Sunday, May 08, 2016

Does Social Media Affect What You Sew?

I usually pose my "Question of the Day" later in the month. However, it's rained every day for the last two weeks so it's made picture taking impossible. I have two dresses and a third almost completed but need a little sunny weather to photograph them. Of course while I'm free this morning, it's rainy and gloomy out and when I head off to Mother's Day celebrations, the sun is supposed to come out. I have plans for next weekend so probably later in the month the garments will show up!

On to the Question of the Day ~ 
"Does Social Media Affect What You Sew?" 
I've been thinking about this a lot since it seems like the sewing blogosophere has been overtaken by jeans sewing and the "Boho/70's Chic" look. Then of course, each new pattern offering brings new inspiration and criticism, and the actual sewing of garments to turn your creative eye. My third thought is that sometimes when flipping through pics on Instagram and the Internet, it seems as if some people sew so quickly that they must make entire new wardrobes in a season. So does social media affect what you sew?

I can honestly say that it didn't use to. I sewed for a particular portion of my life, my work life, and I needed professional type garments that weren't featured on a lot of sewing blogs. Now that my circumstances have changed, I find I pay way more attention than I use to while I'm trying to determine what's my new sewing style.

I use to admire another person's style or technique, incorporating what worked for me, leaving behind the vast majority of items because they didn't apply. Now that I can wear whatever, at times the offerings can confuse or overstimulate me, making it harder to choose what to sew at what time...and causing me to question what I should sew. I know I'm not alone here so talk back to me and let me know what you think!


BTW, it's Mother's Day here in the US, so I'm wishing all the Mothers, Mothers to be and wanna be Mothers - "Happy Mother's Day!" 

...as always more later!

42 comments:

  1. I look at blogs, Pinterest and Instagram. I am significantly older than many of the women whose work I look at, so often copying their style would just be soooooo wrong. I am more interested in color, Fabrics and new patterns. I then go about sewing only the colors, Fabrics and styles that suit me and my style. I wear casual, sporty but classic styles. For instance, I skipped the whole birkin flares phenomena. Why? I am short, 56, and not interested in seeing something that be unfashionable in a few months. I did, however, buy the Morgan jeans pattern. They are classic jeans that I would wear an snow I can have them to fit me exactly. I try to avoid buying that hot pattern that would just be a hot mess on someone my height and age.

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  2. It seems like most of the people I follow on Instagram sew lots of dresses, whcich I never wear. So, no, I am not affected by what I see. Perhaps I need to look around some more and find folks who sew separates? Also, can you tell me wear the jeans discussions are? I am missing those, so perhaps I am not reading the right blogs

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    Replies
    1. Oops, tell me "where the jeans...". Funny auto correct !

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    2. Here:

      http://closetcasefiles.com/ginger-jeans-sewalong/

      and here:

      http://www.basteandgather.com/shop/birkin-flares

      Also a great way to search is to Goggle the subject Ie sewing jeans and the word blog:

      sewing jeans blog

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  3. I sew for the life I have and the body shape I have. It is interesting to look at what others do but only 10% would work for me. I sew for style and workmanship not trends. I want garments that last more than a season.

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  4. Well, I'm influenced to a certain extent by blogs written by someone in, or near my age bracket (60's) and I did jump on the Boostrap Boyfriend Jeans pattern after Barb (Sewing on the Edge) reviewed them but that was only because I was in need of jeans at the time. I don't do Facebook, Instagram or Pintarest so if it's not on a blog, normally does not hit my radar. I have had both successes and failures with patterns reviewed that I then purchased but that happens with all patterns. I now give myself a talking to if I'm about to select something really out of my comfort zone based on what's seen on a blog. Usually my inner critic is right. I value blogs because they give me the opportunity to see a wide range of clothing on all types of people the choices I make can be refined.
    Theresa in Tucson

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  5. I am afraid that I am highly influenced by the outfits I see on blogs. For example, I've got short dresses on my mind when I've actually tried one in the store recently I realized they don't look all that good on me. Or to be more clear the ones that look good on the girls on the fashion blogs or sewing blogs don't necessarily work on my body type. It's too easy to buy a pattern on sale so my enthusiasm usually feels some unnecessary purchases in my stash.What I try to do is find someone who has my body type and then see what looks good on them. This helps curb some of my look and buy behavior

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  6. Recently I've felt like reading of sewing blogs is outstripping my actual sewing. In that I've not sewn anything for ages, but have read loads of blogs. The irony is that I got into sewing as a child in order to wear different things.... So I don't really know why I read blogs... I'd stop, but I'm addicted, haha!

