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#SewTalk: Where to start if you are a beginner?

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Hi Everyone!

In #SewTalk  Monday I will answer most common questions that I get about sewing. If there is anything you want to know or need a sewing advise – let me know in the comments below and I will answer them on next weeks #SewTalk Monday! Let’s start with this weeks pickle, that I actually get asked a lot:

Where to start, when you want to learn to sew your own clothing, but never sewn before? What tips you have for beginners?

Though I pride myself currently being a sewing school student, it’s not where I learnt to sew – my journey to sewing starting more than a decade ago, when I was still in high school and got my first very old, yet very “my own” sewing machine. Back then, there was very limited amount of information on internet about sewing (or perhaps I was not that good of a researcher), so I mostly learned to sew from my Burda Style magazines and analyzing a ready-made garments seam by seam. That somewhat worked for me, and I managed to create an almost solely me-made wardrobe even before entering sewing school, however, I also made every single beginner sewing mistake there is and would often sit in front of sewing machine thinking “what am I doing?”.

Luckily, today internet is overflowed with sewing tutorials, which is a good thing; but it became easier to get lost in the whole mass of information, which is a bad thing and people often do not know where to start. When friends ask me how to start sewing, I always give them few advises which in hindsight, if I were to start from zero now, I would give myself as well:    

  • For first project, choose an easy garment, yet the one that will make you proud of what you made. I would recommend to start with a full or half circle skirts – they are pretty easy to make, the pattern is drawn by your exact measurements, so very little or none fitting is required; and to top it all – they look very cute, feminine and – if made from gorgeous fabric – has “wow” effect, that will have people asking “Did you make that?” and you will be proud that you actually did! Here is quite a detailed and beginner friendly tutorial how to draft a full or a half circle skirt for you to start! 
  • Though I am not a big fan of sewing books (I am more of a “google it” kind of girl), I recommend having one big picture-heavy sewing encyclopedia (mine is this one), that you would get inspiration from. When I was just starting to sew, I would take this book, make myself a nice cup of tea and just spend an evening browsing through pages and analyzing every picture, getting ideas about various finishes, seams or cuts, that I would later apply to my projects. 
  • Don’t over-invest in sewing, before you know you really like it. Like any other hobby, sewing can get very expensive very quickly, so I advise you to start slow. For example, you can get your first sewing machine for less than 100 Eur and it will do a really good job (I recommend sticking with well known names in the market, like Singer, Janome or Brother, when buying a entry level machine; for example this, this and this has great reviews and are very budget friendly options). After you make 5-10 garments and still feel like that sewing fewer is not going away, you can purchase an overlocker or upgrade sewing machine, because then you would know you would get a use of it and it will be an investment worth making.  

This is it for todays #SewTalk Monday – hope you liked it! If there is a question about sewing you would like me to tackle on next Monday – let me know in the comments below!

Have a nice and productive work week!

Julie

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