Sabrina Clementine is a construction project manager by day, and a garment construction entrepreneur by night. Born and raised in Miami, Sabrina is a Colombian-American and knows a little something about creativity and being a tía (or tití, like Bad Bunny would say).
As the owner of the handmade clothing boutique Be My Clementine, Sabrina’s legacy is seen in the confianza she gives her clients through their clothing. Clothing can conjure confidence!
We also discuss how to deal with chismosos and why sewing Instagram is the place to be.
Find Sabrina online at:
- On Instagram as @SabrinaClementineSews
- Be My Clementine store
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In this episode:
- 1:47 – Sabrina on Instagram
- 2:02 – Sabrina’s store: Be My Clementine
- Episodes mentioned:
- 16:12 – Table for Four Podcast: conversation about legacy
[00:00] Paulette: Buen día y welcome to The Maker Muse Podcast, the place where childfree Spanglish speaking mujeres fuertes are inspired to find their confidence, su confianza, through creativity. I’m Paulette Erato the Maker Muse.
[00:18] Today I’m chatting with Sabrina Clementine, an online seamstress and handmade clothing entrepreneur. We met on what we’re calling sewing Instagram, which is that little corner of the internet where everyone is welcome because we all make clothes, no matter how good or how bad you are at it.
[00:36] So you’re gonna hear us talk about that and maybe even try to recruit you to it. But what we’re really gonna get into today is the big tía energy, because tías and primas hold a very special place in the Latine family, which we’ll get into too. Oh, but as a courtesy to my non-Spanglish speaking audience, I use the words tía and tití interchangeably.
[00:58] Half of my family says tití when they refer to an auntie. The other half say tía, neither one of them is wrong. They are both correct. However, if you were familiar with the Bad Bunny song, Tití Me Preguntó, you already knew this.
[01:10] Hi today. I’m here with Sabrina Clementine. Hi Sabrina. How are you?
[01:14] Sabrina: Hey, I’m doing great. How are you Paulette?
[01:16] Paulette: I’m wonderful. Thank you. I’m so glad you’re here. You are a Columbian American, correct?
[01:22] Sabrina: That’s correct.
[01:23] Paulette: Born and raised in Miami.
[01:24] Sabrina: Yep.
[01:25] Paulette: And you are one of a couple interviewees I’ve had that are from Florida.
[01:30] Sabrina: Nice.
[01:31] Paulette: So Sabrina, we met on Instagram because sewing Instagram is one of the best places on the internet, right?
[01:37] Sabrina: Absolutely.
[01:39] Paulette: We love sewing Instagram, but why don’t you introduce yourself? Talk a little bit about yourself.
[01:44] Sabrina: All right. Like you said, I’m Sabrina. I go by Sabrina Clementine on Instagram, Sabrina Clementine Sews is my personal sewing account. I have a full-time job. I work as an assistant project manager in building construction.
[01:56] And by night I do garment construction. In addition to, um, my own personal sewing, I also have my own business. It’s called Be My Clementine and I make, um, handmade skirts and accessories for anyone that is tired of blending in, wants to stand out and just wants to express themselves through their clothes.
[02:13] Paulette: And it’s really cute stuff.
[02:15] Sabrina: Thank you.
[02:15] Paulette: What we talk about on this show is the unique experience of other childfree Latinas. Being childfree is the least interesting thing about me. I’m gonna assume it’s the same for you.
[02:24] Sabrina: Absolutely agree.
[02:25] Paulette: But there’s a, a real lack of representation of childfree Latinas out there. So that’s what we’re here for. We’re here to represent. This is where you come in. Like tell us what it’s been like for.
[02:36] Sabrina: Comparing some stories with other people, I , I think my experience hasn’t been as negative as I’ve heard some people. You know, in the beginning, you know, once my parents realized, you know, we had the conversation, I’m not gonna have any kids, guys.
[02:48] This is not of my plans. I’m sorry. But once they, they kind of accepted that, I, I don’t get that pressure from my parents. But it’s everyone else in our community and in our family. I have a big family, family, friends. That’s kind of where, you know, you get the inappropriate questions, like, so why don’t you have kids? Aren’t you gonna be 40 soon?
[03:08] Ai Yay. Yay.
