If I’ve realized anything from spending countless hours pinning on Pinterest and keeping up with my faves on Bloglovin’, it’s that I don’t actually have to try every DIY project I come across. Sometimes it’s good enough to simply admire it, compliment it with a comment or two, and then just move on. I would ‘pin’ it or add it as a favorite with every intention of trying it out someday, but that day never comes and I just find myself becoming a DIY project hoarder. I don’t even log on to my Pinterest board as often as I used to because it has become cluttered with so many projects that my pin boards have become a virtual version of my garage – I know it’s there but it’s so cluttered that I don’t even want to look at it. This unfortunate habit is a result of the “I can make that” attitude I’ve adopted over the DIY years. I’ve found, however, that I apply a completely different filter when it comes to my sewing projects because, as much as I’d like to sew my own wardrobe – from my daily wear to my special occasion dresses – it simply wouldn’t be realistic for me to do so.
As infatuated as I am with sewing, designing, and upcycling, I don’t deny that I love to (and do) shop just as much as anyone else. And when I do, the voice inside my head continues to say, “I can make that” every time I see a dress I want to buy. It can be daunting when it comes to deciding what I want to buy and what I want to make, until I read an article from Love Sewing Magazine “Sewing vs. Buying“. The advice in that article is right on target and I realized that I do apply those considerations in my sew vs. buy decision making process, I’ve just never quite delineated my criteria, thus making the process seem inundating. So, in addition to the advice on Love Sewing’s article, here are a few other ‘filters’ I use for myself in a way that works for me, my needs, and my lifestyle.
From Love Sewing:
– Affordability: is it more affordable to buy it or make it?
– Time: will the time it takes be worth it?
– Originality: “one of the best reasons to make your own clothes”
– Hard work pays off: the biggest reward
A few of my own:
– Fabric Speaks: when I have (or find) fabric that’s just screaming to be made into something
– Custom Made: I sometimes want three of the same pair of pants, in three different colors
– Practice: I’m always learning new techniques that I want to try on a style I’ve seen in a store
– Quality: some fast fashion prêt a porter (or Ready-to-Wear) styles aren’t as well made as I wish they were
– Upcycling: if I can upcycle a garment into one that I’ve seen in the store, I’ll definitely upcycle first!
This week’s project is a prime example of something I’d make over something I’d buy. This skirt, $88 from Saffron Rare Threads, I made for less than $10 in less than 2 hours. I’m only 5’2” (5’3” on a good day) and many maxi skirts are too long for me so I often have to raise the hem on most of the maxi skirts/dresses I buy.
Custom Made: check
Hard work pays off: check!