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  7. Carolyn this is a great question!!! I'll admit I am a little guilty as a sewist and as an influencer[ I'm not sure if ti's really a word, I got that red skwiggly line on that one]

    As a sewist. I appreciate all the looks that I come across on social media and there are patterns that come out and I fall in love just as everyone else does.I buy them and I make them. So yes I've sewn things that were influenced by social media but let me clarify something, I do not let it influence me OFTEN but it does happen, I'm guilty! I agree with the other comments the look has to work for me or my daughter or I let it pass me by without a second thought.

    Now as Blogger/Influencer I want to present items and introduce to my followers new things and open their minds to the possibilities of what they can do. So when I blog or post to social media I absolutely want you to jump on board and give it a try or at the very least make you think about it! I was a part of the Morgan jean pattern testing and one of the reasons I participated is because I was determined to master jeans and they were one step in the process.

    [OOOooooh yeah the 70's will always be my favorite era of all times, so whenever I can add a 70's vibe I will.]

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  8. I like Blogs because they raise my awareness of what is out there. When I returned to sewing, there were times when I would be extremely reluctant to cut into the fabric, in case I spoiled it, made mistakes, or the finished item just did not suit me. But then, i found Pintrest, and I could see what patterns looked like when made up. Very reassuring.

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  9. A lovely Mother’s Day to you and your family!

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  10. Great question! I have been pondering this, with all the Me Made May postings going on, which I love BTW. I sew very slowly, like one garment a month, at the most, so I rarely get caught up in trends. I try very hard to examine my lifestyle and body type before investing time and money into a pattern that just won't work. But, when I am considering a pattern I definitely check out pictures and reviews before jumping. So I guess the answer is that I use social media to determine what my best choices are, and then to see those made up IRL.

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  11. Happy Mother's Day! Yes, what I see on social media influences what I make. Even if what a person posting (blog, instagram, mostly) chooses something far outside my comfort zone, I look at color combinations, technique, etc. However, like Wendy and others, if I'm considering a pattern, I look to see who's made it and how it worked for them. I look for people who seem to have a similar body shape as mine to understand how the pattern may look on me. In general, I don't get caught up much in trends, though. I have a Lady Skater pattern that I've never used, for example. Thanks for the question!

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  12. Happy Mother's Day Carolyn. It's been raining here too and is kinda chilly. I enjoy looking at creative makes on social media but it doesn't have any influence on what I sew unless it really catches my eye then I'm trying to figure out how to put my own spin on it. I am more influenced by designers and (most recently) the occasional magazine ad.

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  13. Happy Mother's Day and happy Sunday! Good question. I'm not very active on social media so minimal influence. But not "none" because when I'm researching what to make next, I tend to seek out bloggers with a figure similar to mine to see what looks good on them and how certain patterns work for them. Also, because we move so often, I am careful about what I add to my sewing studio.

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  14. I'm impressed with the sewing productivity of others, but I know I don't have the time or need for that many new clothes. I'm more likely to be influenced by the makes of people my age and shape.

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  15. I am glad you asked this question because it made me really think about this. I used to buy many patterns that I saw posted on blogs, but they just sit there unused. I am in my 60's and retired so I don't need many dress clothes. I have started reading the reviews in Pattern Review because I am liking the indie patterns more and more - they suit my lifestyle more than Vogue which is mostly dresses. So I am always looking for reviews of Jaelie, Silhouette and Loes Hinse patterns. I love watching Peggy Sager's webcasts showing how she puts patterns and fabrics together and have been hugely influenced by that. So what I am saying is that I am influenced, but only by the ones that reflect my age and lifestyle.