[03:10] So yeah, my family’s pretty respectful, but I, I think, and I don’t wanna generalize, but as a whole, you know, Latinos tend to tend to be a little in your business. Little chismosos.
[03:20] Paulette: Chismosos that’s a good one. Yep. Yep.
[03:23] Sabrina: But yeah, usually, you know, I’ve gotten to the point where I can just clearly say no, I, I don’t have kids, no plan on having kids. And I’m happy with that. And people kind of sense. All right. That’s that’s it, that’s as far as I can take this conversation.
[03:36] Paulette: It’s in the delivery.
[03:37] Sabrina: Yeah.
[03:37] Paulette: You’re confident enough in yourself and you know yourself that you leave no room for discussion to continue. It’s like, this is the period on the end of this sentence.
[03:49] Sabrina: I have heard stories from friends. You know, that their, their parents are constantly guilting them into wanting to have children. Or asking them, you know, you’re not make me a grandparent. Um, but luckily it also helps that I have an older sister. I have two nieces and a nephew, so that’s helped kind of take that pressure off. So I haven’t felt the pressure too much, which is great.
[04:09] Paulette: So yeah, I have two brothers too, and they, they both have children who I love dearly.
[04:13] Sabrina: Absolutely.
[04:14] Paulette: That’s another misconception about people like us, that we hate kids. That is one stereotype I would really like to get rid of.
[04:21] Sabrina: Absolutely. Yeah.
[04:22] Paulette: There are all kinds of people. And some people who have children hate children. So, you know, that is, is not relegated to one side or the other. And also it’s not an us versus them situation.
[04:34] Sabrina: Exactly. Yeah.
[04:35] Paulette: I think that’s another thing we want to eradicate. So how long have you known, you know, like one day you woke up and you’re like, yeah, no, I’m not gonna do that. Or was this something you just always kind of knew?
[04:45] Sabrina: It’s funny that I didn’t always realize it was an option. And that just makes me sad. I’d say it was when I was in about my mid twenties. When I moved out of my parents house started realizing that there’s other options than getting married. You know, as soon as you get out of college and starting a family, it just kind of dawned on me that, oh, I, I have an option.
[05:04] I don’t have to pump out the kids by the time I’m 28 so that I can, you know, do this and that. It’s my choice. And so once I started thinking about that, realizing I had a choice it’s I think my life can be complete without children. That’s when, you know, the thought started coming through, but I didn’t fully realize like, “I’m good, I’m not gonna have children” until probably my early thirties.
[05:24] Yeah. And just the, the whole maternal instinct of hearing a baby cry somewhere and wanting to, you know, like, oh, I wish I had one of my, that was never me. I, I, I love my niece and nephew to death. Um, nieces and nephew to death, but never have I had the, I, I can’t wait for this to be me. I can’t wait to have children of my own. So…
[05:41] Paulette: I get it.
[05:42] Like my guest, Jess Chavolla from episode 16, Sabrina is also in a male dominated field. Construction. Listen, as we talk about how this might have impacted her decision to not have kids.
[05:53] You’re in a male dominated field, right in construction?
[05:56] Sabrina: That is true.
[05:58] Paulette:Do you think that in any way influences you?
[06:01] Sabrina: Possibly maybe. I mean, maybe subconsciously. Um, you know, thinking about it now we do have a good number of women in our company. But I mean, that, that might be it cuz even through high school, you know, I was taking engineering classes, math classes, and it was always very male dominated. I am very feminine though.
[06:17] So I’m not sure. And that might just be overcompensating for my, you know, nine to five being very masculine geared.
[06:26] Paulette: Well I mean, it’s, it’s okay to have both, right?
[06:28] Sabrina: Exactly. Yeah.
[06:29] Paulette: That’s what we call balance. Yeah, no, I was just curious because construction, you think of just like big burly men and you’re not that, so I just, I just, I was curious.
[06:39] Sabrina: That’s a very interesting point. And I’m, I’m kind of curious if it did have an influence.
[06:44] Paulette: So do you have a partner and are they on board with it? I would hope they’re on board with this.
[06:48] Sabrina: Yes. I do have a partner of 10 years. And that was also one of the things that kind of helped cement it, you know, once it was clear, you know, he also didn’t want children.
