The Savvy Sage of Sewing Stimulation

Where Are You With Your Sewing?

That may sound like a strange question this time of year while you’re out and about in a creative celebratory mood, but  it’s interesting to just observe while you’re in the creative spirit.  What’s interesting to note is:

  • Do you limit yourself?
  • Do you shy away from projects that might be too difficult?
  • Do you limit yourself from projects that you may have had problems with in the past?
  • Are you part of a majority of people who believe that no matter what, you can’t be fit and therefore don’t sew for yourself unless you have a figure like Cara Delevingne? (or if you do, it’s a boxy sack)


This month’s newsletter is asking readers to take a look at their sewing and ask some questions, particularly about where they are with it?  With the preponderance of sewing tips and tricks out there, it’s hard to separate the wheat from the chafe and as a result not only is a lot of misinformation getting bandied about as being legitimate but a lot (and I mean a LOT) of people are thinking that sewing is some sort of mystical art passed down from some know-it-all up high who only a few know about and even fewer are in communication with.

What’s worse is that this misinformation labels people as failures and furthers the idea that only a few can sew, because information that is partial or incorrect sets up students for failure.  If you don’t know where you’re going or where you’re supposed to go or which direction is the good, how are you going to know which is the right or wrong direction?  There is a reason the more “seasoned” sewist knows a lot more than the less seasoned; because they’ve seen a lot more, been through a lot of problem-solving and have gained a lot of experience on how to meet a lot of the demands that sewing can present.  Ann, the winner of the first Great British Sewing Bee, won because she had several issues, had confronted them before and had the knowledge of knowing what to do when that happened.

After the Oklahoma City bombing, there were PSA ads running that if you were feeling a list of emotions, then you should seek help and contact information.  The bombing exposed the relief and clean-up people to things and sites and emotions that is not normal in the life of emergency responders, and so there were going to be different responses to what they normally were exposed to, which required special solutions.  If these emergency responders didn’t know that what they were feeling were symptoms of problems that could be solved, how would they know to even seek help, much less where to go?  That was the whole purpose of the PSA ads – to educate and warn about something that they had no idea might be a problem.

Even though I do NOT equate the OKC bombing with sewing, this is also true of sewing:  if you don’t know that your problem can be solved, how are you going to find out how to solve it or which direction you need to go to get the solution.  If you don’t know what you need to know, how can you educate yourself with that information, particularly how can you learn from folks who are giving out partial information as well as wrong information.  And then how do you know you need to know if you don’t know what you need to know – which is a helluva mind-bender statement….sort of like which came first the chicken or the egg?…..which comes first, to know you have a problem or to find out the answer to your problem that you don’t know you have?

It’s really heart-breaking for me to see a student or hopeful student who has given up on being fitted and then proceeds to make a sack that is not only unattractive, but (let’s be honest) has little or no use in the closet.  They resort to buying something because they feel they have no other alternative.  So that besides the misinformation in freebie tutorials, the FCF (fast/cheap fashion) industry is telling them that they can’t be fit, so don’t try and wear this sack we have for you that would fit a building.

What a crock!

This breaks my heart to have people being lied to and the lie repeated so many times, that people actually BELIEVE it’s true.

It’s not.  I know it’s not cause I’ve fitted all sizes, shapes and styles.  I can’t make you look like your the same of Kate Moss, but I have made my clients in all shapes and sizes look pretty and comfortable because I have fitted them.

And then this also brings up the problem of exactly what a good fit is.  According to the FCF, if you are small it’s skin tight, but if you are big, then it’s a sack, but that’s a discussion for another day.

I know a lot of you are creative for the holidays and do many creative things in areas other than sewing – in cooking, interior decoration (putting up the decorations), in your holiday cards, landscaping (putting up the house lights).  My bet also is that you don’t limit yourself in these areas.  As you’re being creative this holiday season, think about all the ways you support, encourage and out-pace yourself naturally, or even without even knowing you’re doing it with what you thought you could do by making it a reality, and how to translate that into your sewing.

Think about the lies that are repeated so many times, that they border on the truth, even though they are still lies.

Think about the process that leads you through the creative problem-solving in your cooking, interior decoration, and the other things you create, and how to apply that to your sewing.

Think about the fun you have doing all this creative problem-solving!


1 Comment
  1. Well said! And did you just take a little potshot at those horrendous “freebie tutorials?” 😀 Yet another reason why you are my heroine. I hate those stupid tutorials for “easy DIY” clothing! They’re so misleading, they’re usually based on RTW junk, and they often ignore fitting issues and the differences among body types.

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