When I was a little girl, my parents bought me a sewing machine. My mom and I spent hours touching all the fabric in Joann Fabrics we could, and crouching over the sewing machine set up on our dining room table -- and spilling lots of tears as we grappled over this pattern or that. Neither of us had really found our groove with sewing, and after a few failed projects (and one miraculously beautiful halter top), the sewing machine sat forgotten for a few years. When I graduated from college and moved out, though, I brought it with me. I was determined to tackle sewing again, and make my mom proud.
I had done a few small projects here and there, but a few weeks ago, I finished sewing my first piece of clothing for my adult self: a pair of high-waisted bikini bottoms (above; see them in action here and here). I made them using a vintage lingerie pattern I found at a thrift store for $2 -- and yes, there were a few tears. These are actually the second effort; my first did not use stretchy fabric, and there was no way they were getting over my hips (who knew a vintage size 12 did not equate to a today size 6?). I found solace with this stretchy knit jersey fabric from Joann's (not exactly traditional bathing suit material, but I'm not a big swimmer at all so I wasn't worried about it getting wet). I was nervous wearing them in Provincetown, but proud that they were something I had produced myself, that nobody else was wearing, that had saved me money. And my mom is pretty proud, too.
Well -- despite having thoroughly mucked up the bra portion of the vintage pattern -- now I want to sew all kinds of things! Here are a few patterns I've got my eye on (most of which are free):
- Sleeping pad for camping
- A tunic dress that would be the perfect beach cover-up
- Triangle quilt
- A tunic top
- The perfect summer skirt (with pockets!)
- Shift dresses
- Summer swing dress
- A running belt (to store your phone, keys, etc.)
- Peter Pan collar tee
- Pajama pants from vintage sheets
- Maxi skirts
- A traditional rag doll
- Maxi dress
- Floor poufs
- The sweetest zipper pouch
- Pencil skirt
So what do you think? Do you sew your own clothes, gifts, or things around the house? Am I the only one who's spilled a tear or two over my sewing machine?