I’ve had a lot of people ask me what inspired me to start sewing. I would say that my biggest inspiration was my mother. She made everything from shorts to bathing suits, prom dresses to wedding dresses. Yet, she never actually taught me how to sew.
The first outfit I ever made was around the age of 10 or 11. Outside of simply sewn items, I attempted a dress for my baby sister. In that aspect, I guess people could say I’ve been sewing for awhile unless I can actually pass for being decades younger.
With that, I believe anyone can learn to sew…even if you’re older and believe that it’s “too late.” When is it ever too late for anything? It’s never too late until you are no longer walking this earth!
I have plaid fascination, and I always get disturbed when I look at the men’s or boy’s clothing racks and see that they get these cool looking, Bermuda style shorts while women and girls are given these short shorts that aren’t necessarily what they want or SHOULD be wearing. I don’t believe in dressing my young children that way, and I certainly wouldn’t plague anyone I know with having to see me in them. With that, I headed to the fabric store to find some plaid fabric to create these beautiful shorts for my daughters. Plaid is great because it permits you to wear a variety of t-shirts with it, AND, who is going to notice when you dump sauce on yourself?
To the beginners, my advice is, when you’re first starting out sewing, choose simple items to make. Believe it or not, one of the simpler things you can make are shorts. Look for patterns that not only indicate they’re easy sewing, but have elastic waists. If they have pockets, for the first round, you can eliminate them. Why? First, for many of us with hips, pockets aren’t always our friends. Second, shorts and long pants with elastic waists consist of two pattern pieces. Two pattern pieces = EASY. Fifteen equals MORE ADVANCED SEWING. So, find an easy pattern with an elastic waist to give it a go, and I think you’ll be pleased with the results.
While you’re working on the clothing, follow instructions carefully, and iron while you’re going along. When I was younger, I made the mistake of rushing through things and not ironing seams prior to sewing them. I can’t say what I made looked worse than something store bought because many store bought items are made on the cheap, but you still get better looking results from ironing.
Also, when buying patterns, look for something that will always be in style. I used a pattern from over ten years ago to make my children shorts this year. Last year, I used one that my mother used for my younger two sisters (who are now in their 30’s). The only difference in shorts between then and now would be the fabric chosen as long as the pattern wasn’t following a current trend.
The shorts above have pockets installed. My kids begged for them. I don’t know why. I should know better. Take the time when I went to wash the laundry, and the kids yelled as I was reaching my hand into the pockets, “Make sure you take the pet worms out, Mom!!!” Yet, another reason to eliminate the pockets….