Hello and thanks for visiting my little piece of the internet! I started this blog to document my attempt to learn dressmaking. I’m going to tell you why, but first a confession. I am a serial hobby monogamist.
Over the years I have tried jewellery making, book binding, cake decorating, floristry, card making, homemade cosmetics, scrapbooking… I could go on. I have been utterly committed to each of these crafts. I have signed up to evening courses, read every word written about the subject, spent money on supplies and equipment, gone without food and sleep to complete my projects, and been completely, happily engrossed in my new hobby.
For about 6 weeks. Then I leave it languishing whilst I move onto the next one.
I have come to learn that it’s just in my nature to take an idea and run with it. For miles. Until I collapse. It isn’t necessarily a bad thing, although it has led to a huge stash of craft supplies that I have no use for but can’t bear to part with. I decided to start this blog to keep me committed to my latest love, sewing!
Like most British children (I imagine), I first learned to hand sew felt shapes together in wobbly running stitch at school, before coating them in glue and sequins. My mum still has a few of these very special creations in a shoe box in the loft.
I learned to use a sewing machine in a middle school Home Economics class, circa 1998. I made a few bits and pieces as a teenager, most notably a long swishy skirt made from old army fatigues and a handbag, upcycled from a denim jacket. I remember wearing the skirt on a school trip to Germany and my textiles teacher, Mrs Banks, being really impressed- until she looked underneath at the unfinished edges! I loved my jean jacket bag and used it until it fell apart.
There were disasters too, of course, my GCSE textiles project for one. It was a halter neck taffeta prom dress made to my exact measurements, in theory. It turned out so tiny that I couldn’t get it over my head. My mum still has that, too.
Speaking of my mum, she and my gran both sewed, but had given up long before I was around. Neither of them are exactly sure why they stopped. We’d always had old, half broken, sewing machines in spare rooms and attics and I persevered with them over the years for the odd project.
After witnessing my enthusiasm for the first series of The Great British Sewing Bee, my mum surprised me with a new sewing machine for Christmas a few years ago. I used it a little bit to shorten ready to wear dresses, fix fallen hems and such. I also made a reasonably successful Tilly and The Buttons Meitte skirt and a dressing gown. Then, predictably, I abandoned the sewing and moved onto something else.
The 2016 series of Sewing Bee really inspired me to dust of my sewing machine and learn how to sew, once and for all. I dived headfirst into reading sewing books, magazines and blogs, watching vlogs and trawling through sewing themed Pinterest boards. I’ve hovered on the edge of the online sewing community for a couple of months, feeling inspired and impressed by a group of (mostly) women who support each other, celebrate each other’s successes and provide a place for us all to indulge in our love of fabric. I want in!
So, I’ll be using this blog to record my successes and failures as I navigate my way through my projects. I hope that writing this blog will keep me focused on the hobby that I’ve dipped my toe in and out of for over a decade. Can I, a habitual Jack of all trades, finally master just one?