How Pursuing And Unlikely Hobby Can Turn Into a Creative Outlet and Passion
Guest Post | Lara Liz
Hi Everyone! I am so excited to be guest blogging today – I’m Lara from Handmade by Lara Liz, a sewing a lifestyle blog. I’m here to talk a little bit about how I fell in love with sewing and why I think you should too!
I entered my mid-20s like most of my friends with no real answer to the question “What do you like to do for fun?” I didn’t have a hobby, I didn’t play any sports, and my idea of a fun time was hanging out and watching Netflix. I work a full time job where I spend 100% of my time in front of a computer screen and then to come how and sit and watch more screens was just becoming a waste!
I’ve never been a particularly crafty person – I skipped out on Art Class in high school in favor of any other elective I could take instead, I am pretty much the definition of a #pinterestfail and I can’t bake or cook to save my life – but, that didn’t stop me from admiring all the pretty crafts on Pinterest and wondering how I could possibly be one of those girls.
I bought a sewing machine in early 2016 only with the intention of learning how to make small cosmetic bags. I was never that great at it, and try as I might, I couldn’t teach myself very well. I took a sewing class at a place in Washington, D.C. and when the instructor told me that she used hair grease to thread the needle of the machine, I thought perhaps maybe sewing wasn’t for me after all.
Shortly after that experience, and swearing off sewing, I found another fabric store that was opening here outside of Washington, D.C. and thought maybe another try was due. (Also, I needed to figure out if it was common practice to use hair grease to thread needles….the clean freak in me could barely recover from that one).
After initially setting up a lesson to learn how to make a drawstring bag, when I showed up the owner talked me into trying a shirt instead! I remember saying multiple times, I really don’t think I want to make my own clothes (J.Crew was perfectly fine with me – sewing clothes was kinda old fashioned, right?), but she convinced me to give it a go. I bought the pattern and made the final garment over a couple lessons. I did not do a great job – at all – but something about it, just stuck!
Picking out fabric and pairing it with garments is my favorite part – this fabric was made for this cowl neck blouse.
I fell head over heels with sewing – something about it really resonated with me. It was something so tangible that I could do after work and on the weekends. I also met a whole new group of friends – there’s a large resurgence of women in their 20s and 30s that sew.
I used to get so frustrated that by the time I was thinking about summer, the ready to wear stores were stocking fall clothes. And when I was ready for winter clothes, “resort wear” was out instead! Sewing your own clothes lets you make whatever clothes you want whenever you want – Florida in November, make some shorts and cute dresses! Random snow storm in March, make a winter coat.
Isn’t it so frustrating when you pick out a top at a store and you ask, “Do you have this in a 4 in this color?” and the sales person responds “Oh no, we have it in a 2 and a 6, but I can order it for you and we’ll ship it to you!” Sewing allows you to make whatever pattern you want in whatever color you want and whatever size you want whenever you want! It has made J.Crew thoroughly useless to me!
Jackets are some of my favorite makes – this is the Kelly Anorak in an army green twill perfect for fall and spring!
Sewing has been such an amazing addition to my life. In addition to the amazing people I’ve met, the relationships I’ve built and the handmade close of mine that has grown, I will never not be proud to tell someone that I made my clothes. In my two years of sewing, I’ve sewn so many different things – from jeans, to winter coats, to t-shirts to tops – nothing is off limits.
I have so many resources on my blog for beginner sewists from pattern reviews, to easy pattern suggestions and am always an email a way if you too are interested in picking up a new hobby. I’d love for you to stop by my blog and take a read yourself!
Lara Liz is a sewist that lives right outside Washington, DC. Her curiosity to learn about sewing became a passion and a lifestyle blog - Handmade by Lara Liz.
She shares sewing tips and inspiration on her site and enjoys designing and sewing feminine clothes with floral prints.
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