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To wonder if sewing is a dying art?

(113 Posts)
NotHerRealname Tue 12-Feb-13 11:10:37

The sum of my sewing ability is to;

Sew on a button
Repair a small hole or split seam
Take up (very badly) a seam.

All these I can do to a pretty low standard. About the same as my Dh. We share these jobs between us!

My mother can use a sewing machine, make clothes, invisible stitching etc. as well as knit and crochet! So can my Mil.

I could have learnt a bit more as a child but I didn't really see the value in it. I do wish now though, that I was a bit handier with a needle and thread.

Would it be very nosey to ask how much you lot can sew? and also do you think lost people now just throw stuff away without trying to repair it?

Flisspaps Tue 12-Feb-13 16:42:06

There's an Arts and Crafts board on here (in fun and games) for anyone who'd like to pop over but hasn't found it smile

Shesparkles Tue 12-Feb-13 16:51:21

I first learned to sew when I was about 7, my mum always sewed so I picked it up from her.
These days I can turn my hand to just about anything, wedding dresses, curtains, blinds, etc, but I seem to spend my time altering things for my super skinny kids!
I take on paid sewing jobs now and again, curtains and children's wedding outfits mostly, but I can't get over the number of people who are willing to pay to have a hem turned!
What I'd really like to look at doing is corsetry, but I'd rather learn from somebody rather than a book

PrincessTeacake Tue 12-Feb-13 16:57:17

I make costumes and occasionally my own clothes, and little bits and pieces for my mindees, it's not as difficult as you might think. And I know loads of other late teens to early twenty-somethings that can sew well too.

I think it tends to skip a generation, my grandmother was an excellent seamstress but my mother would eat the fabric before she'd attempt to sew.

nickelbabe Tue 12-Feb-13 16:57:54

it is in a way.

I can sew like a daemon (when I take the time to actually do it properly)
I can also crochet (sort of)
but i can't knit (i can knit in theory, but I can't follow a pattern)

My mum always sewed and hated knitting (although she can do it very well) and she also mainly crochets.

My little sister can't do any of it - i'm sure she can sew on a button or something like that.
my big sister can now sew and loves it. but she only started doing it a couple of years ago, and took a course in sewing stuff. she makes all sorts of useful things like bags and purses and needle rolls etc.
I made her make me a needle roll for my crochet hooks because I couldn't be bothered, and I was very impressed by the quality of the sewing.
she's now obsessed with it - has her own machine and little shed etc. and I bet she wishes she'd done it years ago.

MothershipG Tue 12-Feb-13 17:11:04

My DS has just come home with the waistcoat he made at school, it's fab and I'm very proud. grin So not a dying art.

I can make clothes with a pattern but patchwork and quilting is my thing, I only have 2 sewing machines but fantasise about the day I win the lottery and can afford a long arm quilting machine. [sigh]

Not in my family. Everyone can sew and my boys have their own machines.

oldraver Tue 12-Feb-13 17:42:42

I can sew pretty well and used to train people to sew, my OH can sew is pretty handy at sewing as well as he trained to be a sewing machine mechanic.

Neither of us really likes sewing on buttons

mrsjay Tue 12-Feb-13 17:46:48

I can sew a button and erm put dds guide badges on I really wish i could sew and make im useless blush

CoffeeandCremeEggs Tue 12-Feb-13 17:50:58

I can sew pretty well both by hand and on machine - I am good with a pattern but get a bit panicky if I need to adapt it. I have one machine but would love to buy an overlocker to be its friend. I love sewing - I find it incredibly rewarding. I rarely throw something away without trying to mend it (disclaimer - if it is something I actually like!)

I have made a corset or two, too, and would again, it was definitely worth the effort, even if trimming boning to fit is a bit of a hassle.

I can also cross stitch and embroider, and quilt a bit. I cannot knit to save my life although I keep trying. I have never tried to crochet. I did try lacemaking in my teens and was awful at it...

My mum can sew, knit, embroider, quilt and smock (smocking! is insane!) and used to make clothes for me and my sister when we were little, but never really taught me. I picked it up from doing Textiles at school and from costuming theatre groups at uni.

MrsMushroom Tue 12-Feb-13 17:54:10

I can embroider, make clothing and soft furnishings and my 8 year old DD can make a basic skirt and a bag and she is just beginning embroidery and cross stitch. So Yabu!

NotMostPeople Tue 12-Feb-13 17:57:03

I've just made a dress today (although I had already cut it out), I've got three sewing machines I started off by teaching myself but have done lots of courses in sewing and pattern cutting over the years. There's still lots to learn. I've done an online course from Craftsy recently, which was great.

I can knit, but haven't done any for a long time and I love to cross stitch, but lothe the awful kits so haven't done much.

queenofthepirates Tue 12-Feb-13 18:18:17

I can sew and knit and after I had my DD, I set up a company teaching other ladies how to do it! I really enjoy it and get to meet plenty of like minded souls.

Oddly though I can't crochet so I employ a very nice lady to run my crochet classes for me. I feel a little ashamed....

