I recently discovered, through Twitter of all places, that there was a show called The Great British Sewing Bee. Why I had never heard of it before, I have no idea. I am happy to admit that I have sat and binge watched the first 3 seasons and I need to get up to date on the 4th. While I watch it and fill with inspiration and motivation, I have one question that keeps coming to mind... Why don't we sew anymore?
I know maybe a handful of people who sew; people I've gone to TAFE with, my mother and grandmothers, and a couple of mums I've come to know through various ventures. Sewing is no where near as common as it was say 40-50 years ago. It just used to be the done thing, if you couldn't afford to buy ready made you recreated it. So why don't we do it anymore?
Because we have fast fashion available.
Fast fashion is collections of clothing that bring the catwalk trends to mainstream fashion as quickly as they are seen on the runways. With the new trends coming out so fast people may have stopped trying to keep up making there own garments. Mass production dropped the prices so everything was more widely available, hell you can get a t-shirt from Kmart for $4 now!
People stopped repairing their own garments.
It used to be the done thing, repair/rework an item of clothing until there was nothing more that could be done to give it new life. These days it seems that each item is a single wear garment that either falls apart or becomes dated and is donated or resold. Tailors are a dying breed, you have the small alteration shops in the shopping centers, but nothing like we used to have or London's Saville Row.
We don't have time.
We are so overwhelmed with the goings on in our lives that it's just easier to drop a few dollars on something cheap to wear. We have to balance; working, our social lives, some of us need to juggle kids and/or relationships, there really is a lot going on for everyone. I'm sure spending a few hours to make something is the least of their worries.
But you know what?
I enjoy the process of creating clothes for myself and for others. From drafting the custom patterns, to fitting and toiling, even to putting the whole thing together. It makes me feel really accomplished that I was able to create something that is useful and beautiful out of a flat piece of fabric. Plus it's more affordable in the long run in my opinion, and you are assured that you will like it because you made it! I think everyone should try it at least once. If you do, do let me know how you go.