[06:58] I was like, all right, cool. I’m I’m on board with this. And I definitely feel the same. Whereas, you know, if I kind of feel like it wouldn’t have gone on , if there’s that, that difference in, in priorities, in what you want. Um, it’s extremely important to, to be on the same page. So.
[07:14] Paulette: Absolutely. I was talking with another person and we were saying how our society does not do a good job of portraying, first of all, childless couples on TV.
[07:24] It’s always like, you’re just expecting that to happen. But also having those discussions prior to marriage or prior to a long-term commitment. And like for me, I, I was just a couple of months into my relationship with my now husband. And I was like, you need to understand how serious I am about this, because if you thought having kids and all of that was in your future, then we don’t have one together.
[07:47] And I really honestly didn’t believe him when he said, yeah, I’m on board. Because, um, nobody else had ever reacted that way. So yeah, it, it took me a while for me, for him to convince me that he agreed. I just, I just wanted us both to be, I wanted him to feel as strongly about it as did. Otherwise, I mean, that’s a deal breaker.
[08:11] Sabrina: Oh, of course.
[08:12] Paulette: You know, you can’t give someone children if you don’t want them or you shouldn’t. Right.
[08:17] Sabrina: Yeah. No.
[08:18] Paulette: Like my guest Isabel and I discussed in the last episode, there’s a lot of guilt and shaming around not having children, especially in Latine families. Coincidentally, both Isabel and Sabrina are Colombians, which I didn’t even realize when I had them on.
[08:32] Sabrina: It brings me to, um, the point of guilt, you know, which my parents tried to give me early on. Or, or people would tell me you aren’t gonna give your parents grandchildren. And I just don’t think guilt is a sufficient motivator to bring a child into this world.
[08:48] Paulette: You’re talking about an entire human being and sometimes multiple.
[08:53] Sabrina: Not a puppy. And even that’s a big deal.
[08:55] Paulette: It’s not a puppy. It’s not. Yeah. It’s a grander responsibility and guilt shouldn’t be the motivator, but I know a lot of people fall into that trap. And that’s why we’re having these conversations because it’s okay to know yourself. This is what I call peak adulting.
[09:11] Sabrina: Yes.
[09:11] Paulette: You’re a peak adult when you know your limit.
[09:15] Sabrina: Yeah.
[09:16] Paulette: Another interviewee was like, I think childfree women are the most self-aware. Because we’ve made this conscious choice. Like for those of us who are no longer on the fence or, you know, I know some women still kind of wonder, well, maybe, but for those of us having this conversation, we are not on the fence.
[09:31] We are firmly on one side and, and we know that about ourselves. It’s like, I know I’m, right-handed.
[09:36] Sabrina: I’m actually lefthanded!
[09:37] Paulette: Are you lefthanded?
[09:38] Sabrina: I am.
[09:39] Paulette: Oh, wow. You’re a triple minority. Because lefthanded people are like, there’s so few of you in this world. You must have special scissors and stuff in your cutting room. Right?
[09:48] Sabrina: I do. I love scissors. That might be why I’m obsessed with them. Yeah.
[09:53] Paulette: So one of the bingos we get a lot is how we’re gonna regret it when we’re older and lonely. So adoption is sometimes trotted out as an option for people who don’t want to bear children and Sabrina and I touch on that. But here’s the thing.
[10:07] Adoption is an option and it takes a certain type of person to do that. But it’s an option for people who want children, not those of us who chose not to have them. Is this really that hard to understand? Sabrina jokes that she’ll just get a puppy, which itself is a lot of work. But her real point here is that there are other ways to provide support and maternal energy without being an actual parent. Team Titís all the way.
[10:36] Sabrina: Regret’s another one. You know what, if you regret not having one? Well, what if you regret having one? You can’t do anything once you’ve had the child.
[10:46] Paulette: Right. And imagine growing up, knowing that your parents didn’t want you.
[10:51] Sabrina: Yeah. And there’s, and there’s so many options. You know, I, I know adoption isn’t easy, but that, you know, people ask me what, if you regret when you’re past the childbearing age? I, I can adopt. Um, my joke response is always, I can get a puppy.
[11:06] Paulette: Well, but that’s also true. You were just saying puppies are a lot of work.