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  16. Happy Mothers Day - I find that I am influenced by social media more than I ever thought I would be . I try to search out info/ blogs that have similar body type, age (65) etc. but I have found myself ordering a pattern or fabric based on how cute it looks on the blogger - sometimes more than 1/2 my age. Sewing is a fun process so I try to look at items I've made that don't work as a learning experience. That can also be tough if you have a lot of time, money in a wadder .

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  17. I am influenced by blogs and social media. Sometimes I rethink the pattern when I'm at the pattern drawers, but occasionally rethink the purchase. And then rarely the patterns actually get made up. g

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  18. Roisin Muldoon has hijacked my stash. But a fella sister in novelty prints can't be entirely blamed: that dang gooseberry print only found its way into my stash (my preciousssssss) because of YOU.
    As for what I sew, probably. Like MaryEllen, if I see something on someone my shape and it speaks to me, I will think about it. Certainly more than if I was just looking at the pattern envelopes.
    And Pattern Review. But it's been a happy process.

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  19. It definitely does but in a positive way. I am mostly influenced by that great waster of time known as Pinterest. I sew mostly classics but what I consider classic might be different from most because I sew Gothic clothing. My latest obsession is called Dark Mori or Strega fashion. It is lots of layers in dark colours. I love the look. It's comfortable and surprisingly practical. I wear dresses daily so I am not caught up in the denim pattern craze that seems to be popular lately. Sewists were all over making jeans 20 years ago. I didn't see the appeal then and I don't see it now either. Although I don't wear Rockabilly dresses (50s style) normally, I do love following bloggers that do. The vintage sewers are fun to follow. :)

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  20. I'm not necessarily influenced by sewing blogs. I find inspiration from fashion/style blogs and I'll see if I have a pattern that will work for the look I'm creating in my mind. I just recently reached for a 10 year old pattern because it worked for what I had in mind. So pattern hoarding for me works, because trends are cyclical.

    Like Michelle (That Black Chic), I don't necessarily find a great deal of inspiration in sewing blogs (I find techniques there). I'm more of an influencer and show other sewing bloggers how to translate style and trends through sewing.

    And yes, I'm a very prolific sewer. I create complete wardrobes every season. I like clothes! But I'm a MAJOR donator to women's charities in my area. So nothing goes to waste.

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  21. Yes and no.
    I sew for my shape and size and the clothes I actually wear as opposed to the clothes I'd love to wear if I had somewhere appropriate to wear them. Just because every blogger is sewing the indie pattern du jour doesn't mean I will.

    But I do take inspiration from other bloggers. Sometimes I'll see a pattern that I wouldn't have come across myself. Or I'll look at a book I might not have bothered with.

    But in general I use the same rules for sewing as I do for shopping: just cos it's in fashion doesn't mean I should wear/sew it!

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  22. I've never really been the sort of sewist to jump on the band wagon of every popular pattern or sew along. However, I do look at and am influenced by social media as a source of learning and inspiration. I think if you know your style, sm can help you identify patterns that will work for you and perhaps open you up to new avenues of sewing you hadn't considered. I never really thought about sewing jeans until recently and am really enjoying it. I also have sewn a number of indie patterns that I probably would not have without seeing them in the interwebs. That said, I try to only glean the best of what I think would work for me and also pushes my fashion boundaries a bit, instead of getting swept up in every fad.

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  23. What a great question. Had to ponder a bit about the big picture, too. At my age, 67, a work related wardrobe is in the past. I absolutely LOVE reading/looking through blogs. They make me feel part of a big, creative sewing family. However, their impact on what I sew is negligible. They do have an effect on fabrics I look for and/or trims. In my world, young and trendy has been replaced by mature and classy. I've relegated jeans to working around the house and garden. I do create a fair number of classic line trousers, vests and comfortable yet nicely fitted blouses. T-shirts are my go to for working in my studio with inks, glitter, glues, paint and markers.

