Side Trip Into Clothing Construction

I made my own clothes for years before I started quilting, as did many women my age. Once I had a steady income and a family, it became much more efficient to buy clothing than to make it, but I still get the itch to make something to wear from time to time.

I recently found this interesting fabric on a sale table and the bug bit.

I have had this pattern for years but haven’t made anything from it, so I decided it was time.

And here’s the shirt.

It fits fine and is comfortable. This is an easy pattern, so it took only 4 hours to make. If my time is worth even as much as federal minimum wage, I would have been ahead to buy something ready made.

That probably won’t keep me from making clothing, though.

20 thoughts on “Side Trip Into Clothing Construction

  1. Oh, I’m just like you! I learned to sew clothes first (made them for myself and our two children) and later found it easier to buy ready-made. Still, I know the feeling about needing to make something now and then. This top is just adorable! You chose your fabric and pattern well. Looks like an old pattern too! Unfortunately, when we moved, I ridded myself of 90 percent of my garment patterns, and of course now I regret it. New patterns aren’t cheap. And was nice to pull a pattern that’s tried and true. You never know with the new ones. So, good for you to make this one! Even with the time spent, you have a totally unique item to wear, and that’s the best part!

    • Ohhhh, yes, I just got rid of most of my patterns for our move, too. I’ll probably miss one of them at some point, but we’ve gotten rid of a lot in our years of moving about and seldom miss any of it.

  2. Very nice! And the fabric is quite interesting. When I was a child, my aunt used to make my dresses. She would let me pick my fabric and design the dress, and she would construct it with no pattern. She also made my doll clothes. My aunt taught me how to make my own clothes. We even collaborated on making a two piece bathing suit. I made a few costumes for my sons, but never really made them clothes. A few years ago, I tried making me a tunic top and a dress. Both were more work than they were worth. Maybe, if I find a worthwhile pattern, I might try again.

  3. Like others I did a lot of garment sewing in my younger years. When I factored in that only half of the finished items pleased me, it became too expensive. I shifted my attention to thrift shops where I could try garments on. And to quilting.

  4. Quite impressive…maybe your quilting skills helped augment a greater ease in which you stitched up this latest custom top after ‘all these years’!
    In the beginning, sewing clothes was for us penny pinchers…but over the years of accuring high rise prices on fabric etc it is done more for creating something unique and/or something with better fit than average off-the-rack clothing.
    This is just such an item!

  5. Ditto. I think once they became harder to fit, I gave up (plus I entered grad school, so that killed it too). I love this top–it just says “Summer,” so maybe I should try again. Great pattern, too!

    • I’m not sure my grandmother would even make quilts at today’s fabric prices! I remember being with her in the basement of Woolworth’s when she bought fabric, but I’m sure it was under $1 a yard!

  6. I love it! I started out learning how to sew crooked quilts at age 32, and have hacked together a few geranium pattern dresses for my daughters since. Button holes terrify me, and no matter how many tutorials I watch I cannot do Peter Pan collars – or any collar meant to be stiff. And yet I still get the bug to create stuff for my kids myself, even if the pants cost hundreds after adding in time, labor, pattern and fabric… that shirt is beautiful, bravo!

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