Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Why Sew?

These days, it is no longer necessary to sew in order to fill your wardrobe with clothing. The options are endless: on the low end you have Walmart, Target, etc.; in the middle you have Gap, Banana Republic, J. Crew, Madewell, etc.; while the top end is filled with designer labels such as Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Prada and so on.

The pros are: there are easily available basics in a range of price levels, the cons are: everyone looks like everyone else (boring!). If you're looking for individuality, you can hit thrift stores or try out independent designers, but you may not have the patience for thrifting nor the funds for indie labels.

I believe this is where home sewing fills a niche in today's society.

Do you love vintage clothes, but hate the smell or lack of availability in your size? Pattern companies have re-issued vintage patterns in a variety of sizes and styles (this is the easiest route). You can also search out the original patterns on sites such as etsy or ebay if you're a more standard size or want authenticity in your creations.

Want to create a look that is truly yours? Indie designers such as Wiksten and Megan Nielsen are now releasing patterns of their designs that you can purchase in either a hard copy or digital download (instant gratification!).

Have champagne taste on a ramen budget? The big 4 pattern companies (Vogue, McCall, Butterick and Simplicity) collaborate with designers on a regular basis giving you more options than ever before.

Ultimately, you are limited by your own imagination when it comes to creating pieces for your wardrobe. In fact, you could take it even further and challenge yourself to create your entire wardrobe.

 If you've never sewn before, I highly recommend taking a class or finding a friend or relative who knows how to teach you. If that is not an option, there are many how-to books out there, and youtube.com has some great tutorials. The most important thing you need to learn when first learning to sew is how to sew in a straight line. Once you can do that, everything else will follow.

No matter where you go on your DIY journey, there is nothing more satisfying than saying, "I made this!"