October 25, 2023

Is it worth learning to sew?

If you’ve ever contemplated learning to sew your own clothes you may well have hesitated. After all, it can seem very intimidating, expensive and time-consuming! But if you’re wondering whether it’s worth learning to sew, I’m here to tell you that yes, yep, 100%—I absolutely recommend giving it a go.

If you’re wondering if it’s worth learning to sew—and how exactly you could learn—my new book, “Sewing the Curve: Learn How to Sew Clothes to Boost your Wardrobe and your Confidence” is a fantastic place to start. Here’s why I recommend you jump in and start learning straight away:

1. You can design and sew clothes that express your personal style.

Before I learned to sew, I felt incredibly constrained by the clothes available to me to buy in stores. Being plus size with a large bust, I was incredibly limited in clothes that were available to me, and I’m not exaggerating when I say that I didn’t (still don’t!) like at least 95% of them. What evil person decided all curvy people want to wear all-polyester sacks, potentially with a butterfly diamante design on the shoulder?!

The amazing, wonderful, fantastic thing about sewing is that you can make what YOU want. That means you can find a pattern for a style you like, make changes if you want to (like changing the length of a skirt, the shape of a sleeve, the depth of a neckline—it’s all possible), find fabric that’s exactly the weight, colour and texture you like—and voila, the wardrobe of your dreams.

2. You can sew clothes that ACTUALLY FIT YOU

OK, so I never liked the poly butterfly diamante style, but the bigger issue was that I didn’t even fit what was in most of the stores. Even if they had the right “base” size, my boobs are at least 2-3 clothes sizes bigger than the rest of me. So either I was relegated to things that were too tight, everything stretchy, or else sack-like options that just fell down from my bust.

It was super disheartening and bad for my confidence—how can you feel good about yourself when your external appearance doesn’t reflect your personality?

Learning to fit sewing patterns literally changed my life. Finally, I ONLY wear clothes that fit me well, and not just overall “fit onto my body” but actually fit each part of my body in the way that I want.

See a trend you love but can’t find it in your size? No problem, you can just make it for yourself now! Don’t like this season’s trends AT ALL but you still need some new clothes? You’ve got it covered now! This reason alone is enough to make it totally worth learning to sew.

Need to learn how to fit? I’ve got you covered! Check out my best-selling book “Ahead of the Curve: Learn How to Fit and Sew Amazing Clothes for your Curves”.

3. It’s possible you can save money

Notice I say “possible”? Yeah, it’s not a guarantee that you’ll save money by learning to sew your own clothes.

Now there are multiple ways to look at this: if you usually wear very inexpensive fast fashion then I’m here to tell you that sewing your own clothes will almost certainly be more expensive, even if you buy thrifted or sale fabric.

However, if you’re used to higher quality clothes, then it’s certainly possible—you can even find designer “overstock” fabric and make a designer dress (that actually fits you as you want!) for a fraction of the price. Your “me-made” clothes can be made from much higher quality fabric than the equivalent clothes you could buy in a store, and can last much longer if you take care of them—so ultimately, it can be great value.

All that said, remember that sewing your own clothes is as much about the process as the end result—it’s a worthwhile hobby and fun way to spend your time, so it’s worth considering that too when you think about the money you invest versus the outcome of your garment sewing.

4. The confidence boost is amazing

The first time you wear a me-made garment and someone stops you to ask you where you got it, you’ll know the confidence boost you can get from sewing! But even apart from the satisfaction of knowing I DID THAT, sewing your own clothes can be amazing for your confidence. Wearing clothes that exactly express your style, and fit you well, is nothing short of revolutionary for body-image, especially if you haven’t had access to those types of clothes before. It’s no exaggeration to say that it totally transformed how I saw myself!

Forget about trying on ill-fitting garments in over-lit changing rooms: from now on your wardrobe can be 100% custom, and I’d say that’s well worth learning to sew.

So what do you think? Is it worth learning to sew? If you’re already a sewist, is there anything you’d add to the list?

(Want to make the garments you see in this blog post? They’re all from my beginner book, “Sewing the Curve!”)


Photo credit: Linda Campos

2 thoughts on “Is it worth learning to sew?

  1. Lissy says:

    Cannot wait to receive my preordered book, Sewing the curve. I am in the UK so have to wait a little longer, and had to order through Amazon to reduce postage costs so am hoping they deliver on time. I am so excited, I already have ahead of the curve and love the patterns and all the wonderful instructions. Please may we have some Cashmerette labels to buy so that we can then sew them into our finished garments? Pretty colours maybe with symbols or pictures but of course with Cashmerette in elegant script!

  2. Katja says:

    Of course it’s worth it! additional skills are always an advantage

Let me know what you think!