Now, I'm not here to moan. It is frustrating to have made a garment that I'm not actually going to wear, but it occurred to me this morning that I don't actually mind that much. I've been here before and I know what it is. It's a Wearability Learning Curve.
I think most of us who sew recognise the stages of this chart - well, probably everyone does, but as far as I'm concerned sewing is the area of my life where this plays out most obviously and concretely. And I sorta feel like I've been through it all once, and now I'm doing it again.
I went through a massive learning curve with fitting and sewing wovens, making skirts, dresses and woven blouses or tees, and finally I think I've pretty much conquered it. I know fairly instinctively what style of pattern will (or won't) suit me, which patterns to take a risk on, which fabrics to pair with them, how to execute the vague design idea in my head, which inspirational urges to follow and which ones to judiciously ignore. As a result, I have a good lot of homemade smart-casual clothes that I wear to work almost every day. Clothes that I feel flatter me, and that express who I am in a way I feel good about. Clothes that fit and are comfortable. To me, this is the very definition of wearability.
But, since somewhere this spring, it's become not quite enough. I want to make my off duty clothes too. And there, I'm a lot less successful. I hardly wear my Briar dress. Attempts to add to my sweatshirt and slouchy dress collection fell flat. Recent makes include a Red Velvet dress and another Renfrew that just don't quite work for me, even though there's nothing really wrong with them. It's because wearability for what I like to wear on a weekend involves a whole lot of sewing things I haven't mastered yet.
My false sense of security came and went earlier this year when, thanks to having acquired a serger, I finally felt able to sew with knits. They no longer scare me, and I thought - hey! Now I can make whatever I want!!! But, um, choosing a pattern? Matching that with the right fabric, in terms of both drape and print? Fitting stretch stuff? Hahahaaaa!! I have a LOT to learn. Oh man, a lot.
I'll be showing you my recent 'failed' makes; they're not that bad. With each one I get closer to the elusive day when my instincts get it right, not wrong. I can live with the frustration of not having that self-stitched comfy knit dress immediately. But still.
Phew, that curve is looking steep from here!
What about you? Where are you on your sewing learning curve at the moment?
Are there kinds of sewing you feel you've mastered, while still being scared of others?
And finally, how do your home-made clothes fare on the wearability test? Are you confident in your wearable sewing skills, or not?