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Make Your Own Clothes And Save A Bundle

Updated on January 4, 2015

You Can Learn To Make Your Own Clothes

With the price of good quality clothes - especially designer clothes always going through the roof, wouldn't it be nice if you could start making your own clothes and start saving a bundle! You're probably thinking that it is easier said than done. But, with so many easy patterns available from top pattern companies like Simplicity and McCall's, making your own clothes may be easier than you think.

Whenever I go home to NYC to visit family, I always like to stroll through Manhattan and look at the latest fashion styles in popular clothing boutiques. They are spectacular but their prices are not. My daughters always laugh at me when I start gasping of the prices of them. Many of the latest fashion designs can be made comparably close with a pattern and with a pattern from the company's easy line.

It just may surprise you what you could do with a couple yards of material, some patience, a little creativeness and ambition. Everyone has a creative side to them and you may never know what that side of you is until you give it a try, and yours may just be sewing. You may be pleasantly pleased.

There are sewing patterns available for beginners from different companies for all kinds of attire. Simplicity has a line of easy patterns as does McCall's which have some flattering fashion designs. You can access them at the following links:

Learn To Make Pants And Skirts

Two of the easiest garments to start sewing with are pants and skirts. A pattern for pants can have a minimum of two to three pattern pieces as does a skirt. A simple tank top or short sleeve shirt also have very minimal pattern pieces too for the beginner to experiment with.

When you buy a pattern, make sure to buy the correct size. The size chart is on the back of the pattern and remember that sizes vary from company to company, so it is wise to check your size on a pattern each time you buy one.

After you have purchased the pattern for your correct size, take out the instruction sheet and read it through. A big mistake many sewing beginners make is not properly reading the instruction sheet. The instructions for patterns, especially the Simplicity and McCall's line are very good for beginners. If you read the instructions on how to make the garment you want to make even before starting it, you will have a much more pleasant experience while you are making it.

Just take the time to read through the instructions and visualize in your mind sewing the garment. Another important piece of advice is to follow the layout guide for placement of the pattern pieces on the fabric. If you following the placement guide on the instruction sheet you will use the minimum amount of fabric needed for making the garment thus saving you money in the end. In the future I will write a detailed hub on how to follow a pattern for sewing a garment.

Two more companies that have fairly easy patterns for beginners are Vogue and Butterick. Vogue has been known for having high fashion patterns but mostly for the advanced sewer. This line of easy Vogue patterns is just what many beginners have been waiting for.

Soon You'll Be Making Your Own Clothes

Believe in yourself, if you ever wished you could sew, I say you can. Just remember patience, patience, patience. Take you time, don't rush and when you make a mistake, don't give up, that's what seam rippers are for! :) Take care and good luck!


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    • Rachel L Alba profile image

      Rachel L Alba 3 years ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Yes, I've noticed that we have thing in common too. I'm glad.

      Blessings to you

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 3 years ago from Maine

      Hi Rachel,

      Thank you for your comments. Happy to hear that you sew too and have made many clothes for your family. I'm sure you're a wonderful seamstress. and that you enjoyed it. It's good to see that many young people are beginning to sew again. Happy to hear that you are cooking now since your eyes don't work on small stitches. Cooking is something I love to do too. We have a lot in common!

    • Rachel L Alba profile image

      Rachel L Alba 3 years ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      When I was young with a growing family, all girls, I used to make a lot of their clothes. Even blouses and pants and dresses for my mother and mother in law and myself also. I enjoyed every minute of it too. So I was glad I saw this hub. I would also like to encourage others to do it, you'd be surprised how your creative juices could start to flow once you start. Now I don't have the patience anymore and my eyes don't work on small stitches, so I cook instead. Thanks for this hub.

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 3 years ago from Maine

      Thank you for your comment Au fait. Happy to hear that you have been sewing since you were a child like I did. Sewing does take time but is so worth it because you can design your very own unique style of clothing. Blessings to you!

    • Au fait profile image

      C E Clark 3 years ago from North Texas

      I was sewing doll clothes for my doll when I was about 5. Embroidering at age 5 also. Started sewing with a machine at age 14 and made all my own clothes except jeans, swim suits, and underwear. Made several prom dresses. It's been a long time since I sewed all my clothes as it's often cheaper to buy them -- I don't wear designer. Sewing is a great skill to have and if only I had more time . . .

      Voted up and shared!

