As a child, I watched my grandmother sew for people out of the home, without much use for patterns. That's talent! I entered the apparel industry in 1976 as a "helper" in a large cloth cutting room. I spent 5 years there. Being replaced by a micro chip (computerized cutting) after advancing to be a cutter, I went on to learn sample production, marking, grading and the very computer that replaced me. In 1988, I started doing occasional freelance work for various companies. From 1988 through 1992,1 performed services for 2 lingerie companies, a robe company, a children's wear start up company, a knit shirt company, and others. Also, I taught seminars on pattern grading at North Carolina State University.