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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Sewing Days: My first muslin

I've known how to sew since I was maybe around 4. There's a picture of me somewhere, 3 or 4 years old, just going for it on my mini sewing machine. That should mean that 20 years later, I am an excellent sewist. Sadly, not the case. I always took it for granted that I "knew how to sew", and thus, never tried to learn how to do anything differently, better, or...really, learn anything at all.

Recently I decided that I wanted to learn to sew garments, and that I would prefer them to not, as it were, look like crap. I learned that a "muslin" is a mock-up of the garment you want to make in a cheap fabric that you don't mind drawing on, writing on, or setting fire to after the 300th time you tried to get the invisible zipper in. This is my muslin of a lovely vintage gathered skirt that I got from this tutorial. I used a sheet that I bought at a thrift store that had been mislabeled and didn't fit on my bed.

I'm glad that I made this muslin. I learned a lot of things about myself in the process. I love hand-sewing pieces of a garment. It feels so...special. Like I'm really making it. As opposed to just running it through a machine. Maybe that's silly. Maybe not. I do not likes the zippers. There isn't much to customize about this skirt, but I tried anyway. Even though I don't know really how to sew and had to look every step up in multiple youtube videos. I ended up changing very few things from the original skirt. I'm glad I took the time to play with fabric that I don't love, to learn all the things. Normally, one wouldn't go so far as to handstitch the waistband or the hem on a muslin, but since I am learning, it seemed like good practice. Until I am more comfortable sewing, I probably will continue to make the mock-ups as close as possible to the finished garment.

Oddly, I don't find this at all boring, but very satisfactory. If it wasn't entirely see through, scratchy, and un-zippable, I would totally wear this muslin around.

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