This post will share my best recommendations for learning how to sew with the best expert advice I can round up for my readers. Sewing saves money, is creative, fun, and is much easier than people think. Learn how to sew below!
Sewing is one of those skills that people think will be really difficult, expensive, and time-consuming. Actually, sewing is none of those things.
Sewing is really pretty easy- especially if you have someone to show you STEP BY STEP what to do. I have had the pleasure of being a senior project mentor for several young ladies and teaching another person to sew has made me realize that good, clear instructions make sewing more fun and effective for everyone. Teaching made me a better sewist!
Sewing saves a lot of money. Knowing how to hem pants, repair a tear, create a skirt instead of buying one, or copy a dress you own instead of splurging on a second save untold dollars for those who can sew. It is SO NICE being able to sit down and quickly take up the straps on my first grader’s top because they “aren’t RIGHT!!!” *cue whining voice* so that they ARE right. Sewing allows me to make a garment more modest, more flattering, and last longer. I routinely buy clothes for my kids a full 2 sizes too big and just sit down right after they’ve been washed and take them up and in until they grow into them, at which point I get my seam ripper out and let them out again. Not to toot my own mending horn, but my husband’s work jeans have lasted…and lasted….and lasted. His buddies have sent stacks of jeans home with him and it’s a favor I gladly will do; so few people know how to sew and it is such a quick and easy thing!
Sewing projects don’t have to take a lot of time. I mean, sometimes I will reward myself for a busy week by sewing a Saturday away but most of my projects are quick; a pair of stretchy baby pants (the cutest thing a beginner could sew, probably) can be completely done in probably 20 minutes, even if you’re a brand new beginner. I made all our cloth napkins years ago to reduce waste and after I cut the squares out, I just sewed the hem around each one whenever I had 5 minutes. It took a week of 5-minute snippets, but here I am 8 years later, wiping kid faces with those hemmed napkins and they only took me a few minutes to sew.
Today, my kids are (almost) 5 & 7 and they love to help me at the machine and it is really fun to include them in what’s I’m working on.
I’ve shared a handful of my sewing projects here on The Domestic Wildflower; here are a few:
but I have to say that way before I started my blog, and when I was starting to sew beyond a pattern and search then-very new Pinterest for ideas, I found my all-time-favorite blogger, Merrick of Merrick’s Art. I found a tutorial of hers where she took a man’s polo and cut the collar off, took in the sides, and completely changed the neckline. It was adorable, and I copied it and wore it to work.
I’ve been a teacher for 11 years now (I can hardly believe it) and I can say with certainty a few things. I’m very particular about how I’m taught anything, and Merrick is easy to learn from.
She’s a natural sewist AND a natural teacher.
Merrick and her friend Leanne, another fantastic blogger at www.elleapparel.com created a sewing video course that you NEED to take if you want to learn to sew this year.
Learn How To Sew
If you’ve never sewed before, dive into the Beginner’s Course. In it you’ll learn about your sewing machine, different stitches and what they do, needles (which I think is VERY important in terms of success or failure with different fabrics!), hemming (hello, the most useful thing ever!), waistband creation, and how to make a skirt.
In the Intermediate Course you’ll learn about sergers, darts (the seams that make a garment fitted and look amazing on any body shape), POCKETS (after this lesson EVERYTHING you sew will have pockets, I promise!), pleats, standard and invisible zippers, inserting sleeves, non-elastic waistbands, professional necklines, and how to sew a simple but impressive shift dress.
The courses can be purchased individually or separately but I want to be sure you understand how transferable the skills are in each course. Not ONLY will you be able to sew your own perfectly fitting clothes, but you can also use these skills to sew:
- Baby clothes
- Reusable shopping totes
- Halloween costumes
- Cloth napkins
And you can alter
- Costumes or dance recital outfits (I do this for all my daughter’s friends)
- The ankle/hem of pants & jeans
- baggy tees with no shape
- bridesmaid or formal dresses- you’ll save SO much money avoiding “professional” alterations!
- Skirts from long to mid to short
- kids clothes- I buy a size or two big and take in the waist a bit so I’m not constantly buying new items
- home goods like tablecloths, baby slings, and so much more!
Think of mending
- work jeans
- kids clothing
- your favorite pants that still look amazing
- seams that have come undone
- lost buttons
- broken zippers
The Modern Girl’s Guide to Sewing is a video course taught by two experts that I know you’ll LOVE and come away with skills you can apply RIGHT AWAY.