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Message Board > Miscellaneous > Answer to: Remind me why I sew. ( Moderated by Deepika, EleanorSews, CynthiaSue)

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Answer to: Remind me why I sew.
Deb Fox
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Deb Fox
Intermediate
FL USA
Member since 8/26/05
Posts: 1210
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Date: 9/16/10 8:33 AM

This question was posted elsewhere on PR, but it hit home with me so much that I wanted to bring the thought over to here....my answer to this question is below. It is amazing that I saw this today, because as I was having my morning coffee this morning and thinking about my upcoming weekend and what I wanted to accomplish, the thought entered by head that I really do not like sewing all that much! Read below:

Wow, is this a timely question! I thought I loved to sew...but upon much introspection, I realized that I sewed because of how I was brought up. My parents did not have a lot of money, so my stepmother taught me to sew and told me that if I wanted new clothes, I would have to sew them myself. Over the years I got into the mindset that the only way I could have nice clothing was if I sewed it for myself so it wouldn't cost so much! I've kind of got myself into a mentality that I'm not worth the price of nice RTW. I really do not enjoy the sewing process all that much and I tend to look at it as just another chore I have to do. Now that I'm much older I've really been re-examining what makes me happy and what doesn't and how I want to live my life. I think I would much rather prefer to have sewing as a hobby rather than an requirement. Perhaps my needs would be better served by learning how to alter better RTW?

Please chime in and tell me about your reasons for sewing, and what do you love or hate to sew. I haven't sewn up a quilt, or concentrated on my first love, painting, because just the thought of having to sew my work wardrobe, and playclothes is just so overwhelming that I don't really get much of it done, and feel guilty when I push it aside to do the things I really love. Given how much I've spent in patterns and fabrics over the years, I probably could have had a top notch RTW wardrobe a hundred times over....

------
Deb: www.thinkingcouture.blogspot.com

Michelle L
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Michelle L  Friend of PR
Intermediate
MO USA
Member since 1/20/08
Posts: 1299
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In reply to Deb Fox


Date: 9/16/10 8:52 AM

I recently asked myself a version of this question, and wrote a blog post about what I found. I bet you would find the comments on the post very interesting! And would certainly provide some answers to your questions....link to blog post

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Michelle

http://cheapandpicky.blogspot.com/

kkkkaty
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kkkkaty  Friend of PR
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UT USA
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Date: 9/16/10 10:09 AM

Hmm. I actually like to sew, and it's the process I enjoy. I have really tried to improve my technique, which I chalk up to PRs influence, but it's the sewing itself that gives me the most pleasure. I am quite a cheapskate, and so paying a lot for nice clothes doesn't appeal to me, but I do have a good wardrobe of nice pieces, many bought whilst browsing better thrift stores. I definitely don't sew to save money.

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Viking Lily 545
Viking Ruby
Bernina Activa 210
Brother 1034d

kkkkaty
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kkkkaty  Friend of PR
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Date: 9/16/10 10:13 AM

I do think that life is way too short to give a lot of time to things that feel like drudgery. Some of it we can't escape (balancing checkbooks? Paying bills?), but if you wish you had more time for other things, like painting, cut back on sewing....

I haven't always followed through with this, but a few years ago I realized that there were things in my house that made me feel unhappy or guilty.... maybe the represent something unfinished, or a commitment that I didn't keep, or? but whatever they represent, it shocked me that I kept them around! So, out with the bad and the bad feelings....

------
Viking Lily 545
Viking Ruby
Bernina Activa 210
Brother 1034d

marec
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marec  Friend of PR
Intermediate
OR USA
Member since 5/11/08
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In reply to Deb Fox


Date: 9/16/10 10:39 AM

Deb, I don't have a lot to add to the comments about following what you love but...I want to applaud you for writing your real feelings in a public place. Now that you have said this out loud, maybe you can concentrate on other loves, and sew for pleasure, not work. I am looking forward to what you decide to do as a next step.

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my blog: http://kf-biblioblog.blogspot.com/
Sewing through my pattern stash-145
completed.

Deb Fox
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Deb Fox
Intermediate
FL USA
Member since 8/26/05
Posts: 1210
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In reply to marec


Date: 9/16/10 10:43 AM

Thank you so much...you know, as soon as I came that realization, and actually did say it out loud, it did not sound so awful...there's no reason why I should spend time doing something I don't enjoy. There's enough of that in work and other parts of my life that my "ME" time should be spent doing what I love. Letting go of this will give me more time for friends and socializing and maybe enjoying my life a bit more.

