Sewing your own clothes isn’t just a fun and rewarding hobby. It helps to develop consciousness of the labour that goes into the things we wear and encourages us to appreciate quality rather than transient trendiness. It can also be good for the environment, especially if you’re careful with your fabric selection and make clothes to last.
Many of us have experienced the pangs of longing that lifestyle blogs tend to inspire. The tousle-haired children! The green smoothies! The photogenic pets! But I find the best of these blogs do one thing, and they do it well. Enter the sewing blogosphere, an amazing resource for anyone looking to get into the world of clothes-making. Back in the day access to this kind of knowledge was limited to those of us with patient grandmothers, but now anyone can dip in their toes.
For the curious wannabe, seasoned stitcher, or simple DIY voyeur, here are some of Otter’s favourite sewing blogs for you to peruse and enjoy.
Sew Busy Lizzy is run by a former craft editor who makes feminine pieces with an emphasis on casual prints and classic cuts.
A peter pan contrast collar blouse.
Casual, draped brown jacket.
This classic straight-cut pocketed skirt with asymmetrical pleating.
Zo Sews chronicles the seamstressing of PR worker Zoe from Melbourne. Her projects tend toward vintage-inflected dresses and versatile pants and skirts, making for a quirky overall aesthetic.
This fancy, flowing Summer dress.
Wide-legged Samurai style pants.
A structured, bubble-silhouette dress.
Amy of Sew Amy Sew only took up sewing in 2012, but her projects list is densely populated by pants, tops and dresses in loud, hip prints.
This versatile blouse with neck tie detail and buttons up the back.
A simple mini skirt that sits high on the waist, with bonus hidden pockets.
This funky, 70s-pattern floral blazer.
Peter Lappin describes his blog Male Pattern Boldness as the world’s most popular men’s sewing blog. While we love MPB, we will point out that the competition is slim! Maybe more men will take it up under his influence.
Very contemporary flannel shirt.
Peter’s top ten sewing tips for the newbie! A great resource packed with useful advice.
This series of posts hosts a jeans sew-along.
Sew Delicious features quilts, blankets, purses and children’s clothing sewn by Melbourne mum Ros, who started sewing in 2010 for her two little girls.
This super-simple nurse costume for kids!
A sewing machine cover for when you’ve had enough of looking at blogs and decided to throw yourself in the deep end.
How to upcycle a baby blanket into a children’s t-shirt.
Relatively new blog K+L is run by research scientist Katy and best friend Laney, featuring fresh women’s fashion in beautiful materials. K+L’s style skews young and hip.
Upcycling a vintage lamé dress suit into a pair of beautiful shorts.
K+L try out circle skirts.
A satin-accented sheer dress shirt.
Rochelle of Lucky Lucille sews all things 1940s, including reproduction of outfits on the front of vintage pattern packets.
An amazing 40s-style dress made to match the picture on the pattern sleeve.
This New England day dress, apron-style and whimsically feminine.
A very simple modern-style shift dress.
Sallie Oh sews beautiful, stylish pieces and classic keepers for herself and her partner Nick.
An absolutely gorgeous casual maxi dress, with retro-inflected styling.
Men’s casual pants, modelled by her husband Nick.
Photo credit: Durham Dundee (CC)