Wednesday, February 22, 2012

learn to sew--guest post by maddie @ domestic anarchy

i have been sewing since the age of 9 when I discovered that the cabinet in the corner of our family game room actually held a sewing machine. I was on my own, my mother was no longer interested in sewing nor in teaching a smart-ass 9 year old. i taught myself with little more than the bernina instruction book which I found buried in the cabinet drawers along with all the accessories. i was 9 and i had no fear.

when people find out that I sew I usually get one of three responses:

"oh I wish I could do that but never had anyone to teach me"


"will you sew up my sleeve, hem my jeans, sew my wedding dress" (no i will not)


"i am just no good at that sort of thing"

i usually go on to share the fact that i do more than sew, i actually teach sewing and if they are interested i would be happy to give them information about classes they can take. this is usually when the deeper level of excuse mixed with fear comes to the surface. everything from can't afford a sewing machine to being scared of the fast moving needle to fear of failure.

the fact is that machine sewing in it's simplest form is just not that hard and it is way less dangerous than driving a car. each day thousands of young children in foreign nations use really large really fast sewing machines to make most of the clothing sold here in the united states, if they can do, you can too! heck, danger-wise no one ever was killed by a sewing machine. the worst that would ever happen would be to put a needle though your finger. it is no fun, i have done it, but it hurt way less than childbirth or the car accident i was in so just summon the courage and go for it!

if you can find the right instructor i suggest taking lessons but only with the right person. if the person at all reminds you of your miserable 8th grade home-ec teacher don't do it. you want someone with a cool laid back vibe, nurturing attitude and possibly someone who serves wine with evening lessons. (it does nothing for accuracy but sure does make it relaxing!)

no classes in your area? then it is time to turn to the great resources found in books and on the internet. for sewing books I recommend the following for all beginners:

stitch by stitch learn to sew by moebes - from soup to nuts, or scissors to bobbins this book is very close to having your very knowledgeable best friend teach you to sew, add wine if you like for a full experience!

1-2-3 sew by luckett baker- another friendly book with a casual vibe that makes sure you feel good about what you are learning and increasing your skills with each project.

sew mama sew hosts a fantastic blog where lots of sewing projects and techniques are shared with an open and accepting style that makes you happy to sew.

so there you have it, we are not too far into the new year to make your dream a reality , isn't it time you learned to sew?

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maddie can be found at domestic anarchy where she will hold your hand and calm your sewing fears, all the while making you understand how fantastic you really are. she is also on facebook and twitter.
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maddie kertay is the homechooling, crafting, sewing mother of 6 kids. you can find her most days in her sewing room stitching while she gives spelling tests and listens to kids read her endless list of prepositions she makes them memorize for no good reason - she is cruel like that.