Hola! This post is a little different from the usual DIY that goes up. With all of the encouragement and awesome comments from everyone in person and online, people are always telling me they wish they could do it too and are even saying they’re inspired by me to learn! How cool is that?? So I thought it’d be cool to share the perks of sewing and how I can become ‘slightly’ obsessed with it!
The Perks of Sewing: Why Sew?
Despite the fact that I love doing it, I often find myself wondering, “why don’t you just go buy something instead?” The debate is real, my friends. Truthfully, sometimes it feels as though it would just be easier to walk in the store and pick something up. But when I get my head out of the sand, I am reminded of why I’d rather design my own outfit instead…
A Unique Wardrobe
I can’t even tell you the amount of times I’ve shown up wearing the same thing as someone else. One time, I went to a wedding and three other girls wore the same dress. THREE!! It was awful and has sort of instilled a bit of fear in me. Being able to sew gives me the opportunity to create a very unique one-of-a-kind wardrobe that no one else has. Not to mention, the time it takes for me to go searching for something is often more than the time it takes for me to buy fabric and make it!
Good Quality Vs Not-So-Good Quality
As my skills have grown over the last year and a bit, so has my standard for what I do purchase. I’m able to look at a garment and see right away if it’s been constructed well and if the price is worth it. The other day I saw a lovely dress for $138, but as soon as I flipped it inside-out, I could see how poorly it was made and opted to put it down. Before I learned to sew, I wasn’t willing to spend a lot on individual pieces because I didn’t understand the value of it, but now if I’m in a position where I need to buy something, I know when I’m getting my money’s worth.
My Creative Outlet
As you may or may not know by now, I work in TV & film and have been doing it since my good ol’ high school days. It’s a cool world where creativity has the ability to roam free, but there are often far too many cooks in the kitchen and it can feel like your ideas gets stifled.
Sewing on the other hand, gives me the space to dream up whatever I want and just go for it, which is incredibly exciting! Now, this might sound a little silly and even a bit dramatic, but the adrenaline that gets going when a vision comes to mind, knowing that you can actually create it is real! It’s a total release to bring something to life. Seriously though…if I don’t do it, I feel like I’m going to self combust with all the ideas…But the best part of it is that no one is there to interfere. It’s all up to me and something I can completely call my own!
Window coverings on set of “Taylor Swift 1989” used to make the Sarah Shirt below.
Women have never had more choices on what to wear. But while there are so many options available and I’m always inspired by what I see out there, sewing has allowed me to be in complete and utter control of how I dress my body. A part of me feels like a bit of a rebel by opting to design something of my own instead of falling for ads and magazines that tell me what’s hot, what’s in right now and what I should wear.
Just recently, photographer George Meris asked me how I would describe the clothes I make. I realized that I couldn’t lump it into any single category simply because I make whatever I feel like wearing. To have that much control over my own style is absolutely liberating!
Sewing requires patience and focus. It forces me to forget everything else happening. On days where there’s a lot running around in my mind while I’m at the machine, I can almost guarantee mistakes are going to be made. In these instances, I have to take a moment to breathe and collect myself so I can focus on the task at hand. It is immediately calming ends up turning into a source of meditation for me.
The Challenge Is Real
Sewing and designing gets easier with practise, but make no mistake – it always stimulates the mind and requires resourcefulness. I’m constantly pushing myself to make something better or more complicated, experimenting with new looks and fabrics. I tire quickly after sewing because of how much focus it takes to figure how to turn a design in my mind into a pattern that actually works. It can be exhausting, if I’m honest…but absolutely satisfying when I see how far along I’ve come!
The Perks of Sewing and Why It’s a Rewarding Skill
I couldn’t agree with you more! I learned to sew in home-ec class (1968!) but because no one in my family sewed (my mother thought it was ridiculous and the notion of wearing something that looked “home-made” appalling) I didn’t have any other supports or a sewing machine to practice on. My home-ec classes ended in high school and it wasn’t until my last year of high school in a different city that I discovered an evening sewing class that I quickly jumped on. My mom gave up and bought a sewing machine 🙂 BUT years of busy-ness, university, professional work, a broken sewing machine and it fell by the wayside. For my 60th birthday (2 years ago) my husband (having listened to all my moaning about having let sewing fall away) suggested we go out and set me up with a real sewing area – machines, tables, courses the works. I was thrilled and went at it with a true warrior artistic spirit. It has done wonders for my memory (which has returned brilliantly much to my delight) my ability to problem solve – it has made me considerably brighter which has added enormous benefit to every other aspect of my life. So not only do I get to make, own and wear clothes I love out of fabric I lust over that fit me EXACTLY the way I like (I’m 5’8″) I’ve stimulated my brain back to awake and fully functioning. It’s been such a win I’ve become rather evangelical about it to be honest. So thank you for this post and inspiring others to follow in your footsteps.
I consider sewing as my meditation too! 🙌😄
right?! love your stuff! keep it up Jocy! 😀
You dress too cute while sewing at home! Most of us never get out of our PJs(they’re easier to remove when trying on over and over). Just found your website and enjoy it very much. Look forward to more. Yvonne Madden
LOL! I tend to wear dresses that I can easily change out of now! thank you for your kind words Yvonne!
You forgot the most important thing: POCKETS. Seriously, there is a pocket crisis with women’s fashion. People are impressed when I tell them I made the dress I wearing, but they lose their mind when I say “and it has pockets”
But also, as a mom of three boys under 5, I barely have time to shop for myself, and certainly wouldn’t be able to try things on without all my “helpers”. My skill level has improved enough that I can grade and fit a pattern to my ever changing body so it fits the first time I put it on instead of getting frustrated and beat myself up with fit challenges at the store.
yessss pockets!!!! I can’t believe that you can grade/fit so easily! that’s unbelievable. Definitely a skill I wish I had!