[11:09] Sabrina: I said, again, my nieces and nephew. You know, I can, there’s, there’s different ways to be maternal, I guess. You don’t have to be somebody’s mother to, to mother them to provide that.
[11:18] If you know, I find it’s lacking later. There’s there’s many children out in the world that are lacking attention or, you know, there’s things you can do later on in life versus having a child out of guilt and changing your mind.
[11:31] Paulette: Guilt and regret are two of the worst reasons to bring a whole live person into this world.
[11:37] Sabrina: Yes.
[11:38] Paulette: You mentioned something about your niece and nephews, your nieces and nephews. For me, it’s niece and nephews. Tell me if, if this was true for you. For me, they were kind of like my surrogate kids, because like in the office, when other people were talking about their kids, I’ve seen this in a lot of childfree discussions where people feel left out, cuz they have nothing to contribute to that conversation.
[11:58] Some people use their pets as the stand-in. But for me it was my niece and nephews because they were around the same age as other people’s kids in my office. But it was cool because I’m like, oh yeah, I have a niece and nephew I can spoil.
[12:10] Sabrina: Absolutely. That’s the best part.
[12:12] Paulette: Have these conversa. Yeah. Right. Have these conversations. Did you find that that helped for you too? Or was that not even something you needed to worry?
[12:20] Sabrina: Well, they’re, they’re still pretty young. Um, yeah, like at work, I mean our, where I work, it’s pretty young. Um, but yeah, I definitely, I mean, now I have friends that are, you know, friends are starting to have children and my niece, my youngest niece is also young.
[12:33] So, so yeah, I do connect with them on that. I’m like, oh yeah. I remember when, you know, my niece is going through that phase and she did this and that.
[12:39] Paulette: Being an auntie, like all of mis tías, this is your secondary support system.
[12:44] Sabrina: Yes.
[12:44] Paulette: Like, we are just as important in the development of, of, of our family members’ lives. Because when they can’t talk to their parents, who are they turning to?
[12:53] Sabrina: Yeah. And that that’s one thing I, I, like I said, they’re still young. The oldest one is gonna be nine this year. So I try to show them, Hey, I’m here for you. So, you know, if at least remembering my, my youth, can’t always go to your mom for everything. So it’s, it’s good to have somebody, you know, an alternate option to vent to, but yeah, tías are everything.
[13:10] And, you know, I only have one sister, but I have a ton of cousins and we’re all their tías.
[13:15] Paulette: Mm-hmm mm-hmm. I just hung out with family this weekend and they’re like, Tía this Tía that. They’re teenagers and going off to college and all of this stuff. They’re like, Tía. And they, you know, they’re asking for advice and I’m like, yes, I am here for that.
[13:30] For those of you listening, who, um, who maybe feel left out of those conversations, if you do have niblings don’t forget you fill an important role in their lives too.
[13:40] Sabrina: Absolutely. Yeah.
[13:41] Paulette: And if you don’t have niblings that’s okay too. That’s less money you’re gonna spend.
[13:46] Sabrina: Like I said, now, now we’re have, we have friends that are starting to have kids. And so we, we get to spoil them as well, so.
[13:52] Paulette: And that’s the thing, that’s what we get to say. Right? We get to spoil them.
[13:56] Sabrina: Exactly. Diapers are expensive, so we’re not, since we’re not spending money on that. We’re.
[14:02] Paulette: Well, that’s another thing. People always tend to think that then we’re rich because we don’t have children. And that’s another one of those like busy body questions that maybe you don’t ask childfree people, or just don’t assume about them.
[14:16] Sabrina: Exactly.
[14:18] Paulette: Or don’t judge them for how they spend their money. People are allowed to spend the money the way they wanna spend their money.
[14:23] Sabrina: Yeah. I’m, I’m definitely not rich. But I, I recently got another tattoo. So, they’re like you spend how much on that?
[14:30] Paulette: Nunya.
[14:31] Sabrina: Exactly. That’s how much I spent.
[14:33] Paulette: Nunya. I remember hearing that at an early age. I thought that was actually a Spanish word. Nunya. Uh, it was the Puerto Rican side of my family that used it. That’s why I assumed, nunya.
[14:43] I finally figured out I meant none of your business. For those of you listening, who didn’t get that.
