Sewing is without a doubt a fun and useful skill to learn. It has many uses, from making small projects like a table runner to a complex one such as your dress. It is a practical and worthwhile hobby.
Several years back, sewing clothes is a frugal way to save money on clothing. But things have changed. Sewing your clothes nowadays does not always mean saving. With increasing prices of fabrics, buying ready-made outfits sometimes is a smarter option.
Whether sewing your clothes is worthy or not is a mix of thoughts. In some cases it is a worthwhile thing to do, while at times, it is not. There are a few things you have to consider before you can determine if sewing your clothes is all worth it.
Is sewing your clothes worth your time? If you are a full-time homemaker, it might be. But for a person working 8 to 9 hours outside the house, it isn’t at all.
Sewing your clothes on a small scale like mending old dresses and tops is worth doing. Although, constructing an entire wardrobe is a handful. It all depends on how much time sewing clothes will take from you. Is it worth spending your time sewing a blouse? Or do you prefer buying one for $30 and spend your time on other things?
- Kind of Clothes
Are you buying high-end or luxury brands of clothes? If you want to wear high-end brands because of their quality and fabric, then sewing can be a better route. Assuming you have the skills and the right equipment, sewing is worth your while.
You can buy great quality fabrics and sew your desired style of clothes. This is more practical than spending thousands of dollars on a branded top or dress.
- For Whom The Clothes Are For?
Do you sew clothes for yourself or your kids? If you make clothes for yourself, then sewing can be costly. But sewing clothes for your children is a different story. Children’s clothes often have inflated prices.
Some brands even cost as much as adults’ clothing. Since children’s clothes need less fabric and other materials, sewing them is great.
Sewing your clothes can be worth it if you get better results than the ones in the store. It is worth it if it makes you happy and fulfilled. Sewing your clothes is worthwhile indeed if it is worth your time, effort, and money.
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What Do I Need To Sew My Clothes?
Sewing your clothes gives you that feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment. A feeling which makes sewing addictive. Constructing your clothes can be easy if you have the skills and tools.
Passion for sewing is not enough to drive you to sew your clothes. There are other things you need to have.
- Sewing, Drafting, and Designing Skills
There are more than just sewing skills you need to have to make your clothes. Constructing a simple top or a pair of pants is more than cutting fabric and running it on your sewing machine.
You need to design it first, and draft it on a pattern. In this stage, you need to get your measurements and then use them on your desired style or design. Once done, draft it on a pattern and cut it. Then, this will be your guide to cut the fabric.
Before the actual sewing, these two previous steps need skills, too. So, if you want to sew and construct clothes, you also need to learn pattern-making and fashion design. The latter does not mean intricate designing of clothes but the basics are necessary.
Once you have completed all the design, pattern, and fabric cutting, then it’s time to sew. Considering you have the sewing skills needed, so this part should be easy for you.
- Equipment and Materials
If you plan to sew your clothes, you must have the necessary tools and equipment. You must have a sewing machine, fabrics, buttons, threads, and cutting tools. Some of these tools are easy to buy from textile or crafting stores. But some may not be accessible to your area.
It is best to plan the kind of clothes you want to make before you dive into the process. Make sure that you have all the needed materials before you start. This saves you time, money, and effort.
Some beginners get too excited to make several projects without planning. This often leaves them lots of unfinished projects.
Yes, you need to invest several hours or even days to sew your clothes. Although it does not mean you have to make your clothing project in one straight go. You may do it on a schedule if you have other things to do.
Sewing your clothes takes time. If you want them ready in a day or two, then you need to work overtime on them. If you don’t have the luxury of time, then sewing can be a challenge.
As you know, measurement, designing, and pattern-making can already take up at least 4 to 5 hours of your time. Think of the time you need for the actual construction of that pattern on your fabrics. How about the finishing touches? It does take time to sew your clothes.
When you have all these elements, sewing your clothes can be such a breeze.
Is Sewing An Expensive Hobby?
It depends on the kinds of projects you would like to do. Sewing like any other hobby can cost you a significant amount of money to buy quality materials.
You know that a reliable sewing machine is a primary investment here. Add to it is the costs of other materials you need like fabrics, scissors, shears, rotary cutter, etc.
At first, sewing will cost you a significant amount for these essentials. But once you have them, you will not have to re-purchase them again, especially if you maintain them well.
You might still have a few questions in mind that you want to clear up before you start sewing clothes. To help you decide well, here are the answers to some common questions about sewing.
- Is it cheaper to make my clothes?
It is both YES and NO.Yes. Sewing your clothes can be cheaper if you are not particular about the fabrics you use. Also, if you will use your leftover fabrics to make new ones then, sewing your clothes is cheaper.If you want to save on buying luxury brands, sewing your clothes can be a more frugal choice. All you need is buy a good quality fabric, design it to your liking, then sew it. Your output is way less expensive than the branded ones.