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 4 years ago from Maine

      Hi Courtney,

      Yes, there are lots of inexpensive ones out there. Simplicity is a company that makes a line of extremely reasonable patterns for dresses.

      I wish you the best.

    • profile image

      Courtney 0227 4 years ago

      I want to learn how to but I just can't focus on all of your writing. I get the gist of it bit I need to get sewing patterns. Any cheap ones out there? Mostly dresses?

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 5 years ago from Maine

      Hi BkCreative,

      You have me cracking up! God bless you! So happy to hear that this hub has inspired you. I love you sense of humor. Please, tell me where the African fabric shop is located in Brooklyn. I am originally from NY and have two sister who live in Brooklyn. When I go home this summer I would like to go to the African fabric shop.

      The best to you!

    • BkCreative profile image

      BkCreative 5 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Oh creativelycc you may find two comments from me. I wrote a comment then went back to add to it and couldn't find it. Sigh!

      Love your hub because it is so inspiring. I need to do this because I've been blessed with a butt and clothes do not fit properly. I've made the attempt over the years and it was only ok - even laughable - but I have a feeling that now is the right time. Maybe it's because I want to step out there all fresh and new and stylish so I have to do it myself. Like you those Manhattan prices are absurd - and I still don't get a good fit.

      I think the time is right. Thanks again - and do take very good care of yourself.

    • BkCreative profile image

      BkCreative 5 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      I'm going to have to do this creativelycc! I have been blessed with a butt but try and find clothes that fit well...and you get something to fit over the butt and a gigantic waist that sticks out. I also like the creative angle of being able to look good.

      When I was in Bangkok I had a suit made. I have never had anything to fit so well and look so rich and beautiful. Wow!

      I live in NYC and I know what you mean about shopping in Manhattan. I am in Brooklyn but right downtown are also many fabric shops and then around the corner is a great African fabric shop. I'm inspired.

      Thanks again for one of your oh so creative hubs - yay!

      Take good care of yourself!

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 5 years ago from Maine

      Thank you for the lovely comments Tonipet. I'm sure you're underrating yourself on your work. I bet your project of remodeling your mother's pants came out beautiful! The best to you!

    • Tonipet profile image

      Tonette Fornillos 5 years ago from The City of Generals

      You're truly creative, creativelycc. The first time I ever sewed for my own clothing was remodeling my mother's pants so it fits me. If you have to rate the work you sure would give me 70 out of 100, haha. But I'm with you 100%, making our own clothes, from any idea we could think of, is saving us a bundle. One more best thing is we are sure of a style that we surely love. Thank you for this. I'm sharing!

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 6 years ago from Maine

      Very true and thank you for your comment milawalker.

    • profile image

      milawalker 6 years ago

      By making your own clothes you will be sure that it suits your taste as wells as your figure.

      custom clothier dallas(

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 6 years ago from Maine

      Hi vocalcoach, I am so happy this hub has encouraged you. Once you start sewing and discover that you enjoy it, you'll have a hard time putting a needle and thread down!

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 6 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      I have wanted to learn to sew for years. Now that I've read your wonderful hub on saving money ny sewing, I'm bound and determined to learn. Voted up!

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 7 years ago from Maine

      Hello messerc123,

      Happy to hear that you're working your way up in the sewing world. It's a lot of fun. Thank you for your comment!

    • messerc123 profile image

      messerc123 7 years ago from El Paso, Texas

      Well I've only sewn some pillow cases but I'm working my way up.

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 7 years ago from Maine

      Hi Llyn,

      Thank you so much for your wonderful comments. How nice to learn how beautiful clothing was reborn from the linings of used coats. I bet they were beautiful! I also bet the fabric from the parachute factory was extraordinarily beautiful and strong.

      You are right, during our present economic times, it would be a good idea to start recycling material once again.

      You are a very talented, gifted and blessed lady and I'm so happy to meet you!

    • Llyn profile image

      Llyn 7 years ago

      I have been used to sewing all my life. My mom and aunts sewed during WW11 in Wales while my father was away at war. They collected used coats turned them inside out, cleaned them and made the most beautifull coats for us or dresses and capes, etc., We could not get new fabric besides, everything was expensive and we had to have coupons as well. I remember some of my aunts sneaking home silk from the Parachute Factory so that my mother could make a wedding gown and my father managed to send a dress from Malta (beautifully hand-embroidered). So from 1941-46 everyone who married from our street had the same size flower girl - they had to fit into that dress. Although the dress was a gift for me, I believe I wore it only once. The women also did the same with men's pants and coats for the boys. I sometimes wonder with the economic picture as gloomy as it is these days whether some of these ideas will be useful again quite soon.

