Monday, July 04, 2022

Thinking about taking up sewing?

 While I am still trying to find the time to get the buttonholes and buttons on that #omigoshthisistakingFOREVER pink twill shirt; I stumbled across an article on the interwebs that has struck a chord. Why Retail Clothes All Look the Same isn't the actual name of the article but it is the theme.   And it contains a link to a clip from The Devil Wears Prada, which is worth a watch, too.

I have long rebelled at the whole 'Colors of the Season' thing...the idea that someone in an office in Manhattan or Paris or London or Tokyo or wherever...has the power to pick what colors the world will wear for the next season/ year.  

It's why I have a ridiculous fabric stash, y'all.  Buy the fabric in the color you love whilst it's available, because in a couple of years you won't be able to find it.

But the idea of the style on repeat...that is one of the best reasons to take up fashion sewing. You don't want puffed sleeves?  You don't have to put them on the dress.  Even if that pattern shows them...just switch it for another one from another pattern.

We don't have to participate in the Fashion Great Chain of Being.

You can find a style that suits you and make it, in fresh fabrics, whenever you want.  It doesn't have to be On Trend to look good.  

Or maybe you like that style that you see, but hate the icky polyester fabric it's made of.

Same deal.  Find a similar pattern (or frankenpattern one from two or three, if necessary) and make it up in a nice silk or linen or cotton or whatever strikes your fancy.

There is SO MUCH information on the internet now...sewing websites like Pattern Review; YouTube videos by the score demonstrating basic skills....even not-so-basic skills.  (One of these days, thanks to YouTube tutorials,  I'm actually going to tackle pad stitching, lol).   A decent sewing machine is not terribly expensive...all you need is one that will do a nice straight stitch and sew a decent buttonhole.  If it will do those things, it will cover all the requirements.  A serger is nice but not necessary...certainly not in the beginning.  A good iron is a must.  

Start with a pull-on skirt; that's almost instant gratification and a good place to learn how to sew a straight seam.  Botch it up?   It's just practice...a learning curve.  Did you pick the wrong fabric for the pattern?  Like, it sticks out instead of swishing?  Or did you pick the wrong size?  You can't assume your ready-to-wear size is what you make in the pattern...heck, you can't even get the same size from one retailer to another in RTW anyway, so don't expect the patterns to be different.  Just measure yourself and the pattern before you cut anything and you should be able to make a fairly educated guess.  You may learn you like more or less room (aka 'ease') in a pattern than what is included.  Trial and error is your friend.  You will learn faster than you think, if you really want to.

Sewing frees you from the People in the Room Who Pick From The Stuff...and from the computer algorithms that are increasingly determining what shows up on the racks in stores and online.  

We don't have to follow their dictation.  We can sew.


  1. Good thoughts, Lisa. So true. Liberate thyself by sewing your own clothes!! Like that. Appreciate you carrying on with your blog.
    Wishing you well,
    C Beckenhaupt

  2. So well articulated, Lisa. Those desks aren't going to tell us sewists what to wear! Sure, we'll follow trends but we do it our way!!!