Finding modest, stylish clothing at the mall or department stores is extremely difficult these days. Modesty is extremely important to me, but I don’t want to walk around looking like a prairie lady either (no offense to prairie ladies of course). I just want to look stylish and put together, while remaining true to my principles. That being said, I have decided that I’m setting a goal for myself to have 80-90 percent of my clothing to be handmade. I will be working for the next several months on creating a wardrobe that is stylish, unique, and modest.
Before you say, “What? That’s a lot of work,” remember that those prairie ladies:) made all their own clothes and they had a lot more tasks and chores to complete than I do! If they did it, I sure can. Now, just because things are handmade doesn’t mean they have to look that way. Or possible I should say, they don’t have to look ill fitting or unfinished. Finishing a garment gives confidence to the person wearing it and can lengthen its life. Let me give an example of little things that can be done to complete a handmade outfit to make it look store bought.
1. Finished Seams: If you take the time to serge your seams, it will greatly reduce fraying and strengthen the seams of the garment. Plus it gives a more polished finished to the seams. Of course, people can’t see the inside of the clothing, but you can, and that’s important!
2. Don’t skimp on interfacing: If the pattern calls for interfacing, make sure you use it. Otherwise your collar, or whatever you are sewing, will be floppy and not lay right. I know this is elementary, but I have skipped interfacing before because I forgot to buy it, and I have always regretted it!
3. Lining, Facings, and Tacking: Take the time to line things properly, especially dresses. Facings are so important because they usually are in prominent places that are easily seen, like the neckline. Also, be sure to carefully tack things down so that they will lay properly and not become undone when the garment is washed.
4. Add Your Own Special Touches: Sign your work:) Some people like to put tags or labels on their clothes. I like to put a little ribbon bow in the things I make. I think it adds a girly touch:)
I know that these points are so basic, but it’s a great reminder for all of us and it’s helpful to beginning seamstresses.