      These days I still make my own clothes as well as design and embroider them. Embroidery is my passion and I studied art at University so I enjoy embellishing my clothes so that they are unique. I am also lucky enough to live in a multicultural city where we are able to get many types of fabrics at reasonable prices and it is truly inspiring to sew.

      Thank you for your writing - I enjoy it very much.

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 7 years ago from Maine

      Thank you very much sarahowen for your comment!

    • sarahowen profile image

      sarahowen 7 years ago from uk

      wonderful hub for anyone who shares this interest, you write very well

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 7 years ago from Maine

      Hi Glassvisage,

      Thank you for your comment. You are right! I bet the shorts you looked at would probably only require a yard of material to make which would be a fraction of what they are priced. Do you sew?

    • glassvisage profile image

      glassvisage 7 years ago from Northern California

      You describe this very well! I think about how much I could save by making clothes... especially when I'm at the store and find a pair of shorts that have hardly any fabric but cost a fortune! :)

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 7 years ago from Maine

      Thank you so much Money Glitch for your comments and thank you for having respect for those of us who sew!

    • Money Glitch profile image

      Money Glitch 7 years ago from Texas

      My mother could sew beautifully. However, I have never been so stressed out in my life, like I was in high school making a dress. LOL! That high school year I learned quite well, that working with my hands was NOT my talent or gift. However, I have a lot of respect for those that can sew. Good hub, thanks for sharing. :)

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 7 years ago from Maine

      Thank you very much fillyourheart for your comments. Don't give up on sewing, one day give it a try again, I'm sure you'll do great next time! Thank you very much for your well wishes!

    • fillyourheart profile image

      Fill Your Heart Edible Memories 7 years ago from USA

      Your articles are great, very informative. I have always been interested in sewing. Years ago I tried making my kids some outfits but I got so aggravated with my old sewing machine because the thread kept breaking that I ended up throwing it all in a drawer and said forget it. I look forward to seeing and hearing all about what you create. Best of luck to you with your new business.

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 8 years ago from Maine

      Hi Gregotte,

      You are right, the terms can be hard to understand sometimes. In the pattern instructions there is a glossary of terms that explain what they mean, a lot of people don't realize that it is there. I hope this helps you. Good Luck and thank you for your comment.

    • grejotte profile image

      Anne-Marie 8 years ago from Montreal

      I started sewing a while ago! But I always had a hard time understanding the instructions! It should be simple, but the terms are sometimes hard to understand!

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 8 years ago from Maine

      You are so right, when you make your own clothes you can design it to personally fit your style! Thank you for your comment!

    • IvyCrenshaw profile image

      IvyCrenshaw 8 years ago from USA

      I love making my own clothing, because I can get just what I want, at an affordable price. I learned long ago that discount jeans and t-shirts were more affordable than making your own, but for quality clothing, I sew.

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 8 years ago from Maine

      Thank you for your comments Kind Regards. Yes, if you make your own lounge pants, you most certainly can choose the material that suits you best for comfort.

      I don't have an Etsy shop, my sister is always telling me I should. I do have my own website though, it is still in the beginning stages, I haven't put any of my items on it yet. Hopefully by the end of two weeks I'll have the first ones on. The URL is

      Thank you again for your comments!

    • Kind Regards profile image

      Kind Regards 8 years ago from Missouri Ozarks - Table Rock Lake

      creativelycc, I love to sew, and lately I've been thinking about making some lounge pants because I tend not to like the fabric of the ones I find in the stores. This way I'd be able to choose my own fabric and they'd be relatively simple to make too. Thank you for your well-written hubs. I shared it on Facebook. Kind Regards

      I'm curious do you have an Etsy shop? If so, I'd love to have the link to it.

    • creativelycc profile image

      Carrie L Cronkite 8 years ago from Maine

      You are right about fabric prices going up. The best thing to do is keep your eye open for sales. I buy a lot of good quality fabric on ebay at excellent prices. Also there are several fabric outlets onine that have good prices and great sales.

    • myawn profile image

      myawn 8 years ago from Florida

      I have been sewing off and on for years the bad side is fabric prices keep going up.Sewing is still one of my hobbies.


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