You know, it’s funny because I’ll wear my little handsewn outfits to work and of course, now that everyone knows that I sew my own clothing they will inevitably ask, “Did you make that?” Sometimes, I get an eye roll as they ask, like the “you are so amazing to have made that, but I hate you because I don’t sew anymore” look. I really do. I don’t know why people are like that. Usually I try to get it out of them. Talk to them and say, “You could do it too, you know.” Inevitably, I get the “Oh, I used to sew everything. Jeans, dresses, coats, you name it. But I don’t sew anymore.”
So what does this really mean and will I feel this way when I’m older? I don’t want to feel this way, because I enjoy the art of sewing so much. I have to say that my grandma and aunt have sewn a lot of their garments and such since a young age and they still sew and find much enjoyment from it. I want to be like that. I still want to love it and I still want to make smashing clothing items even in old age.
I was finally able to get something out of someone at work one day. She loves my handsewn fashions and just thinks they are the most wonderful things she’s ever seen. She falls into this category of used to sew but doesn’t anymore. She bluntly told me that she was completely jealous of my talent and that I had gotten her starting to think about sewing a skirt for herself. She ranted and raved about her various sewing machines. I mean, to think, she has a vintage Bernina and a great Singer Serger and doesn’t even use them! She says she sews a few things here and there for her grandchildren, but nothing for herself. This is wherein I do believe is the heart of the problem. Really. Who wants to sew something that takes loads of hours, bleeding from pin pricking, cutting out, pre-washing and pressing your fabric only to give that away? I realize I’m stealing a little Selfish Seamstress thunder, but I completely and whole-heartedly agree. If you don’t make anything for yourself, then why do it? This is where I find it hard to say no too. When someone finds out that you sew, they want you to sew things for them, thinking it will be fun for you. Ha ha ha.
Take my Raindrop Coat, from the Lady Grey Pattern, everyone wants one of them. I had this one lady at work who kept asking me how much I would charge to make two of them, one for each of her daughters. I just looked at her and laughed and finally I said, “One of these would run you about $500 and that’s not even including the fabric.” But even for $500, I don’t want to do it. The sewing part is the enjoyment for myself, not for someone else. They can make their own. I mean, that’s why there are these things called sewing patterns right?
This also brings me to another point. How do you feel about telling people that you’ve made something that you are wearing? I used to think I should tell the whole world and be proud of it. But now I’m to the point where I would rather lie and say, “Oh no, I bought this” and then they wouldn’t pester me about:
- making them one
- asking me if I made it everytime I wear something cute
- asking me for alterations
- rolling their eyes at me because I actually make my own clothes and they don’t
Call me crazy but people are actually starting to get a little annoyed when they ask me if I made something and then I say yes.
What do you say? Does this ever happen to you? Thoughts, philosophies? How do you react when someone rolls their eyes at you after you have poured your heart and soul into a garment?
Sewing comic images courtesy Bitter Betty Blogs and yes I do find it hilarious that in the top comic the homemaker makes her own clothes because she finds it’s easy, not to mention a few other things but we’ll save that for a later post