Home   |   About Us   |   GROW: The Book   |   Blog   |   Join Us   |   Shop   |   Forum Rules

Sewing Skills — The Grow Network Community
Honesty is telling the truth to ourselves and others. Integrity is living that truth.

- Kenneth H. Blanchard

Sewing Skills

WendySueWendySue Posts: 28 ✭✭✭
edited May 2018 in The Homestead: DIY
Hand sewn clothes aren't all that difficult either.  Have made some of my most comfortable clothes (Renaissance Faire costumes) while camping out at the Faire site.  Made an oversized muffin cap as well, that I can pull in whatever direction I want for shade - super easy and quick, and I love it.
«1

Comments

  • Merin PorterMerin Porter Editorial Director Southwest Colorado (Zone 6a)Posts: 735 admin
    edited May 2018
    I've always wanted to learn to sew. My mother is an amazing seamstress and made many of our clothes when my sister and I were kids. My mom taught me basic stitching, how to sew on buttons, etc. -- even needlepoint. I knew how to use her sewing machine and made a few simple things here and there, but I never really took a big project from fabric to finish. When I was in my late teens, I took a sewing class because I wanted to learn, too -- but I tried making a shirt, which I now realize was way too complicated for my first project. I got discouraged and never really picked it up again.

    Sewing is still something I'd love to learn, though. I do have a sewing machine, and we inherited a serger from my husband's grandmother. I don't have either one set up right now, but I am keeping them for "someday." :)
  • Merin PorterMerin Porter Editorial Director Southwest Colorado (Zone 6a)Posts: 735 admin
    edited May 2018
    Oh, and our social media manager, Ruth, is also an amazing seamstress. She designs clothes, too -- her degree is related to it -- so she might be a good one to include in this conversation! :)
  • Ruth Ann ReyesRuth Ann Reyes Managing Director TGN Shy of the Chi - Zone 5bPosts: 348 admin
    edited May 2018
    Thanks, Merin!

    YES! I do love sewing. I have a Bachelors of Fine Arts; Apparel Design and Production.

    Marjory and I are tossing around the idea of creating a sewing certification. Maybe we can put our head together and come up with a loose outline for the curriculum. I have been racking my brain thinking of useful sewing projects for the homestead. I'd love to hear everyone's thoughts!
  • Casey CashCasey Cash Posts: 21
    edited May 2018
    Ruth and WendySue - I really hope you can collaborate on this to make a certification! I'm kind of like Merin, I have it on my "someday" list, but I would love to be able to learn this skill and start making my own clothing.
  • Suzette CarlinSuzette Carlin Posts: 16 ✭✭✭
    edited May 2018
    I’ve always wanted to learn to sew. My mother was an incredible seamstress, but when I was little I watched her sew for hours on end to make a living after my father passed, and it was just my mom and us 5 girls. I told myself I would never do that. Now I wish I had learned from her.
  • Anne BromwellAnne Bromwell Posts: 1
    edited May 2018
    I, too have been sewing for 60+ years and even though the hands aren't as strong as they used to be, I'm still quite skilled. Used to win blue ribbons at the local fair for my entries. I have a great pattern for an apron that's cut from one piece of fabric that I could share if you got a class going. An apron is a very practical first project for any homesteader!
  • AngelAngel Posts: 61 ✭✭✭
    edited May 2018
    I like to sew, and I often sew clothes for my kids, but sewing for adults intimidates me.  I know I'm missing some skills...
  • Linda GriffithLinda Griffith Posts: 1 ✭✭✭
    edited May 2018
    I am very interested in sewing.  I do sew for my daughters but it takes a long time because I am not an expert.  Zippers are the most challenging for me.  I would love for my 15 year old and my 4 year old daughters to be great seamstresses.  Any help would be very much appreciated.

    Linda
  • Rosemary HufRosemary Huf Posts: 1
    edited May 2018
    I am excited to see sewing as one of the skills on homesteading.  I learned sewing from 4-H when I was in my early teens. Later, I made some of my own clothes and my kids clothes when they were young.  Now, I want to develop skills to make my own basic patterns for myself and some items around the homestead.  Finding sources for the fabrics I want to use is a challenge, too.  Let me know what you think.....

