Wow, sewing sure seems to have made a popular comeback!
Let's debunk some common misconceptions about sewing and the people who do it. Whether you're new to sewing or a seasoned seamstress, you may have heard some of these tall tales. Let's put an end to them, now. Since more people are sewing nowadays, it'll be easier to make new sewing friends. Yay!
Let's dive into some myths and bust them up!
1. Sewing is for old ladies
A common sewing myth is that sewing is for an older generation only. I'm here to tell ya, more young people are learning how to sew. And, men sew too. My husband learned to sew when I put him to work for mask making. If you don't know where to start, you can find online classes, head to your local college and sewing shops, or even ask a friend to teach you. Sewing people are everywhere, you just gotta look.
I have taught a handful of friends and family that I don't consider "old ladies". Although, I do refer to sewing as one of my old lady hobbies. LOL. Oh and kids sew too. I have taught all 4 of my kids to sew at a young age. It's a good life skill to have and it's not being taught in school anymore. Here's an article I found online about young people sewing more and more. I'm not crazy, I swear! Sewing is for everyone.
2. Sewing is cheap
LOL! I always laugh at this one. Sewing is often more expensive. A lot more expensive.
Making something from start to finish is costly. You walk into the fabric store and buy a pattern (or online) for roughly $12. You need a minimum of 1-2 yards (for most garments) of fabric which costs roughly $20+. A spool of electric blue thread to match your new fabric, $3. You need a new pack of needles too, $5. Not to mention the price you paid for your machine and all those other glorious notions you've put hard-earned money into. The cost is $40+ just for the 4 items I mentioned. And, I didn't include the price for your time. Time is money and you know it doesn't take 10 minutes to whip up a dress for little Suzie.
You can buy a nice top or pair of shorts for $25 at a big box retail shop.
This misconception always gets me and it hurts my feelings sometimes. I love making gifts but, I've gotten looks and questions asking why I didn't buy something instead. Sigh. It takes a lot of time and energy to sew something. It ends up costing more than if you purchased the same item in the store, usually.
Let's spread the word and lay this myth to rest.
First, I'll share some back story about my own bra journey. I wear a weird size. I can't walk into Target, Wal-Mart, or Macy's and just buy a bra. I have a small ribcage and large... um... blessings. So, I order bras online and pay a ridiculous amount for them. They aren't made any better than what you can find at Target, etc. But, they carry more unique sizes, so I go with that route. I made my first bra last year and it was mind-blowing! It was also extremely easy, cost-efficient, and even fun (once I got the fit down).
Up-cycle Your Brand New Brassiere
So, a few weeks ago, I was walking through Dollar General and grabbed a large bra. I said to myself, I bet I could alter this band size to make it smaller. I held the foam cup up to me and it seemed to be the right cup size. I gave the cashier my $7.00 and drove home. When I got home, I tried it on and had my husband help mark where I would cut the band, to fit my back. I thought Eureka! This is the coolest bra hack ever and I need to share it!!
Side note: I don't think this will work as easily if you need to increase the bra size. This is more of a cut and slash downsizing bra project. I wear a small band, large cup. If you have a small cup, it may be more difficult to do this bra hack.
My, oh my, the summer has flown by. I cannot believe we're almost halfway through August. Someone stop the clock, please!!
We've spent plenty of time in our backyard this summer. Sprinklers, popsicles, and slip n slides, takin' it back old school style.
This month started with me participating in the #BRAugust challenge, hosted by Ying from Tailor Made Shop. She has a website, a blog, and an Etsy shop. I purchased bra making kits from her in the past. She is a sewist who creates and sells beautiful things for the lingerie sewing world. Yay for bra making!! Although, for the challenge, I did not make a bra. I opted to make a swimsuit. I've never made a swimsuit and I needed a new challenge.
Follow along as I sew a 50's style swimsuit
Make sure you practice stitching on your serger and or sewing machine first. My differential feed was on, on my serger. Below is a picture of the serger settings I used. I have a Brother Lock 1143DW which I believe is similar to the 1034D. Even if you have this machine, test stitch on a swatch piece first. Every machine is different. I mainly used my serger but did have to use the sewing machine to make gathering stitches, basting stitches, and to sew on the elastic.
Do you have a fabric designer or pattern maker you simply adore? Maybe you have a few.
Gretchen Hirsch aka Gertie is one of my favorites.
There are quite a few fabric designers I'm obsessed with! Almost stalker-status. ;) I love almost every piece they design. And I must own it all. Insert fabric hoarding music. Haha!
As you might know, my favorite pattern designer is Gertie. She is a one-woman show and encouraged me (through her blog, tv, and books) to start sewing things for myself. GASP! Moms can sew for themselves? Yes, yes we can.
I was watching a PBS sewing show and she popped up. I can't remember what she shared on the show. But, I couldn't get past the fact that she didn't look like a typical sewing lady. She was young and had a fun style. I was instantly hooked! I found her blog, bought her books, and started a new sewing journey-sewing for myself. I still sew for my kids and shop, but I LOVE making my things more.
Gertie has her own pattern company, along with fabrics designed by her. She also has patterns with Butterick and Simplicity. Charms Patterns, Simplicity and, Butterick patterns. I love it all!
40's Style Blouse
The top I'm wearing above is from the book, Gertie Sews Vintage Casual. It's the 40's-Style Blouse made using the Sleeveless Blouse variation, pg 134.
The fit is great in this top! Why haven't I made more? I don't know but, I need to.
It was an easy afternoon project. I made this top a few years ago during a friendly sewing day. This was my first top with center buttons and a placket. As you can see, they should have been placed 1/2" closer to the edge.
Oh well. I still wear it all the time.
It's an easy style to wear over pants or tucked in. The darts are placed perfectly and make for a very flattering fit.
The fabric is semi sheer in black with pink bows and was purchased from Joann fabrics. It is from Gertie's fabric line.
I increased the armscye area. I don't consider myself to have large arms, but her patterns are usually tight in my armpits, so I size up with sleeveless patterns.
I made this cute handbag as a fun little distraction during quarantine. I planned on using it sooner than later, but we all know how that turned out. Ha! Days turned into weeks and it's all a blur from there.
I had some marine vinyl leftover from another project and I came up with this little purse.
Want to make a cute little handbag for your next shopping trip?
Here's what you need:
Hi there, I'm Annette and I love eating and sewing. I usually have a cup of coffee or tea with me, but not next to my machine because I'd probably spill it. I am the reason we can't have nice things.
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