Sewing as fabric engineering

20170318_131733I sometimes feel that “sewing” isn’t quite descriptive enough to describe my hobby. I know lots of people who sew – people who hem pants and make curtains and will occasionally buy a pattern and make a garment. While I do those things, too, I get the most satisfaction out of sewing when I am sewing to solve a problem.

20170213_193623One of the biggest reasons I began sewing was so that I could make exactly what I wanted to wear (my mom isn’t much of a shopper and as a kid I wasn’t brave enough to tell her I didn’t want to wear the same jeans and baggy grey t-shirts she did). Later, I continued to sew so that I make garments fit exactly as I wanted.

20170112_172758Lately, I find myself sewing so that I can create perfect pieces – the exact style I want in the exact fabric I like which fits perfectly and boasts practical features that make them infinitely wearable. Since learning the rudiments of pattern alteration, I find I get the most pleasure in adapting patterns to be exactly what I want them to be (whereas, when I was younger, I sort of guessed and made a lot of big mistakes). There is something meditative in the mathematical precision required to move seams and the thrill of using several very specialized tools and rulers.

Winter outerwear is not easy when very pregnant

Most recently, I find myself confronted with very specific clothing problems to solve – going on a snowshoe winter camping trip while 6 months pregnant poses very specific outerwear challenges. Moving forward, I’m going to have a whole new slew of issues to sew around: post-baby body, baby wearing and nursing. I’m already thinking of creative ways to deal with those issues.

Mostly, I love that I can add pockets to any skirt or dress, add a zipper to a pullover, add a peter pan collar, adapt my current wardrobe for maternity, and recreate expensive designer garments I love.




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