I’m a 5’2″ guy for whom it’s hard to find clothes that looks and feel nice, fits well and doesn’t cost a fortune. Usually, I have to get clothes tailored to fit and when my latest seamstress told me last fall that she was retiring, I decided to solve my clothing challenges once and for all by learning to design and make my own clothes. It was going to cost more than buying and tailoring, yes, as doing this stuff on your own isn’t cheap. You get a whole new appreciation for what clothes are worth and what you’re ripping off the third world for with all the cheap (and even expensive) clothes you have available out there. However, once you add on the factors of life skills, hobby, pride of being able to say you designed and made your own clothes and custom designs you’d love, it’s a very small price relatively speaking.
I started out simple, of course, learning as I went without a lot of sewing background, though I did have a designer’s background. Without that sewing background, though, I was also not boxed into traditional thinking of doing anything. That’s sometimes bad because there are some great traditional ways of doing things, especially for sewing techniques. However, it can also be great because traditional ways of doing things will often limit your thinking of what can be done, or force you into doing things when there are better ways out there. The trick is to be able to identify both traditional and non-traditional ways of doing things to assess both and choose the best way, or the best way for your situation because there might not be the same best way all the time.
Below were among some of my first projects. I designed these with my non-traditional thinking. They are scarfmitts, or scarfs with a pocket on each end to either store mitts or put your hands in them to keep your hands warmer. Some descriptions follow the gallery.
These were made from polar or Arctic fleece and essentially, serged when “inside out”, with a line cut on one of the hand pocket linings, turned inside out with the line then sewed back up. That’s the best summary I can give it without drawing out instructions, for which I don’t have time. All you need to know is that these things are double layered so they are terribly warm, and don’t have a very visible sign of having been sewn out right side out as many double layered scarfmitts do since you can’t serge it inside out all the way around when it’s right side out.
These are quick and easy projects I plan to be making a lot more of in the future. Just wait till the polar fleece is on sale and buy a bundle to save money cause that stuff is expensive!
- Pokemon scarfmitt – I saw a Pokemon pattern that was too scattered aside from the figure, so I cropped them in blocks and pieced them together to get this scarfmitt’s main side. I just put a Hello Kitty flower print on the other to match the soft pink as I didn’t have anything else to match. It was made for a girl who loved anime and she loved it!
- Canadian scarfmitt – This was made for my friend Janice who is a fervent Canadian. So I coupled the hearts with the maple leafs for the theme. It’s a bit razzle dazzle in look that’s too much for some, but if you knew Janice and her personality, you’d realize it was the perfect fit!
- Kids scarfmitt – This one combined kid prints of blue background penguins on one side, and white winter themed blocks on the other side containing moose, pines and such. This pic shows how the scarfmitts are truly reversible. It’s playful and cute, and I liked it so much, I’ve got one for myself! Definitely a fashion conversation starter, I can tell you that, though I don’t bring it anywhere I have to leave it out of my site among people I don’t completely trust! It’s definitely a drawback of nice custom designed and made fashion!
- Pairs scarfmitts – These were made for a couple, so the idea was this. One side common and one side different. The common side had to be something the guy and girl would wear in case they wanted to match as a couple. This was pretty much a guy’s guy and a girl’s girl sort of couple so no feminine flowers, in other words. I used the maple leaf prints. On the differing side, I went with the penguin prints (selection is tough in traditional Nova Scotia!) for the girl and the neutral puzzle print for the guy. Like I said, selection is tough in Nova Scotia! That way, for days when they’re not wanting to match, plus have an alternative design to their scarfmitts for wearing solo, they can use the other side.
I’ll be showing more of my sewing projects in the future. Bet you didn’t see sewing coming as a topic on this blog, eh? You really never know what you’re going to get on this site! 🙂