    Blogs help me stay connected to the fashion world. I may not be inclined to wear the newest inspirations but I totally appreciate the effect it all has on the artistic part of my brain. Comments made by others, color combinations, flow of designs, reworks and repurpose of patterns add to all parts of my creative life and for that I am truly thankful to the blogosphere.

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  24. The sewing blogs do influence me in that they teach me a lot and I am influenced by pattern reviews by someone who is of a similar build and/or age.

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  25. I sew for utility and because it's a relaxing and enjoyable hobby. So I'm pretty good about sewing what I need. From there, I AM influenced by the sewing world -- but moreso because of drab, dated pattern covers. I see something made up and am able to see it in a new light. But I don't go out and sew everything that is "popular" at the moment.

    There are a couple of people who will "make me" buy a pattern I was not otherwise interested in. We have near identical measurements and make MOST of the same adjustments on patterns. Or someone whose style is close to mine. E.g., I can admire some of the creations by the more creative ladies but there's no time where I'm going to sew a full, pleated Ankara maxi skirt. I admire it, comment, and keep on scrolling.

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  26. This is an interesting question! I started to sew a year and a half ago and in the beginning what I saw on the web affected me a little bit. Having found a new passion, my will was to sew as much as possible to improve my skills...so for the first six months I didn't care about my personal style so much and I sewed up whatever I liked. The result was that I sewed beautiful garments, but I wore some of them rarely. Then I realized I wanted to sew garments that I can wear every day and my sewing habits changed. Now I'm focused on what I really like and I wear every garment I sew a lot. I admire what I see on Instagram, Pinterest and blogs but I try not to be influenced. Lately my question is: "what do I need?" and then I start to search the right model, fabric and pattern. And my me-made garments are a lot more suitable for me now.

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  27. I have never been very influenced by what others see, but I do love to see what is being made----the styles and fabrics. Mostly I love learning new ways to sew better.

    I love to sew tops and sew what I like to wear, but I do enjoy reading fashion sewing blogs!

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  28. I like reading reviews of patterns and hacks. I also like seeing what different body types look like in the styles. I find it helpful. Occasionally I will jump on the bandwagon, but like many above have noted, a lot of the styles are not appropriate for my age/size, or simply look too juvenile to me. I appreciate the work, but the style can be white hot and I just don't care if it isn't "me".
    Happy Mother's Day!!

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  29. If it weren't for social media, I'd probably still be sewing the Big 4, blissfully unaware of the virtues of indy patterns. It was first the reviews on the old Patternshowcase retail site, which I stumbled on to from an add in Sew News, that introduced me to Indy patterns, and a news item from Patternshowcase led me to PatternReview and Sewing World (now replaced by Stitcher's Guild), and relationships formed there got me to attend my first Sewing and Quilting Expo in Atlanta in 2004. I would never have thought of sewing a coordinated wardrobe a la SWAP, and I certainly would never have wandered into the funky world of Sewing Workshop had I not seen those patterns made up. Do I decide my next project based on the latest pattern everyone in the world is sewing? Um, maybe occasionally (thinks of the McCall's 6559 Maxi dress, which I certainly would not have considered for myself had I not seen other Women of A Certain Age making them and looking fabulous in them)...but most definitely, my approach to sewing and how to fit and how to mix and match has been influenced by the information I've gleaned over the years from sewing social media. And thanks to everyone who has contributed to that!!!

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  30. I think it'd be pretty naive to say I'm not influenced by what I see other folks sewing. Like, right now, I'm sewing a jumpsuit -- and years ago I was so anti-jumpsuit! (I'm still not sure how I feel about jumpsuits and using public restrooms.) But seeing so many makes that looked great, I decided to go for it.

    I take encouragement, fabric/pattern combos, and tons of tips to heart, but I definitely maintain my own style and pattern collection.

