My favourite part of sewing, the thing I love the most, the thing that drives me to do it…. is to have access to clothes.
I sew so that I can wear clothes.
My favourite part of sewing is wearing clothes.
There’s no correct way to grow (or not grow) as a sewist.
There’s a strong feeling about the natural progression through sewing. That you start with beginner project, slowly ‘improving your skills’, until your reveling in hand-bound buttonholes and couture finishes.
But, there’s no wrong way to be a maker. There’s no wrong way to clothe yourself. If you want to keep making and wearing basics, because it suits you to do so- then keep doing what you want to do.
The pressure to progress through the hobby of sewing often presumes that this is a ‘hobby’ that’s just for fun, or for extra pieces for your wardrobe, for ‘wardrobe frosting’. This ignores the fact that for many fat folks, sewing is a final resort for folks told ‘brands shouldn’t have to cater to your body’, and ‘you should just make your own clothes’.
Being fat while making
Because I’m fat, and it’s not easy for me to source clothes in my size, not easy for me to source natural-fibre clothes in my size, not easy for me to source clothes that suit my ethical preferences for local and sustainable clothes.
I’m not spending my time on bound buttonholes on a highly-tailored jacket because I’m spending my sewing time making my day-to-day clothes. So that I can head out into the world not naked.
I’m still not certain whether I would be sewing if I could buy the clothes that I wanted to wear. Would I have started if boxy natural-fibre clothes had been available to me? Definitely not. Do I enjoy the process of sewing enough that I’d keep doing it if I could buy what I wanted? I’m just not sure…
But, I do know that I like the outcome of sewing, which is to have clothes that I can comfortably wear.
Being involved in the fat community
The laundry list of things that we must be doing in order to be contributing enough on Instagram, and to be sharing ‘useful content’ continues to grow. People want photos of all of your angles, you need to be seated and standing, and take a video. You need to be showing constant improvement at your craft and a serious dedication to the craft too. If you’re not striving for improvement then it can feel like you shouldn’t be bothering.
Let me assure you that you don’t need to be ‘contributing’ anything through your sewing.
There’s no minimum that must be met in order for you to take part in sewing. You don’t have to share pictures of your makes to be contributing. There is no minimum requirement to ride this ride (this social media sewing community ride). Anybody who tries to tell you that you need certain equipment, that finishes have to be done in a certain way, that there’s a correct way to do this-that-or-the other…well, they’re probably selling you something. It could be someone else’s products, or they could be selling you themselves as an expert, but either way it’s not true.
I’m not following you for your skills as a sewist.
You don’t need to be making perfectly fitted garments for me to be interested in what you’re making.
I don’t care if you’re an expert in garment making, fabric or sewing.
I probably don’t follow you for you to teach me how to sew and actually I require nothing of you.
If you’re wondering whether you’ve got anything relevant to say, if your voice is just taking up space, or if anyone is interested in your thoughts and your makes- I am.