No. Sewing can be expensive if you do not have the time to do it. If you work outside your home, you might struggle to find time to sew. Another reason is if you are still a beginner. Sewing your clothes with your novice skills might cost you more than buying them.
- Is it difficult to sew your clothes?
When you have the skills, sewing your clothes is easy. It will only be challenging for those who have novice skills. Also, those with little to no knowledge in pattern-making may find sewing a bit of a challenge.If you have been sewing for quite some time, sewing clothes becomes easier and faster.
- Is sewing your clothes sustainable?
Yes sewing your clothes is sustainable if you maximize the use of every material you use. When you reuse or repurpose your fabric leftovers, then it becomes sustainable. You can repurpose old projects into new ones to avoid wasting your materials and effort.You can transform your old dress into a new set of rompers with a matching purse. You can repurpose your previous projects into many different outfits. All you need is a bit of creativity to re-create or re-style them to suit the latest trends.
How Much Does It Cost To Sew A Dress?
The cost of every project depends on the materials you use. If you use a fabric that is of decent quality, you may have to spend at least $12 per yard (0.91 m.). You need to multiply this the amount you need for your dress.
Say, you will need 3 ½ yards for a dress. You must multiply 3 ½ t to $12/yard (0.91 m.), so you will spend $42 on fabric alone. Add to that is the cost for buttons, zipper, embellishments, and thread. The expenses for pattern-making are not yet included here.
You can cut your cost if you use your on-hand materials like pattern paper, buttons, and threads. You may only have to spend at least $150 for the essentials.
Why Is Fabric So Expensive?
Fabrics whether natural or synthetic come with hefty price tags. This is because the production fabrics are not cheap and easy. Here are the factors that affect the price of your fabrics.
- Direct and Indirect Cost of Production
The fabric manufacturers spend on raw materials, labor, utilities, and logistics costs. Each fabric needs different kinds of raw materials. They also need specific agents to make them viable for garment construction.
All these plus a certain percent for their markup is only a factor for fabric pricing.
- Availability of Raw Materials
Some raw materials are not easy to have like silk and cashmere. These natural fibers are not available or accessible most of the time. That is why they have higher price points compared to cotton and synthetic fibers.
The harder it is to get the raw materials, the higher their price. Most of the natural fibers cost more than synthetic ones.
- Labor Cost
The production cost of the fiber is different from textile production. Manufacturers spend to convert raw materials into threads viable for textile production. This is different from the cost of weaving and knitting these threads into fabrics.
The costs for both processes are significant. Some fibers can be woven through machines. But, some fibers that need manual weaving.
The more difficult it is to produce the fabrics, the higher are their prices.
- Logistics Cost
Bringing these fabrics to the market has involved several importation and exportation processes. The expense for importation and exportation of raw materials alone is already costly. Add to these are the other set of expenses to bring these fabrics to textile and craft stores worldwide.
If you keep on using imported fabrics, you are likely to spend more than locally made fabrics.
There are some textiles with distinct brands. These fabrics have a unique quality, texture, and history. Some fabric brands like Liberty of London come from renowned designers or manufacturers. These are more expensive and luxurious than regular fabrics.
These factors are a few of the reasons why fabrics are expensive. There are still more considerations on why some are more costly than others. These include but not limited to marketing and demands for the fabrics.
Is Learning To Sew Worth It?
It is worth it to learn how to sew. This skill is profound, practical, and useful. Aside from being a hobby, sewing can be a good source of income. It also offers some health benefits.
- Sewing improves brain function
Sewing a project allows you to focus and this is good for the brain. It keeps you stay mentally active.
- Sewing improves body coordination
Since you use your hands, feet, eyes, and brain while sewing, your coordination improves. This is perfect for those who cannot do strenuous activities.
- It gives a feeling of achievement and control
Doing this bobby gives you a different feeling of fulfillment. Whenever you complete a project, you get a boost in your self-esteem. It also gives you that control since you can choose the projects and the materials you use.
- It relieves anxiety and stress
Sewing your clothes or any project lets you become mindful of the process. It helps you lessen or even forget grief, stress, and anxiety. If you get to feel stressed or depressed, sewing is a great way to divert your attention.
- Sewing brings out your creativity
One cause of frustration is when you cannot do what you want. In this case, sewing is beneficial. This hobby lets you show your creativity and gives you the freedom to do projects that can make you happy.
Sewing your clothes might be one of your ultimate goals in pursuing this hobby. It is a worthwhile aim because sewing as a whole is a pleasant and fulfilling hobby.
It may take a while to get you to this point, but with passion you will be able to do it sooner than you thought. Do not hesitate to sew your clothes. It will be your opportunity to overcome your doubts and fears. Keep in mind that you will never learn until you try.