewing industry forward from both sides.
Thank you so much to Lindsey for being a part of my series on Sewing Influencers. Do you have questions for Lindsey? Please feel free to drop them in the comment box and I will make sure Lindsey sees them!
You can find Lindsey posting regularly on her YouTube channel, Inside the Hem. Her monthly makes, reviews of recently released patterns, sew-alongs, favorite sewing tool reviews, and so much more are some of my favorite videos to watch when I’m sewing and knitting.
I will also encourage you to follow Lindsey on Instagram where she shares her makes, fun challenges and collaborations, and even occasionally pictures of her adorable dog. She also has a website where she has contact information for future collaborations!
Want to hear from more influencers in our sewing and making community? Let me know in the comments who you would like me to interview next?