I’ve been sewing since I was a kid. My mother taught me, along with a room full of 4-H ladies with a million opinions. I think my first real project was a sky blue cloud print mini-skirt with sparkles. SPARKLES. It still exists somewhere in my mother’s attic. It was horrific, but it would be the first of many more crimes against fashion I would create and perpetuate in the early 2000s.
Only recently has sewing become something I do thoughtfully. It’s a skill I want to develop not only because it is rare but because I want to reclaim the personality in my clothing and the humanity in what I purchase.
- Sewing is a creative outlet that produces something useful. The product is valuable because it is unique and because it is a useful good. (Unlike the embroidery I am also obsessed with. Shh.)
- Sewing allows one (with reclaimed fabric, two) more degree of control over the manner in which the goods I am purchasing are produced.
- At home sewists can focus on creating quality, timeless garments that last far longer than one season and ultimately consume less.
- Sewing is engineering with fabric! I think because at-home sewing has always been female-dominated, it’s assumed to be easy. But, as Feynman discovered, there can be quite a lot of math.
- Sewing is cool.
My room is filthy and my bed is unmade. I’ve given myself 15 lashes and not done a damn thing about the mess.
This shirt was a first for me- the first time I have ever completed a pattern a second time. I used BurdaStyle’s Hawaiian Shirt pattern in a European size 48. The first time around, I worried that it would dwarf my tall-and-skinny manfriend, the intended recipient, based off of his measurements alone. I had never sewn for a man before, but I learned that they are generally used to a good deal more ease in garments than us gal-folk who’ve grown used to showing off our curves. Both the original Dinosaur Shirt (pictures to come!) and the above Space Shirt are made of standard quilting cotton.
I swear the back band isn’t actually crooked. In the absence of the intended torso, my self-made body-double dressform (with boobs, a large backside, and wonky shoulders) is filling in.
The pattern sewed up with no problems, even though it was my first experience with collars. A point of frustration was Burda’s infamous lack of included seam allowance. It’s a print-at-home pattern. Let me waste my toner on some seam allowances, please! The only other comment on the pattern is that the collar stand/ collar attachment described in the instructions is kind of mental and produces inferior results to this method from Sew, Mama, Sew. I would love to try this in a much more lightweight printed cotton or linen. However, silly novelty prints speak to both myself and my manfriend, and quilters certainly have a monopoly on those. Silly apparel prints, especially in knits, tend toward the infantile.