This year most people had the time to try something new. From a new hobby, to finding your next favorite show, to starting that book you always meant to read, all of the social distancing we’ve been doing has meant that a lot of people are finding new ways to entertain themselves. One thing I learned during lockdown was the basics of using a sewing machine.
One great thing to learn when it comes to getting started sewing is how to alter your clothing. I found this to be less daunting than the idea of buying fabric and creating something entirely from scratch. It’s also a way to reduce waste, by fixing garments you aren’t happy with instead of just throwing them away. I recommend starting this process off with clothes that you won’t be heartbroken over if you make some mistakes along the way, because there’s a good chance you will! This article, 5 Tips to Start Altering Your Own Clothes, has lots of information on how to get started altering yourself, as well as when it might be best to go to a professional tailor instead.
Did you know that 84% of unwanted clothing (including items donated to thrift stores) is thrown away? The continued practice of throwing away clothing in the United States, whether it be old, dirty, or doesn’t sell fast enough at (often overfilled and overwhelmed) thrift stores, is a huge issue and creates tons of waste. O ne way to help this is by upcycling. This means taking clothes you already own, or one’s you’ve purchased secondhand, and changing them up to make something new. There are tons of fun ways to do this that you can find online, and it’s a great time to get creative with paint, bleach, or patches in order to really make it your own. This video is a great one that takes a look at the upcycling basics!
If you don’t have a sewing machine, another great skill to learn is embroidery. For only a few dollars you can buy needles, thread, and an embroidery hoop, then get right to work. You can use embroidery to mend holes in your clothing or just add some fun designs to otherwise plain pieces. It doesn’t take too long to learn the basic stiches of embroidery, and once you do there’s no limit to what sorts of designs you can do! To get started, I recommend this article from The Spruce Crafts , which tells you everything you need to know.
I’m constantly trying to keep my hair out of my face, and one of my favorite ways to do that is with headbands. But I could never find ones that fit me perfectly, and wanted more that could coordinate with my outfits. Making headbands yourself is a great way to solve this problem! I love this tutorial to get started, but the great part of making it yourself is that you can adjust these instructions to different material or measurements.
I also love wearing scrunchies, either to tie my hair back or as a cute accessory on my wrist. Scrunchies are one of the easiest things to sew, and you can make them by hand or with a machine. They’re the perfect way to use scraps of fabric from other projects so you can avoid waste, and what’s better than making something new that has a matching hair accessory ready for you to wear? Handmade scrunchies also make super cute gifts that you can match to your recipient’s favorite colors and styles.
Do you know how to sew? Would you like to learn? What are some of your favorite sewing projects? Let us know in the comments!