Monday, February 16, 2015

DIY: Joy of Sewing And Clothes Making

My mum used to make clothes for us. She was not a tailor and she had not taken any tailoring courses. She just learned everything on her own. She had an old Singer's sewing machine which she had received from her mother. Grandma was not a tailor either but she was also a very creative and resourceful lady: during WWII, when shoes were not available in stores, she learned how to make shoes and made them for her children. She could make clothes too.

Mum with her mum
 Anyway, the machine was very good - you could sew anything and everything with it - from a leather school bag and shoes to a thin silky blouse. And mum made us wonderful clothes - all kinds: trousers and jackets, dresses and vests. In the evenings and late in the night she sewed, no matter how tired she was after a work day in the office and doing all the home chores after work. I loved the pieces of clothing she created for me!

When sewing and tailoring magazines appeared in the newspaper kiosks, she also used some of the patterns included in those magazines, to make all kind of fashionable pieces of clothing for us and herself. I especially liked Burda magazine trends, and later, I was also buying it myself.
At some point, I thought that making my own clothes could be fun. After all the years of watching mum while she was sewing, I decided I was ready - bought myself a sewing machine and started my home sewing 'career'. Mum helped me of course, especially at the beginning: I always had problems with fitting the sleeves in a blouse or a jacket, so she sometimes did that for me. Dealing with a lining was not my favorite part either. I simply found finishing the inner, lining part boring. Maybe because the lining is something which is usually not really seen when you wear eg. a jacket.

My sewing was not that kind of masterpiece work which mum did but I enjoyed it although it was a very time-consuming activity. Yes, making a piece of clothing takes rather a lot of time. But I did manage to create quite a few things including shirts, jackets, hats, skirts and dresses. I also learned that little details, for example, buttons, make a difference. It is enough to sew on new, colorful or nicely shaped buttons or a more interesting zipper to change the look of a boring dress or shirt.

The hat made by myself
These days I do not make my own clothes anymore but, thanks to my past sewing experiences, I know what to do with a needle and threads when something needs fixing. From time to time I improve a dress or some other items: shorten or narrow something. However, with no sewing machine and doing everything by hand (when I was moving I had to leave the machine at mum's), completing a simple project lasts ages. That is why I hardly ever sew nowadays.

Some of the clothes I have made.

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