[14:50] In case you haven’t noticed, everyone on this program makes something. The entire premise of the show is that everyone is a maker. Some like Sabrina makes stuff with their hands, but everyone on this show has contributed something to this world.
[15:04] They have made something. Here’s more on that from Sabrina and how she realized she didn’t have to be good at everything. Sound familiar?
[15:14] All right, Sabrina. So what else are you making these days? We’ve talked about your store and you make garments. Is there something else that you pour all of your creative energy into?
[15:23] Sabrina: Lately it’s been mostly sewing, but I’m a collector of hobbies if I’m honest. So I recently took a macrame class, um, loved it. I’m trying not to buy a bunch of cord to play with. But yeah, I tend to dabble in different, different crafts and, and I just love learning new things, even if I’m not great at it. That part used to be difficult.
[15:44] But the more the more things you try, the more you realize I’m not gonna be good at everything. I have been wanting to, um, start teaching.
[15:51] Paulette: Mm-hmm.
[15:51] Sabrina: So that’s kind of next on my, my sight lines. To, to start doing one-on-one sewing classes or small group classes locally. We’ll see how I develop that.
[16:01] Paulette: That’s so fun. And you’re in Miami, right?
[16:05] Sabrina: I am, yes.
[16:06] Paulette: Well, let us know if that starts happening soon and we can update the show notes with people,
[16:10] Sabrina: Absolutely.
[16:10] Paulette:To get you some business.
[16:12] Paulette: And now onto legacy, my favorite. Here’s another common theme from nearly everyone. They talk about the impact we’re having now. I love this and even expanded on it myself, on someone else’s podcast, which I’ll link to in the show notes. Listen here to Sabrina’s take.
[16:27] Sabrina: Well, I mean, legacy is one of those words. I it’s a big word. I, I’m not one of those people that likes to think too far, too far out, too far ahead. It kind of gives me a little bit of anxiety. Um, so I mean, what I think of when I think legacy is, you know, the people around me, I have a whole community around me.
[16:46] I have my nieces and nephew. Just basically day to day interactions. I think how you make somebody feel, how you, maybe give somebody a little extra confidence or something can snowball maybe, or have a what’s the, the butterfly effect. And I, I don’t think I need to do something big and grand to make a difference.
[17:08] I, I think it’s more important what the people around me, how I’m affecting their lives and how, you know, what they get from our interactions. I’d say that would be my legacy.
[17:19] Paulette: That’s beautiful. And legacy is a loaded word, right? We think like our name has to be on some building somewhere.
[17:24] Sabrina: Exactly. Yeah.
[17:26] Paulette: And it doesn’t have to be that. Legacy is about the people that you affect.
[17:29] Sabrina: Well, even through my business, you know, I’m not gonna pretend I’m like making a huge difference, but if I can brighten somebody’s
[17:37] Paulette: Wait, wait, wait, can I stop you right there?
[17:39] Sabrina: Sure.
[17:40] Paulette: Do you know that you’re not making a big difference?
[17:43] Sabrina: Well, I mean, on a global scale.
[17:45] Paulette: Okay but.
[17:46] Sabrina: Big difference. But yeah, exactly. Like you’re, you’re get kind of getting to it, you know, if it, it kind of seems silly, but clothes can have a big effect on the person that’s wearing it.
[17:54] So, you know, if I can give somebody a little confidence when they’re going to a tough meeting or, you know, on a first date or going to a book club, it’s, it’s silly, but it’s life. And if I can make a difference there, I think I’d be happy with.
[18:08] Paulette: Pretty sure. You’re making a difference. You have customers, they buy from you for that reason, right?
[18:13] Because your stuff is different. It’s not like you’re gonna walk into The Gap or Target and see it. Right.
[18:17] Sabrina: That’s the goal.
[18:19] Paulette: You’re making a difference in someone’s lives and that’s awesome. That’s awesome. And it’s awesome that also you recognize that. You’re like my legacy doesn’t have to be this big overarching thing that affects the world.
[18:27] My legacy is how I make people feel now. And there’s that saying that if people don’t remember what you say to them, but how you make them feel.
[18:36] Sabrina: Yep.
[18:36] Paulette: Yeah. Our emotions are a big driver and part of what we don’t recognize in our, in our lives is that how much our emotions affect how we remember things.
