The Benefits πŸ‘ of Making βœ‚οΈ Your Own Clothes πŸ‘šπŸ‘— ...

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Although these days we are more accustomed to walking into a shop to simply lift the clothes we want off a peg, pay for them and take them home to add to a bulging wardrobe, making your own clothes remains a major hobby craft. Recently, a BBC television programme called the Great British Sewing Bee showed that this skill is very much still alive and is one of the few things that whilst technology may have intervened to make it easier, has remained true to the original craft.

1. A Few Points on the History of Dressmaking

When humankind decided on the need for clothing for warmth and protection, fashion was born. Clothes very quickly moved from being mere garments to serve a purpose to works of art that made a statement. They also soon became an instrument defining social class. The wealthy could be easily distinguished from lower classes by the style and quality of their clothing and their dress fabric.

Throughout history, clothes making has been a major feature of society. Women have always sewn, whether it is making clothes for themselves and their family, or being a seamstress as a servant or in a commercial venture. It is somewhat incongruous that throughout the centuries as wealth became less evenly distributed, richer women would buy their clothes and invest heavily in the latest dress fabric, but the practice of embroidery was considered one of the essentials of a lady.

The growth of commerce moved much of clothes making out of the home to retail and off-the-peg, and dressmaking became a hobby or a necessity. That is, until World War II. Although there had been deprivation in Britain during the First World War, at this time, people still made their own clothes, or had them made for them. When rationing was introduced in World War II including all dress fabric, and clothing coupons had to be collected, the issue of β€œmake do and mend” found women all across the land resurrecting and employing their sewing ingenuity to revamp, alter and embellish existing wardrobes in the absence of new garments.

In the 21st century, tailoring and dressmaking are still very much alive as commercial enterprises, while for home sewing there are electronic and computerised sewing machines to work with. The art of making clothes is also no longer a female domain. Male fashion designers usually start with the basics of sewing at home.

The Basics of Home Sewing
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