Sure, it is a trend to sew your clothes or to do anything handy and crafty these days. The Guardian article ‘A stitch in time’ describes that sewing clothes became a new trend in the 2010s after having disappeared for almost 20 years.
One might wonder if I just jumped on this trend with my love for everything fabric in general and with this blog in particular. But I simply love fabric and sewing.
I guess this is what held me back for quite some time. The idea of this blog is 6 years old and I have never really started it because in general, I do not like to follow trends.
I don’t like to follow trends
I prefer to do my own thing and I always liked sewing and doing handicrafts… although I might not have always admitted it. Because during my teens, this was not a cool thing. In the early 90s just after Germany’s reunification, it was even less hip to wear clothes that were “homemade”. But the truth is that I was always surrounded by fabrics and today I can see that it had a big influence on me.
A family of makers
I grew up in a family where sewing, knitting, or making anything handmade was a daily thing. At the time it was more out of a necessity for sure. But it doesn’t matter, because this is what shaped me.
My mum was an absolute knitting master. I swear she could knit a pullover in two or three evenings while watching TV. I guess this is why I am not a big knitter today although I would like to explore it more. The bigger knitter sat next to me knitting whatever needed to be knitted. Today she is knitting socks and I bet she always has a pair or two ready as a last-minute present for people.
My grandma was working as a seamstress on the side. She had learned how to sew in her early teens during a time when sewing was a good way for a woman to earn some money on the side. I grew up in her house, so basically just next to her sewing machine. Sitting under her ironing table while she was sewing clothes for anyone in the family was my childhood.
Don’t mess with my buttons
Playing with buttons was my favorite playtime at the time. She used to collect them in a former cacao card box that I must have decorated with paper flowers sometime during my childhood. I don’t remember decorating the box. In my mind, I only see the box and I remember playing with the buttons. I used to pour them all out and then start arranging them as per their color or their size. Then I would find button “brothers”, i.e. buttons that were similar or belonged to the same button family.
Similar to what my little nephew is doing today with his Spiderman figures! 🙂
Sewing haute-couture for Barbie
And fabrics? Don’t get me started on my love for fabric scraps. 🙂
Every tiny piece could be used to create some kind of avant-garde piece of fashion for my Barbie dolls. And I cranked out these dresses and skirts in no time. I did not use a machine but sewed by hand using a lot of elastic straps and tiny press buttons. No one but me knew how to put them on. This is how avant-garde these dresses were. I tell you my Barbie dolls were the best-dressed dolls in town.
Several years of sewing produced two big paper bags of dresses and clothes for them. My mum must have thrown away these bags sometime between my early teens and now. I am pretty sure, today I would most probably also not know how to put them on anymore. 🙂
Nostalgic love for fabric and sewing?
So one might wonder if my love for fabrics is a nostalgic thing. Maybe it is, maybe it is not. I am actually not sure about this. But I am certain that I am still a bit nostalgic when I think of playing with buttons. Maybe it is time to do it again.
Yes, the box with the button collection still exists in what was my grandparents’ house at the time and is now my parents’ house. Most probably some buttons have found a matching piece of clothes by now and newer ones might have joined the collection.
I don’t care about this part. It is the sound of the buttons rattling in the box when you shake it and them rolling over the floor or table that makes my heart pound faster.
Please leave your thoughts on this post with me and comment below. If you want to read more about how sewing shaped me, read my blog post on how patchwork saved my life!