[18:47] Sabrina: Mm-hmm
[18:48] Paulette: So if you make someone feel good, they’re gonna have a good positive memory. And, and at the end of the day, what more can you ask for?
[18:55] Sabrina: Yeah.
[18:56] Paulette: You’re putting good goodness out into the world. I’m very proud of you.
[19:00] Sabrina: Thank you. Thank you so much.
[19:01] Paulette: So is there anything else as a childfree Latina that you want listeners to know? Is there anything you would wanna say to younger Sabrina about where you are in life now?
[19:15] Sabrina: Just start being yourself sooner, at least. And I think back to my early twenties and trying to be, even, even before that, trying to be cool, you know, trying to win the your attention of others. It just, it doesn’t matter.
[19:28] The people, your people are gonna find, you just be yourself and. I mean, we couldn’t have known how, how much the internet is gonna bring our communities together, but it did. And, and people talk about I’m going off on a tangent. Now a lot of people talk about the, the negative effects of Instagram on the body image and, you know, self image and comparisons.
[19:47] But I mean, that’s how I met you. It’s how I met many of my friends. You know, it’s, it’s great. You know, being able to find your, your people, people that just vibe with you. So…
[19:57] Paulette: Mm-hmm. I think that’s another great thing about sewing Instagram specifically, is that it has been about inclusivity since the moment I found it six years ago.
[20:09] There have been huge pushes to make it that way. I remember watching this in real time, in like 2017 where it was like sizing needs to be, has to exist in larger sizes. You know, we aren’t all B cups with 30 inch waists. What happens when you have to make a really big, full bust adjustment. And for those of you listening, who dunno what any of this means, it’s about making clothes fit your body, not just a mannequin.
[20:36] Sabrina: Yeah, that’s a whole, I could talk about that for, for an hour. If you ever need someone to talk just body imagery. Um, and especially, especially as a Latina, um.
[20:47] Paulette: Yes, we will have this conversation. We will have a part two with Sabrina Clementine, because that is definitely something that we need to have more honest discussions about, unfiltered discussions around.
[21:01] I do not look like JLo and, and, and I’m okay with that because I’m old enough now that I’ve gotten comfortable in my body and this body can lift a lot of really heavy weight. And I’m proud of her. I find a lot of strength and power in the fact that I can do that. But at the same time again, bringing it back to sewing Instagram, you don’t have to look like JLo to be accepted amongst these people. And that’s been really nice.
[21:30] Sabrina: Yeah, absolutely. Getting warm fuzzies is just thinking about it.
[21:33] Paulette: I kind of went off on a tangent there didn’t I? Well, everybody should join sewing Instagram. Everybody should sew their own clothes
[21:43] Sabrina: Or at least try it once.
[21:44] Paulette: Uh, it’s not easy. I’m not gonna lie, but you know, it is rewarding. It is very rewarding.
[21:49] Sabrina: Absolutely. It is.
[21:52] Paulette: So Sabrina, thank you so much for your time today. I have really enjoyed having this chat with you.
[21:58] Sabrina: Thank you for having me.
[22:00] Paulette: Thank you to sewing Instagram for bringing us together.
[22:03] Sabrina: Yes.
[22:04] Paulette: And so if you wanna check out Sabrina’s garments and wanna see her store, we’ll have that in the show notes. So you’ve listened to the show before.
[22:13] Sabrina: Yep.
[22:13] Paulette: You know how we end this, right?
[22:15] Sabrina: I sure do. And that’s a burrito.
[22:18] Wanna talk about this week’s episode, feel free to DM me on Instagram. My info is always in the show notes. And if you’re looking to be a guest in the future for The Maker Muse Podcast, check out the guest form on my website at themakermuse.co.
[22:31] Paulette: Yes, themakermuse.co it’s also linked in the show notes. And hey muchisimas gracias for listening to another episode of The Maker Muse Podcast. Are you subscribed? If not now would be a great time to do that. New episodes come out every Tuesday. I’m on Apple, on Spotify, wherever you listen. And then can I ask you a favor?
[22:52] Could you please tell all of your friends and family about it? ¿Sus amigues, su familia? Because if you love it, they probably will too. And I’d really appreciate it if you could rate and review it wherever you’re listening, right now. ¡Hasta la proxima!