     

     
  • JakeMartinJakeMartin Posts: 5
    edited May 2018
    Self taught.  Learned while in the military.  I used to help out at the parachute rigger's shed sewing on industrial Pfaff and Singer machines, sewing nylon webbing and leather.  Often made my own repairs and alterations/improvements to field gear made of leather, nylon, canvas, and cordura using nylon, monofilament, and cotton line.  Have also sewn tanned animal hides into pillows, gloves, and footwear.  Now retired and working a small farm, I sometimes make tote/grocery bags from feed bags.  Always interested in reading about other people's experience in subjects like this.
  • Ruth Ann ReyesRuth Ann Reyes Managing Director TGN Shy of the Chi - Zone 5bPosts: 348 admin
    edited June 2018
    I'm so excited to see that there is soooo much interest in sewing! WHOO-HOO!

    I too, think an apron is a great place to start. I also like the idea of tote/grocery bags...and what about grow bags?!
  • WendySueWendySue Posts: 28 ✭✭✭
    edited June 2018
    Yippee!! I am loving everyone's replies and comments on learning more sewing skills!  Ruth and I are going to put our heads together for all of you.

    I like her idea about sewing "grow bags," I was meaning to do this myself just never got to it.

    What about for our "advanced sewers?" I read a few replies about some real talent within our network. What would you like to learn that you don't already know?

    Zippers.... everyone asks me about wanting know how to replace a zipper. How about repairing a zipper that doesn't work? I can show you how to do that too. As long as there are no teeth missing, it's a pretty easy fix.

    The topic about making your own pattern is also easier than you might think. I can show you how to take an existing item and copy a pattern for it, or add a new twist to it.

    The possibilities are endless so keep all your comments and ideas coming in so we can work up a plan for starting this ball rolling.

     
  • Casey CashCasey Cash Posts: 21
    edited June 2018
    I'd love to be able to make an egg apron like the one below!

     

  • WendySueWendySue Posts: 28 ✭✭✭
    edited June 2018
    Very cute Casey....looks easy too. Keep this on our growing list of "how-tos."
  • Ruth Ann ReyesRuth Ann Reyes Managing Director TGN Shy of the Chi - Zone 5bPosts: 348 admin
    edited June 2018
    The egg apron would be a great project too! You could do a regular apron and then show how to modify it to add the egg pouches....I've been also wanting a gathering apron.
  • AlisonAlison Posts: 155 ✭✭✭
    edited September 2018
    I can do basic sewing. Things like basic shorts/ trousers/ dresses etc. I've also done some basic repairs. I am by no means professional, just get the job done.

    I once used a host of old jeans and denim jackets from my children that they'd outgrown to make a quilt cover for my son. He still uses it and it looks rather good.

    I don't have time for sewing at the moment, but it's a great skill I would like to have time for....I have plenty of items awaiting repairs.
  • peppypoblanopeppypoblano Posts: 92
    edited September 2018
    My grandmother sewed often.  I wish I had learned from her.  I also wish I'd have picked up more crocheting as well.  When we purchased our home the owners left behind an older sewing machine.  I held on to it hoping to learn how to do something other than the basics with just thread and needle.
  • StacyLouStacyLou Southern WisconsinPosts: 89 ✭✭
    edited September 2018
    Learning how to sew is on my to-do list! My mother-in-law offered to teach me, but we haven’t had time to sit down yet. She has an extra sewing machine that she said she’d give me as soon as I make room for it.

    Looking forward to hearing more about this topic!
  • AngelaAngela Posts: 42
    edited September 2018
    I love this idea.

    I am a beginner, but have been trying to think of a way to sew together a hanging food storage tiered basket for my potatoes, onions, nuts and other bulk dry store foods.  I don't have a lot of space so I was thinking of designing something I've seen for hanging and organizing kids toys, but stronger and breathable for food.

    I also want to make food storage bags that breathe, food wraps to replace plastic wraps, and anything related to up-cycling old clothes and linens.

     
  • WendySueWendySue Posts: 28 ✭✭✭
    edited September 2018
    Wonderful idea Angela,

    I think this would be a very good practical project. Keep this idea rolling...maybe come up with some pictures (at least in your head) about what this might look like.

    Thanks!
  • ettacass24ettacass24 Posts: 18
    edited September 2018
    Sewing a simple quilt would be very useful.  Simply cutting and sewing squares together by hand or machine would be a simple project.  I taught my sister in law how to make a string or scrap quilt when she didn't know how to sew. Anyone can do it.
  • ettacass24ettacass24 Posts: 18
    edited September 2018
    Sewing a simple quilt would be very useful.  Simply cutting and sewing squares together by hand or machine would be a simple project.  I taught my sister in law how to make a string or scrap quilt when she didn't know how to sew. Anyone can do it.

