When I first started sewing, one of the most discouraging things I heard was “It just isn’t worth it to sew clothes.” The argument was: by the time you buy your fabric, pattern, and spend tons of time working on the garment, it isn’t even worth it. It made sense so for the most part I stayed away from sewing clothes. I dipped my toes in a tiny bit with free patterns or a tutorial on pintrest claiming it was easy and would be like the next best thing in your wardrobe. After a few half hearted attempts, I decided they were right, it just wasn’t worth it. My clothes didn’t fit right and they looked slapped together, and I wasn’t comfortable wearing them. I put time into them and then never wore them.
That was then, now I disagree strongly. If you have the right information and the right understanding of sewing clothes and you like doing it, it is so worth it! My thinking began to change after I had Kina. I still wasn’t ready to sew clothes for myself, but seemed so expensive. After walking into Carters looking for jeggings one day I walked out determined to make her clothes. I decided this as I was staring at a pair of baby jeggings for $8 on sale. I was like shoot, I can buy a whole yard of fabric for $10 and make like tons of pairs for her size! So I went home and scoured the internet for jegging fabric. I found some at Girl Charlee and bought it.
From that day I really began to become interested in sewing for Kina. I drafted a dress for Kina for a family members wedding and then proceeded to draft my own dress for the same wedding. Shortly after I bought Pattern Workshop to teach me how to draft my own patterns on Illustrator. It has been a snowball effect since. The more I began sewing for myself and Kina the more I realized that it wasn’t about the time and money put into sewing clothes.
One argument against sewing clothes is how much it costs. People say by the time you buy your fabric it is going to be more expensive than just going to Target and buying a shirt. Yes, buying off the clearance rack or at places like Target many times will be cheaper than buying fabric. It just all depends what you compare it to. In reality once you become good at sewing clothes, a handmade shirt and a ready made shirt at target are not even comparable. You just created a custom fitting garment to fit specifically your body. Can you imagine how much you would have to pay someone to make you a custom fitting shirt? Many times we buy ready made outfits, that fit but don’t really fit. You know that feeling of “well my clothes fit, but they could fit better.” If you take the time to learn about altering patterns to get the right fit and to make a muslin before sewing your garment, you will get a perfect fit for way cheaper than you could ever pay someone. By sewing clothes yourself you can create exactly what you want tailored to fit you. For me I didn’t really understand the difference until I actually started getting better at sewing myself clothes. I used to believe that it was just cheaper and easier to buy ready made clothes. Now I am finding that the quality and freedom I get from sewing my own clothes is worth so much more than a great deal. I don’t believe a handmade garment can be compared to Target’s clothing. I believe a handmade garment needs to be compared to high end clothing. When you think about it that way and see the price tags of designer clothes, you may just change your mind on the whole sewing clothes is expensive thing!
The second main argument I have heard is “it just takes to much time”. I am not a huge lover of shopping. By the time I wander around the store trying to decide if I like this dress or not, I could have sewn my own custom fitting garment. I think it is all in what we compare it to. I don’t like going to malls and shopping. I would much rather spend my time behind the sewing machine. Sewing is my therapy. It is what I love to do. So for me to spend my time sewing a garment, is not a waste at all. The amazing feeling I get when I complete a garment is far above purchasing clothes at the mall. It is a very rewarding feeling, one you won’t get from simply buying something. So if you like to sew and have a desire to make your own clothes, time will not be an issue for you!
The last huge argument I hear is “I could never sew.” Whether is is a simple straight line to a entire garment, I hear people use this argument all the time. I used to be one that said that. I believed I could never be creative or skilled enough to sew. I had a desire to try but never really believed I could. What I found out is it takes small steps and it takes patience. When I first started sewing, my projects were not that good. I have seen myself slowly improving over time. I also have a great husband who encouraged me to keep going. When I wanted to say this is for the birds, he would tell me try again you got this. Between my husband and my Bernina machine I have found the skill and encouragement needed to keep me going. My point is, don’t ever think you can’t do it. Try, learn, and keep going. I will be your biggest cheerleader! I think the huge thing with sewing is don’t give up right away. When you don’t know what you are doing and your machine eats your fabric and you really just want to throw it out the window, it can be easy to say that is just to hard. But once you learn more about sewing and practice more, you will find out, it really is not that hard!
I whole heartedly believe that sewing clothes is so worth it. But let me pre-warn you, once you get started you won’t be able to stop 🙂
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