GetOnYourDancingShoes Tue 12-Feb-13 19:51:53

I can sew by hand and using a machine. I can do patchwork, applique, embroidery, cross-stitch etc.

I knit, crochet and can spin yarn using a spindle or a spinning wheel. I can weave using a peg loom.

I also like to make jewellery using various beading techniques. One craft seems to lead to another and I am currently decorating the boxroom to house it all grin.

I teach knitting once a week at DS's school to a bunch of enthusiastic Y6, so am passing on some basic skills. We are sewing puppets next term.

MrsHoarder Tue 12-Feb-13 19:55:39

I'm mid-twenties and can sew. Do repairs ( always carry a needle and thread) and have a few dresses and skirts I made myself. Can knit too.

andubelievedthat Tue 12-Feb-13 20:39:51

My bloke insists on sewing all his own stuff ,inc. zips .>bloody modern ?guy.

CaseyShraeger Tue 12-Feb-13 20:41:12

Which Craftsy course did you do, NotMostPeople? There are a few that I keep hovering over the order button on.

freddiefrog Tue 12-Feb-13 20:47:48

I thought knitting and sewing were supposed to be making a bit of a come back

My mum used to make wedding dresses when I grew up and she taught me the basics, but I have to say, I wasn't all that interested in it and probably didn't take it up as much as I should.

I can make a pretty simple child's summer dress, draw string bags, that sort of thing and replace zips, sew on buttons, use a sewing machine and an over-locker etc.

I'm making costumes for a school performance at the moment - simple tunics and wide legged trousers on an elasticated waist band and I'm whizzing through those ok. The more complicated dresses were beyond me though

I was taught to knit by my grandmother and can knit to an ok standard

Viviennemary Tue 12-Feb-13 20:48:00

I can sew but never mastered making a garment from a pattern though I did try several times. I couldn't get on with the tissue paper as it kept tearing. It would be a nice skill to have though. I do knit and can do basic crochet. Everyone should be able to sew on a button though and take up a hem.

dawntigga Tue 12-Feb-13 20:48:49

If you're looking for courses try Alison Smith in Ashby-De-La-Zouch she's expensive but VERY good.


FryOneFatManic Tue 12-Feb-13 20:51:07

queenofthepirates Where do you run your courses? Am midlands based and I do want to learn to use my sewing machine and make stuff.

dikkertjedap Tue 12-Feb-13 20:54:08

I can knit and sew very well and crochet reasonably well.

I make our own clothes, dressing up clothes for school plays and lots of other stuff, anything really.

I have an ordinary sewing machine (which can do decorative stitching) and an overlocker.

I also do embroidery.

I really enjoy making things, and luckily enough my dd is also really keen to learn how to make things.

lurkerspeaks Tue 12-Feb-13 20:58:12

I can knit and embroider well. I'm currently in a knitting phase. It is quite a hidden craft though - lots of my existing friends knit but I only found out when I started to knit again. The number of shops on the highstreet isn't representative of the people doing it and the purpose has changed. I don't knit because it is cheaper (like my Grandmothers did) I knit for fun. The yarn to make a handknitted childs cardigan or jumper usually costs me around 30 quid as I don't like working with synthetic fibres.

I can also sew although my machine skills are rather rusty. I have/can make simple curtains and roman blinds. I get scared about joining widths of fabric especially if it is expensive stuff so I would outsource large curtains/ those with interlining.

Dressmaking I have to confess I've never really seen the point of but the posts above about school plays are scaring me. Maybe I should have paid more attention in Home Economics at school.

I do little repairs myself but hate hate hate taking up trousers and always take them to the sewing shop up the road. Usually about 6 months after I first bought the bloody things.

I've just agreed to remake my Grandmothers peg beg in new fabric (she is 90, and it is one you hang round your neck so is much easier for her to use). It will probably only take me a short amount of time once I dig the sewing machine (I share it with my aunt for occassional projects).

I teach all children who show interest how to sew or knit. I'm only teaching myself to crochet at the moment so I'm probably not quite ready yet to pass those skills on.

longdistance Dublin has had a passmenterie shop for the past two years!

That is just ribbons and braid and buttons, I can browse quite happily there at lunchtime.

However we've lost a haberdashery and 2 fabric shops in the same time.

So I don't know how they are making money (particularly as they are in the most expensive shopping centre in the area.)

Does anyone realise we all sound like Tiffany Aching in The Wee Free Men when she lists her skills ("cheese making, spinning, weaving")?!

lurker I hadn't made anything for years when I started out doing costumes for the school panto. Skill was definitely not required - the ability to put in a wisely placed safety pin was usually all that was needed!

I once made 6 mermaid's tails using laminate flooring underlay as stiffening - v cheap and cheerful - there was a budget of about €500 for 100 children and 20 adults...

MadameDefarge Tue 12-Feb-13 21:39:59

my ds has just revealed (aged 12) he is doing sewing in D and T. he learnt to knit and simple sewing in primary. my mother made lots of our clothes. i learnt to sew and knit by osmosis. but have def let it fall.

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