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Deb: www.thinkingcouture.blogspot.com

kkkkaty
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kkkkaty  Friend of PR
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UT USA
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In reply to Deb Fox


Date: 9/16/10 10:55 AM

oh, I hate to admit to being such a mouse, but when I was younger, friends and colleagues would get together to play softball, and I always felt that it was something I should do, for the socializing I suppose. I don't know why I wasn't even really aware that I didn't like playing softball at all, but when I finally recognized it, it was quite a relief to stop! So, I second the congratulations, and look forward to hearing more about what is next....

------
Viking Lily 545
Viking Ruby
Bernina Activa 210
Brother 1034d

quiltingwolf
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quiltingwolf  Friend of PR
Intermediate
MD
Member since 12/15/02
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Date: 9/16/10 11:14 AM

This is an interesting topic especially for me as I just took a year off from doing anything fiberarts related. I was lucky in the fact I didn't have to sew. I was introduced to the sewing machine in 7th grade and it was love at first site. My dad then brought me a cheap Singer a replica of it I got from ebay7 years ago. I've always been one to do solitary pursuits. Sewing, reading, quilting, horseback riding. Was never a joiner or like sports or group stuff. Sewing fit that need pretty well was also a very shy teen. I always wanted to be artist but was given two left hands so to speak so I can paint by fabric in making quilts. And machine embroidery fill my techie needs. There are some parts to the process that bore me but try to get through them the best I can. But it's also something that has been mine since late childhood sewing Barbie dresses by hand and has been a constant in my life when everything else has changed. When my priorities were family, home, husband etc. And because of circumstances I gave a lot of myself away to other people. Whether they deserved it or not is a whole different topic. I sew because when I sew, embroidery, quilt I am at peace with myself. And when I'm blocked my mine it letting me know something is unsettled I need to work on. The sewing light bulb just came back on so ready to drive in again.
-- Edited on 9/16/10 11:18 AM --

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quiltingwolf.blogspot.com

tourist
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tourist  Friend of PR
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BC CANADA
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In reply to Deb Fox


Date: 9/16/10 11:20 AM

Deb - in many ways I also do not love sewing, though I admit I enjoy it more now that I am doing it more since my techniques have improved somewhat and my sewing room is more geared to actual sewing as opposed to being the junk room like it used to be.

I do like the challenge of playing with patterns, making alterations to suit my unique needs and that sort of thing. But that is akin to doing crossword puzzles and other brain games. I don't actually feel relaxed or joyful while doing them but love the result. It can be thrilling when the final puzzle piece clicks into place! Actually, I sometimes lose the urge to sew the final garment after I have figured out how to do it. Weird, i know.

I do sew to save money - sort of. Sewing gets me items that I couldn't possibly buy - like DD's wedding dress, my ballroom costumes or even less grand things like the light weight cotton knee length pj pants that DS loves so much. The versions of those dresses that I would like are astronomically out of my price range. The pj pants - well, where would I begin to shop for something like that?

The sewing I really love to do is the kind where I get a brilliant idea, usually that will use up scraps and bits of stash, that is quick and easy and gives a good emotional bang for the buck. Making a gorgeous pillow cover, table cloth, really cute baby bibs etc. out of fabric that cost little to nothing is really exciting for me. DH wanted a very specific type of bike shorts that don't really exist. I was able to go into my stash, adapt a pj pant and make him up a pair that he loved. Quick, easy and impressive is what gives me a thrill.

Sewing because I have to just doesn't work for me. And rtw is so cheap (I am a bargain hunter in that department, as well) that I don't have the feeling of not being entitled to "nice things" for the most part.

Thanks for this thread! I hope it continues to be thought provoking.

------
http://bgballroom.wordpress.com to follow the progress on my next ballgown.

Amy-may
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Amy-may
Intermediate
IL USA
Member since 6/7/05
Posts: 1214
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Date: 9/16/10 8:59 PM

Well, what you describe is exactly why I rarely sew for $. As soon as a client is in the picture, it becomes a chore.

I truly love to sew and little makes me happier than wearing something I made. But, I hate alterations, and I rarely do them (despite MIL's frequent comments about how much $ I'm leaving on the table) for my own family and never for others.

Sewing feeds my soul! If it has stopped feeding yours, then take a break from sewing. Buy what you need, sew what you can't find, make a quilt just for fun... If you don't find your joy in sewing, it's not the end of the world!

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