15 March 2012

sew clothes? why not?

My mom was a great mom. Want to know why? Here's one example. When I was, oh, ten or so? She told me that one of the things she admired about me was my ability to finish whatever project I started. Tenacity, focus. Nice, right? .... only, even at that age, I thought to myself, "really? me? oh-kayyy....."  Maybe she really did think I was a great project-finisher, which is fine. She was a wonderful encourager.

But, really. I may finish things from time to time, but I wouldn't say it's a life-defining characteristic. Far from it! I can't tell you how many projects I have pending. From Jacky's long-awaited Farm Quilt, to some wind wands he's about to grow out of, to a Liberty of London quilt I sketched out, to... well, it goes on and on.

And, I'm OK with it. If I spin it positively (why not?), you could say I'm curious. I want to do. I'm a great project starter. Fine.

The other thing my Mom was great at was sewing. She made me many of my favorite pieces of clothing when I was little. Clothes that made me so happy I'd try to wear them every day. Clothes that made me twirl.

So, my latest project? I want to sew some clothes. Yes, I may currently only know how to sew a variety of straight lines, but... why not? I taught myself how to sew those lines, so why not dive in a little further?

And, really, it all started with a couple of cute Japanese books. I mean, a book called I Am Cute Dresses? There's no way I can not buy that. The sewing is so simple that there aren't even patterns. Just a variety of ways of modifying simple shapes, using basic techniques.

I also picked up Simple Modern Sewing, which does have a handful of basic patterns you can modify for dozens of pieces. For a construction novice like me, it's perfect with it's generous explanations of the basics. Like, serious "step zero" information.

So, we'll see? Maybe if I can figure this stuff out, I can move onto "real" stuff like the beautiful Wiksten patterns by Jenny Gordy.

Do you sew clothes? Any tips?


  1. I am DYING to learn how to sew. I love Wikstenmade and I dream of making my own clothes. One day I will learn how to thread my machine. :)

  2. ditto to Kim's comment! I have a machine--just need to use it and learn. That book looks so cool.

  3. dude, i need to bust out the ol' singer - it's my mom's from the day and i love it - cause boy oh boy it's been neglected. as in, i need to brush up on the simplest of seams! but it's long since been a goal of mine to step up my game... these books look inspiring!! can't wait to see what you whip up!! xx

  4. Yes! As a new mom, I find there is no time for shopping about trying to find that "right" outfit with a toddler in tow. I've been really considering making my summer wardrobe this year, but I havnt taken a pattern drafting class in forever - so I pretty much forgot all that jazz. This book looks amazing and right up my ally! Where did you procure it? Summery dresses and flow-y tops are totally my jam right now, especially pretty cotton & linen ones. The price tag for locally make modern lady clothes are kind of outrageous tho (most of the time), and I have a hard time giving them everything in my checkbook (probably a good thing) when I know that if I did a little homework, I could just make it myself! Thanks for this post, It really inspires me to set fourth with my goal of creating a summer wardrobe with love, from home.


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