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Anyone here made an item of clothing?

I'm really tempted to try my hand at making myself a shirt.

Am going to hunt around youtube and see what advice I can find.

Any of you had a go at making any items of clothing?
A few years back, I decided to try my hand at making a kilt. After consulting with a professional kilt maker, it became evident that a kilt is definitely not a beginner sewing project, whether by machine or hand stitching (I was considering the latter).

So, first piece of advice: start with a beginner's project. A shirt, though not as advanced as a kilt, may not be the best as it requires a certain amount of tailoring.

You might first try fashioning a pillow case, or some stuff sacks. Or, if you have a girlfriend or wife, or just for practice, maybe make a gathered skirt. All good beginner projects.

If you are hand sewing and just want some needle and thread practice, get one of those darning eggs (for example, this one from Lehmans: http://www.lehmans.com/store/Home_G...ting___Wooden_Sock_Darner_Ball___701940?Args=). Darning instructions can be found on the web (http://www.myzigzagstitch.com/2009/02/26/how-to-do-it-darn-socks/). I now darn socks with a resulting doubling of their usable lifetime.
Hemming curtains works for experience, too.

Go to the thrift store. Buy long sleeve shirts, cut them down to short sleeve and hem the edges.

Best of luck.
When I was a kid, I watched my mother sew. Once, I asked her to let me make a shirt from a pattern, with me doing the sewing work. She did.

Coincidentally, during the last few days, I've spent a lot of time relearning to sew.
Curtains, slip covers, some halloween costumes, some other stuff...I use the sewing machine more than my wife. I have not made any daily wear clothing yet.

Fabric stores sell patterns which make life good and easy, but you need basic skills to sew straight and curved lines as well as keeping your fabric layers together and in sync with each other. This gets alot harder as your layer count increases. Start simple making some slip covers for pillows.

I made some body pillows into zipper cased floor pillows that coordinate with the living room furniture. My Mom helped me, but I did more than half of them. They are difficult because the straight lines are 48 inches long or so.

I altered some clothes in highschool by adding like racing stripes to my shorts and sewing **** on the pockets but never made any. My first real project was making myself a down sleeping quilt for camping with out a pattern. It was very time consuming but I ended up with a really nice looking sleeping quilt and I made it all by myself. Just measure twice and sew slow.
Would you guys recommend sewing by hand OR using a sewing machine?

I do have an old one kicking around at home that is never used.
Would you guys recommend sewing by hand OR using a sewing machine?

I do have an old one kicking around at home that is never used.

If the machine is in good condition, or can easily be repaired to good condition then learn to use the machine. It is easier and faster as hand stitching has a rather steep learning curve from a cosmetic stand point. If the machine has significant condition issues then either buy a new machine (good entry level machines can be had for a little over $100) or learn to hand sew.

Would you guys recommend sewing by hand OR using a sewing machine?

I do have an old one kicking around at home that is never used.

+ 1 to using a machine vs. By hand other than the reasons already listed I think you will also end up with a more durable finished product as well. As far as which machine to use I think that if you have a solidly built old machine it would be worth spending the money to repair vs. Buying a cheap new machine. The older if made from all metal parts like they usually are will last forever but typically need a tune up. My mom recently bought a $100 machine from walmart an used it once then put it away in the closet in the mean time I had her old kenmore ultra stitch 8 repaired and she can't get her hands off it. As the saying goes "they don't make them like they used to."
Would you guys recommend sewing by hand OR using a sewing machine?

I do have an old one kicking around at home that is never used.

If your machine is in good condition, or if you have a shop nearby that can fix it for you for a reasonable price, for the love of all things USE IT! I make articles of clothing fairly often, and I personally find it irritating to hand sew. Although, others may find it relaxing.

I second the advice not to start with a button up shirt. They have several pieces and really not that easy to start with. If you have a wife or girlfriend, really, as someone else said, do a skirt. Or do a vest for yourself. Make sure you find yourself a good pattern, as not all patterns are created equal. I just made a dress with a pattern that was missing steps in the instructions, what the pattern referred to as right side and wrong side were backwards, and the measurements were WAY off. Not *my* measurements, mind you. *Their* measurements.

Incidentally, though I've never used one, I hear good things about kwik sew's men's shirt patterns. If your dead set on doing a shirt first, I'd start there.

I sew, and have made a number of shirts. Sewing is my hobby; I make curtains and do my own alterations. You can see some shirts that I have made here:


I used David Coffin's book, and video (sorry, it's from the 90's and only available as VHS) which is probably the best shirtmaking instruction out there:


It's a steep learning curve to learn how to sew, but you can make beautiful, bespoke shirts at a fraction of a tailor's cost in any fabric of your choosing.

Machine sewing skills are necessary; hand is possible, but, IMO, to sew by hand is an even steeper learning curve.
i made my own Jedi costume in 05, and a viking tunic last year. i've also made numerous non-clothing items, but that's another topic.
I have David Coffin's Shirtmaking. It's really interesting. I haven't made a shirt, but I do some repairs. Reminds me, I have a Babylon 5 crew jacket that I wore out, pulled apart, and cut materials to replace the sleeves, but it's hanging in the closet unfinished. Need more time.


The wife's investment
Haven't made anything myself but I understand Blackfoot makes buckskin dresses that look like chaps... or something like that. :lol:

Since I can rarely find a shirt that fits properly, I would be interested in learning more about making my own. Sounds interesting.
My wife makes stuff all of the time, mainly PJs for the kids, but she also makes sundresses, tops and the like for my daughter. I am continually amazed at how well this stuff turns out! :thumbup1:
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