When I was 12, I found the perfect dress to wear to my cousin’s wedding. Unfortunately, it was a size too small and we were in a thrift store, where you can’t just try the next size up. Determined to have the dress I wanted, I taught myself how to sew and created it in time for the wedding.
Since then, I’ve been a seamstress of sorts.
I don’t sew most of my clothes, but I often use my skills to do little things like hem pants or do other sorts of alterations. A basic knowledge of sewing, especially how to do alterations, has saved me a lot of money and frustration.
For example, it’s almost impossible for me to find pants that fit perfectly in the store. But I can often find ones which are built for a slightly taller woman and just need a hem. Or this past weekend, I bought a lovely sundress which doesn’t fit at the top. But a cursory look at the stitching told me I could easily take it in. It was only $4.50 at a thrift store. Frugal win.
A friend of mine was recently lamenting the lack of tailors in this country. She grew up in the Philippines, where she would go shopping and simply head to a tailor’s shop afterward to have them fitted. The clothes were the same sort of ready-to-wear factory stuff that you get here in the States, only people didn’t assume that they’d actually be ready to wear.
If sewing is not your thing, that’s ok. But keep tailoring in mind if you’re always finding clothes that almost fit. You can find tailors at many dry cleaning operations, or in your phone book under Tailors (ours lists both independent tailors and dry cleaners with on-site tailors. You’d be surprised at how little it’ll cost you to do a number of simple alterations which can make an outfit fit just right.
Special bonus of being able to sew? I was able to sew my own wedding dress for nothing but the cost of the materials. (Grazie, Connie & Peter for the lace.)