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  31. I find it very interesting seeing what others are sewing. I usually read the sewing blogs but since my available time for "Internet quality browsing" has become significantly shorter, I don't comment as often as I used to. In the past year I began using Instagram and Facebook more often too

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  32. I think it does but only a little bit. Once I bought a pattern that everyone on the sewing blogs was excited about but I was way behind everyone else and I feel like I missed out on being "in" on the fun. I do often see things that make me think, "Oooo, I want that," or "I could do something like that" but mostly I go my own way is mostly unfashionable and unpopular so my blog is mostly ignored by the online sewing community. That does cause me to be tempted to sew to impress the internet but I try to only sew things I know I will wear.

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  33. I think in some way it does influence me. I see a garment posted by someone similar in size and statue and it appeals to my style preferences then I will jump to get that pattern. I have yet to make a maxi dress or skirt, I am short 5'3" and I think it will swallow me up. I then see someone else post a maxi and think maybe I should; yet I have not gone there.

    Because of my health issue with my leg, I wear pants almost all the time and never really was a pants girl. So I focus on tops and really need to work on making some pants. I do find myself looking at pants others are wearing and making and know that it has some influence on me.

    I still find I am influenced by the printed magazine than an emagazine.

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  34. That is a great question. The internet has influenced my sewing a great deal and the particulars varied over the years. For example, there was a time when I tackled time-consuming projects because I knew I could write blog posts about the process, and I knew that would help me follow through. Before I was a blogger, my attention span was A LOT shorter and I seldom tried to sew anything unless I knew I could do it quickly. But lately, I find the internet influences me a lot less. The last few years seem like everything is all about patterns, especially new indie pattern offerings from amateurs. I've been disappointed in the quality of the drafting most of the time, and, at the same time my aging body subtly deviated even more from the typical fitting block used in commercial patterns. So, now I focus on my own self-drafted patterns and I sew the same patterns over and over. In this way, I am sewing for myself and my lifestyle and NOT for the internet. I am not doing what is popular, but that is a good thing (for me). OK, now I will post my comment and read what everyone else thinks :)

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  35. This is a great "thought provoking" post! Since I retired, it has definitely been a STRUGGLE for me to figure out what my new clothing style will be! While I do include some trends in my wardrobe, I don't follow them totally because I know some won't fit my current lifestyle. I'm no longer in the corporate setting and prefer a more casual (but classic) look. I'm still trying to figure it out now unfortunately! :(

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  36. I don't think of it so much as influence for myself, that is; however, I like to say that I'm constantly inspired! While we are all different and have different styles, I believe that the inspiration for the love of sewing is what motivates and fuels me. I think the key is whether you are inspired or influenced; is that you stay true to your own style.

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  37. Well I guess when in high school and a slave to fashion I looked over magazines and would sew based on the latest looks. Now (still a fashion lover) I seem to follow style blogs and sewing blogs to keep up with latest trends and sew what fits in which my more casual style. I do try patterns that are "everywhere" and recommended - I finally have an Archer blouse on my cutting table. It is hard to keep up with all that is out there and sometimes a bit overwhelming at how quickly people can sew up things and still work!

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  38. I'm definitely influenced by social media- it's how I find new patterns, new shapes, new styles. However, I'm not just sewing on a whim whenever I see something I like. I have very little time to make things these days, so I'm sort of taking in tons of inspiration and then trying to figure out what works for my life (no fit & flares, no lace, etc) and prioritize the things that inspire me that I actually will wear.

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  39. I think the effect for me is twofold. One positive is that I find new textiles that I didn't know were available for the domestic sewer (I.e. powernet), and shapes I would have snubbed in a RTW shop (I.e. shape shape). The other effect is slight annoyance and frustration underpinned by desire. I pined after the Bombshell for a very long time but never bought it and drafted my own pattern (in a different style) instead. I spent hours trawling indie sites (via blog recommendations) for the perfect kids hoodie pattern, only to find the silhouette and detail I wanted in a McCall's pattern. Sometimes I feel social media helps to reveal more choice than we ever needed to know about - like dozens of different free shapes/silhouettes for an elephant plushie!

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