I don´t want this anymore.
I had this thought about 15 years ago and maybe you think alike. Black hair, black bedroom walls, colourful thoughts.
Buying new clothes was a horrorstory for me and for my mother. I didn´t like anything, or just a few things.
How to change that? I started searching in the really different internet of 2005 and found the solution in a (back then) frumpy hobby: sewing clothes!
Little by little, it became clear that I have found my ersonal holy grail. This freedom, this anarchy, I can do what I want! I´m gonna sew that myself now, Mama!
It´s just dear to my heart to emphasize the benefits and the accomplishments of selfmade clothing because I believe it has a great effect - on you, on me and, if I think about it, on everyone else too.
Your desired quality
Quality is something you partly search for in vain nowadays. At least in the typical stores on german pedestrian areas. The price of a garment isn´t very decisive, that is to say.
How´s this, imagine you can influence fabric and workmanship in a kind of way that creates something beautiful and durable? Just sew it!
By now, it became harder to differ between high and lower quality fabrics for sure. I will wrrite about this in another post. I just have to say, you can only win when you dedicate your time and patience to build a premium workmanship.
Who doesn´t know the twisted side seams of a shirt or pants? Actually, it isn´t the worst idea of the industry. But it´s badly executed... The pattern pieces got slightly rotated on the fabric to save yardage. And of course, to get more pattern pieces out of the yardage and save money. In doing so, the grainline can´t be straight to the selvage anymore and the garment will get a twist later on.
And as side seams at your belly button aren´t a thing the garment gets tossed after only a fwe uses. Not cool.
What is quality exactly? That´s likely dependant on the person you´re talking to. But generally speaking we are aiming for long-living garments that look good even after years of use. To achieve this you need high-quality goods, a good workmanship and an adequate care.
The care is (mostly) up to you anyway.
High-grade workmanships are such things as french seams, facings, blindstitched hems, but also even seams. Just everything that isn´t sewn with a "hot needle" and the clock watching over you.
So,you can actively affect the parameters of durability and a good look of your DIY clothing. Even more, you know exactly what fabric, yarn and accessories you will process.
Your perfect fit
Your new jeans fits perfectly. It´s not too tight at the leg and not too loose at the waist. And the fabric feels really nice and stretchy.
You found THE pair of pants... just to discover that this particular type of jeans won´t get prouced anymore... boom!
Everyone who ever tried something on in these small and glaring changing rooms knows that at home, it´ll look quite differently.
We do that differently while sewing. Sizes? Only exist to find the right size to start from.
Your straight shoulder? No problem. Asymmetric hips? We can work with that! Okay, maybethe first skirt maybe won´t be perfect, but with time you´ll learn the perks of your body and how to adjust the fit accordingly. A different kind of body positivity, isn´t it? Fuck these ever changing sizes and create your own!
I adjust nearly every pattern to my personal needs and measurements. Some need more adjustments, some less.
THE very reason I started sewing in the first place.
And I´m still fascinated by the thought of doing what I want. Sewing is punk! With some limitations given by the model and/or fabric, would´ve been a fine thing...
Don´t get deluded, everyone wants to be unique. Everyone is unique for my sake. And through the sort of clothing we wear, we can easily show this because the clothing is the first thing we notice on a person.
And even close-by we (unconciously) assess people by their outfits. Uh, I once sat opposite of a solicitor who wore a really badly conditioned dress shirt. All hems were fraying and he whole colour was greyish. I was super disappointed, this dress shirt ruined his visual professionality totally.
We express an affiliation or restrain ourselves from a distinct group. How great was it when I was finally able to sew many, many black and studded skirts or tops with leopardprint. Of course, there were onlineshops for goth and punk clothing back then, but it was too expensive or too exaggerated for my taste.
So, I became partly independent of irritating clothing stores and this invited me to get experimental and creative.
Okay, sorry, this isn´t all peace, love and motivation here. but I want you to know that the fashion industry is one of the dirtiest in the world.
A good book about this topic is this here (sorry, german) Reading it gave me a lot more background information and reliable numbers about the fashion industry.
Yes, fabric and haberdashery have to be produced too, but nowhere near enough to be compared to the sheer amount of produced goods from fashion suppliers.
Additionally, I think more and more sewing people tend to more sustainable and fair fabrics. What brings us back to the quality of fabrics. They want high-quality and environment friendly fabrics without pesticide residues or other dubious evaporations. And on top of that, fair wages and treatment of the workers producing the goods. And this is damn good!
"You made that?!"
Even after years and my environment knowing what I do, this disbelieving question got asked frequently when I wear selfmade clothes.
And I´m still fine about this!
I think you wear your selfmade clothes in a very different way. With confidence and pride.
But also when something went wrong and you were on the verge of throwing that damn sewing machine out of the window... you fought your way through it and finished that project! Be proud, you can do something that many people can´t! You can sew your own clothes!
Phew, was it motivating? I hope your head is exploding with new vigour and ideas right now! Did I forget something? What was your turning point to start sewing?
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