Wednesday, June 29, 2011

How and where did you learn to sew?

When I was a little girl I watched my Mom and Grandmother's sew. They all had electric sewing machines, but one of my Grandmother's had a shuttle bobbin sewing machine. She made all kinds of clothing, doll clothes and sewing for others with this machine. This is a picture I found on the net from a site that showed old pictures of machines. This was dated 1853. Now my grandmother's weren't that old, but both learned on treadle machines and also by hand.
My Mother's Mother started sewing when she was 4. Her Mother was blind and needed help with guiding the fabric under the needle. She sat her daughter, my Grandmother on her lap and she treadled and Grandma would guide the fabric through the machine to make clothes for the other children in the house. The other sisters which there were 3 others never learned to do as much as my Grandmother did.
I learned by sitting on my Grandmother's lap and making blocks to then be made into potholders. I went on to make doll clothes and by the age of nine I was making my own clothing with some help. As a 20 year old I was teaching sewing for The Singer Co. I was the youngest employee to teach sewing in the State of Illinois.
I have made wedding dresses and tailored suits. Also made a liner for a casket that was built by hand. Doll clothing, drapes and curtains and costumes for lots of plays and events.
How did you learn to sew? In school, training at home, 4-H, Scouts or on your own?
I have taught my two grandkids to use a machine and also how to sew on a button. Even my grandson knows. Many times men are on their own and they need to know how to cook,do laundry and sew. Sewing can take you into a new world and then you are hooked. Let me hear how you learned to sew. Chris

3 comments:

Exuberant Color said...

I came from a non-sewing family so I learned in home ec. my freshman year and made all of my own clothes from that year on. I was in 4-H too. I learned to embroider from my grandma. I went on to have my own custom dressmaking business and did alterations for a men's store. Sewing is so fulfilling with a product at the end, unlike a meal that just leaves dirty dishes and vacuuming which needs to done over and over.

Katie M. said...

Neither my mom or grandma were sewers. Each had machines but I think my mom used hers only for making flannel jammies. I did take Home Ec in jr high school so that gave me some basics, but I'm more self taught because at the age of 22, I had two little girls and not a lot of money. So I learned to sew out of necessity and continued because I love it!

Amy, a redeemed sheep said...

My mom was a sewer and I would watch her, but didn't really learn from her. I did take a Home Ec class, but my mom did most of my project. Bad, I know...Does it help knowing I lost some pieces so I didn't finish it? All that to say, I am fully self taught. Lots of reading and watching videos on the internet is how I have learned and that learning process began 4 years ago.

Great post, Chris!