  • BlairBlair Posts: 46
    edited November 2018
    always ready and eager to read, study and actually try new things. I have made my wife a dress and skirt back in the day when we both had more time. but would be nice to learn how to do blind hems, binding stitches on the edges of fabric like hankerchefs, and other simple but useful tricks that just don't get talked about much.
  • CherlynnCherlynn Posts: 165 ✭✭✭
    edited January 2019
    I've been sewing for over 50 years.  I mostly mend clothes and work on quilts or other projects for Christmas gifts.  I've already finished one quilt top and took it to the quilt shop.  I used to hand quilt but try to avoid hand quilting anymore.  Did one hand quilted quilt for this last Christmas but turned the other 3 over and had them done.  Hope to get all my tops done in the first quarter so she has time to do them for me.  I make a lot of quilted bags from my scraps also.  I do occasionally sew clothes but I find I can buy them cheaper than I can make them.  I love checking thrift stores for clothing that can be remade into other garments.

     
  • JakeMartinJakeMartin Posts: 5
    edited January 2019
    Ruth Reyes-Loiacano - You don't need to make/sew grow bags as most feed bags are perfect the way they are. just fold down the sides and fill with soil.  I also use the 5ft X 5ft poly bags that farmers receive their planting grain in. (holds 2000lbs of seed).  They are great for growing sweet potatoes, potatoes, and many other root crops, as well as tomatoes and cucumbers that can just cascade down the sides.  The last for several years, especially if you wrap them with old tarps so that the sun doesn't degrade them.
  • LaurieLovesLearningLaurieLovesLearning Moderator Manitoba, Canada 🍁 zone 3, PrairiesPosts: 3,646 admin
    edited January 2019
    My modern machines always seem to have problems that never seem fixable. I do have a singer treadle in storage though. It is complete with all the bells and whistles. I have not used it yet. I want to move it in soon.

    I am not a great seamstress, but have done my share of hand-hemming, being short. I generally just roll pantlegs now. ;) I have also made ("winged it") pillows, curtains, aprons and a small sheet. My picnic blanket is not so great and remains incomplete. My square cutting skills are not so great.. :/

    One daughter was just given a bunch of beautiful fabrics and some quilting books. Some simple designs including appliqué would be cool. She has made a bag and a touque (winter hat) out of a recycled sweater.
  • BlairBlair Posts: 46
    edited January 2019
    One of the most practical skills to have in any household, homestead or otherwise. Have made a few things over the years but never really learned what I would like. Always good to learn more. would like to see a certification in this area.
  • ines871ines871 zn8APosts: 1,290 ✭✭✭✭✭

    in Germany grandma taught how to Crochet & Embroider & Knit before I started school, this was common in the European countries. In the 4th grade all us girls knitted a pair of woolen socks the proper way using 5 needles. In the 6th grade Hochschule we were taught how to Kloeppel (spelled with 2 dots over the o, & no e). - Americans know this as "bobbin Lace" it is done on a straw pillow dressed with green cloth, & and a very Intricate pattern is printed on cardboard fastened with short nails. We used about 14 bobbins to create Authentic LACE, see 1 example

    Here is a one-minute clip from the oldest Slovenian school that still teaches this intricate Art of lace-making that I too learned : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZIU-n_QUD78 it takes at least one month, sometimes many months to daily create what even we did to make beautiful lace

    After I was shipped to the USA, with my 20th paycheck I bought a simple Singer sewing machine & Sewed my own clothes, all different kinds. ... Too added Quilt-making to my sewing skills. - But I am not a professional like @Ruth Reyes-Loiacano

  • GrammyprepperGrammyprepper Mamaw, retired RN, jack of all trades master of none Zone 5BPosts: 169 ✭✭✭

    Sewing was one of those things I never really picked up on. Mom made all my clothes until I went to school. I know how to do 'basic repairs' and make simple stuff (I did make a lot of doll clothes as a kid, with mom''s help, and used to make purses out of old shorts, that kind of stuff) (Done some cross stitch back in the day too) Never had the patience for it. And now, I can't see to thread a needle to save my life, LOL! I've always had admiration for those who have the patience for good needlework! A sewing certification would be fun, but for me it would have to be REAL basic!

  • Ruth Ann ReyesRuth Ann Reyes Managing Director TGN Shy of the Chi - Zone 5bPosts: 348 admin

    I was thinking about an egg apron...We've discussed mini-certs that are more project based and that can be completed in a weekend. What are your thoughts about that?

Sign In or Register to comment.