Do you sew your own clothes? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 6 Old 09-17-2009, 12:39 AM - Thread Starter
 
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If so, can I ask a few questions?

I am looking to sew my own clothes. I have weird proportions. I'm 5'3'', size 18, an have a 42G chest. So think petite, yet plus size proportions with a disproportionately larger top. Yea, getting RTW clothes is super fun.

Anyways, I've got some basic sewing experience and some pattern drafting experience. I think I can tackle skirts easily. However, tops? : Pants?: Dresses????:::

Is it harder to sew/fit those items?

Why did you start sewing your own clothes?

Do you use RTW patterns or draft your own?

I know sewing my own clothes will be more expensive than sale prices at Target (where I currently can afford to shop), but is it less expensive than, say Ann Taylor/more upscale clothing stores? The same?

Also, I am drooling over this skirt: http://www.denimskirts.com/sufllojesk.html

However, I'm hesitant to buy it because I can't try it on first. That, and I know it will most likely be too long for me. Anyone know of a similar pattern? Or is it just easier to buy it & modify it later?

I just finished drafting & sewing a mock up apron for my sis's birthday. It's a cute, 1950s style apron. It wasn't as hard as I thought it would be, even after adding on my own alterations/tweaks. So I'm feeling pretty confident right now.

Thanks!

Ami

Wife to dh, Mommy to my heavenly angel, J (06), and my earthly angels, S (07) and E (10)

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#2 of 6 Old 09-17-2009, 02:45 AM
 
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I'd buy it and if it's too long hem it. Just the cost of buying that much denim for a skirt your size will be a good chunk of money and sewing a lovely skirt like that with a zipper fly, belt loops, and such lovely curves will be a daunting task unless your a really good seamstress.
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#3 of 6 Old 09-17-2009, 06:18 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by feest View Post
I'd buy it and if it's too long hem it. Just the cost of buying that much denim for a skirt your size will be a good chunk of money and sewing a lovely skirt like that with a zipper fly, belt loops, and such lovely curves will be a daunting task unless your a really good seamstress.
I guess, but if I never stretch, I won't grow.

I wasn't thinking of making an exact replica. I would most likely not do a waistband, and put in an invisible zipper either at the side or back. However, the curves are daunting. Especially on denim. Any other fabric and I'd be game. I do have an old 1950s straight stitch workhorse, so denim *shouldn't* be an issue. But curves.....ack. I agree though, trying to recreate the waistband with belt loops & fly--no thanks!

I'm afraid of shortening it with all the curves--if I have to cut off too much, won't it look 'odd'?

(As for amount of fabric, I have a fabric warehouse near me and if that doesn't have good prices, there's always a 40% off coupon on Joanns. )

It is a lovely skirt though.



Ami

Wife to dh, Mommy to my heavenly angel, J (06), and my earthly angels, S (07) and E (10)

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#4 of 6 Old 09-17-2009, 08:36 PM
 
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Hi Ami! I say go for it! Start out with simple patterns ( the fewer the pattern pieces the easier) and less expensive fabric and work your way up as your skill set improves. A novice can whip up t-shirts- which means you could do tank tops, short sleeves, 3/4 length sleeves and long sleeves. For pants I'd start with yoga pants, flannel pj bottoms, and skirts. Tackle pants that need more details and fitting when you've got a bit more sewing experience. Then skirts and dresses offer lots- I especially love wrap dresses.

Instead of "big 3" patterns ( simplicity, butterick, mccalls) I prefer Kwik sew, ottobre, burda patterns. Imo they are better quality and the fit is way better- which make their higher cost worth it, especially since I'll use the same pattern over and over. They all have plus size patterns available.

If you already know from a lifetime of rtw clothes not fitting you that you'd benefit from being able to make your own- get going You can do it as cheaply or expensively as you want. Will you spend a little more than Target? easliy- but Ann Taylor? not often.
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#5 of 6 Old 09-20-2009, 04:23 AM
 
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I think that skirts are ideal for a beginner (IMO there are just fewer discouraging fit issues than with pants or a fitted shirt, you know?) - especially A-line skirts. I do think the skirt you linked to is a bit daunting for a beginner, but if you're brave, go for it! Sewing is NOT HARD. You just need a pattern of some kind and a willingness to think through the steps logically. You can do it!

I thought I remembered a Simplicity pattern with somewhat similar swirly curves, but I can't find it. It may be OOP? If you'd like to try something in sort of the same silhouette, but easier, I might try starting with something like this:

http://www.simplicity.com/p-2276-misses-skirts.aspx

You could totally do View B in a lightweight denim. It wouldn't be anything near a copy of the skirt you linked to, but it would be very achievable and you'd be likely to end up with something you'd be happy wearing.

Science-loving mama to one little guy (11/09).
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#6 of 6 Old 09-21-2009, 12:54 AM
 
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I sew a few things for myself and a lot for my daughter (11/07). I prefer the older patterns, 60s and 70s because they tend to be made with more clever finishing techniques and more versatility.

Usually I end up making the first one 'to the pattern' and finding all the things I dislike about how it fits on me or on DD - and then altering it for the second time around with better results. Buying really cheap plain (even ugly.. sometimes) fabric that is still the right weight is a good way to learn a lot and test out any pattern quickly.

~Marie @ KnitOwl
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