Recently, I heard that there was a potential student who wanted to take a class, but is hesitating for fear she would take on another craft that she just doesn't use. I thought about it, because I can really relate to that problem. I really don't oil paint anymore, even though even though I spent 4 years learning it and I have my undergraduate degree in painting and drawing. I really don't knit anymore because I like crochet more. And I only really get to make one quilt a year, if I'm lucky.
But sewing really can, and I think should- be more than just another hobby. You are learning a technical skill that can help you improve many areas of your life. Here are five reason's why you won't regret learning how to sew.
1. when you know how to sew, you can repair and alter your own clothing.
How many things have you thrown away or donated, just because you don’t know how to repair them? Most repairs are no big deal. I had an alterations client bring me a pair of pants with the crotch seam ripped out. Now, that’s usually the worst and is usually grounds for tossing- but it seriously took me 5 minutes to repair, and really it only took 5 minutes because I had to get the sewing machine out and change the color of the thread. Sewing time was 1 minute. The cost of the pants? $78. Without the repair, she would have thrown them out, or donated them, and then have to buy new pants. Instead, a 5 minute fix saved her the time it takes to find new pants, and the money spent on not just one- put too pairs of pants.
2. Your clothes will look and fit so much better.
How many things do you have in your closet that you roll up? Pants that are too long, sleeves that are too long, dress and skirt hems that aren’t the right length for your height. How many times have you had to get your gowns altered for bridesmaid dresses or events? How much did that cost and what was the hassle factor? I bet you have a story, because I've heard them! These are things that you can do if you know how to sew. And your wardrobe will thank you. Alterations are not something to be afraid of, most of them are pretty simple and quick. When you learn how to do them, they really don’t have to take up too much time and you will look so much better in your clothes when you make them fit your unique shape and height.
3. You can make custom things for your home.
Our Fast and Fun Interiors class has been a hit- its reinspired me to make new textiles for my home. When I was into quilting, that was the only thing I would make, but lately since we are holding sewing for interior design classes, I’m totally inspired to make some fast and beautiful things that make my home more fun and livable. Recently, I was visiting a friend, and she had beautiful table linens. I was setting her table, and realizing I could make these linen napkins in 1 hour, and I would be so much happier when I eat. I like using cloth napkins- I try not to make paper waste when I can avoid it- but I’ve been using the jankiest, wine stained, plain cloth napkins! I was totally inspired to make better ones- right away. This is only going to take an hour, to get something that’s all mine and custom for my home, and is another money saver for sewists on a budget like myself.
4. costumes and Kid's Clothes.
Some of my favorite memories are when my mom made my costumes for Halloween- I was Miss Piggy, a Gypsy, a Witch, and I wore them not just on Halloween. She sewed me my own Carebear! And my own awesome 80’s print overalls that I wore with my lime green sweatshirt. I will never forget these pieces she made for me, and watching her make them inspired me to be doing what I do now. And you don’t have to have kids to have a need for a custom costume- right?
5. Sewing is good for your brain
Sewing is not mindless, it involves problem solving and critical thinking skills. When you practice sewing, you learn 3D construction, and the process of sewing improves your focus and hand eye coordination. Its like model building, furniture design, or home construction- you get a plan and process and go step by step. Its good for you to use your mind this way, that’s why many people find it relaxing.
In conclusion, sewing is utilitarian. Really, it does not have to be a passive hobby when you have the luxury of time. All of the 5 reasons you won't regret learning how to sew, feature ideas that are not hard or time consuming projects. I love to crochet, but I really have to dedicate 20 hours to do a project. Same with some of my other creative skills. But with sewing, I can do something in an hour and it’s always very useful and I’m happy when I’m done. Unlike other construction crafts, you don’t have to have a lot of stuff to get started. And cloth is readily available- there are many ways to get your hands on materials to work with that fit your concept and your budget.