Saturday, 12 January 2013

What has sewing done for me (and could do for you)?

I've been sewing for probably about 5 years, let's see, Mad men was first on TV in the UK in 2008 maybe, so it must have been around then that I suddenly realised I didn't have to put up with buying all the clothes that weren't quite right from shops that were all wrong, and I too could dress like Joanie (if I so dared) or Betty.

Since then, I've learned oh so much, made way too much and had a blast. It's really in the last three years, since I've been living in Beirut that sewing has come to be so central to me, it's not only my hobby now, it's my job. And so, inspired by SallieOh's comments about her sewing ....I thought I'd break down what sewing has done for me.
·         Numero uno and probably most importantly for me, it's stopped me shopping! Not that I was some out of control shopping freak, just your usual, shopping on a Saturday type of girl. But it's been two years now I haven't bought a single piece of clothing from a high street shop - I have bought some second hand things and maybe one or two things from independent shops. This makes me so happy. I'm eternally grateful that I was able to get off the consumer treadmill, it has made me so mindful of all the shopping I now do and I have become so much more conscientious about my consumption habits. This year, and after reading Overdressed, I'm not buying fabric. I swear! 

·         Like Sallie mentions sewing has definitely got me feeling better about my self-image. Going into shops like H&M and Topshop and having to try on clothes that don’t fit doesn't really help a girl feel good about herself. Now that I make my own clothes I don't ever consider "sizes". I know my measurements and I know how to make clothes fit me properly. I'm not self conscious about my ample booty any more, clothes go over it these days and don't gape around the waist like they used to...and that's because I made them the right shape. I think that's pretty cool. 
Never thought I could wear a wiggle dress, but I love this one!
·         I feel like I really have my own style these days. I feel like my clothes really express something about me. I'm not just wearing a version of what everyone else is wearing because I like the fabric but not the style so much, or I like the style but the fabric is "meh". Everything I wear is something I chose because it says something about what I love. I am the most me version of me in my me-made clothes! 
·         I feel like I'm constantly learning and I like that. Having been a teacher all my working life, I really like the feeling of always learning. Sewing gives me that. I feel there's so much more to master that I can never consider myself an expert. 
first time i sewed in a lining!
·         I take pride in my achievements, like, all the time! I go round just beaming with pride at how cool and lovely my clothes are! And when I make something for someone else, woah, the pride (some might say all this pride might warrant a fall...lets hope not!)
Add sewed for someone else- very proud me!
There's probably loads more to say, but I'll stop there for today. Safe to say, that as we all knew, sewing is all kinds of brilliant, amazeballs and fun! Oh yeah, and that's not even with me mentioning that sewing has given me a job, a business and an income. What? That's crazy amounts of things sewing has done for me! What has it done for you? Or if you're not there yet, what could it do for you?!


  1. You got me all excited to pull out that green dress that's been waiting to be finished! It's true though, I'm never happier than when someone says they love my dresses and I proudly say that I made it! And that's all thanks to you, Layla. Your passion finds a way to stay with your students and they are forever infected with your love for sewing (and cats!)

  2. What a lovely post!!!! Thanks so much for sharing all the ways sewing has had a positive impact on your life. Wishing you lots of happy sewing going forward xxx


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