My Biggest Sewing Bloopers

May 10, 2012 in General, Tips & Tricks

When you’re first learning to sew, usually a lot of mistakes are made (and for a lot of people your patience level through it all often determines whether you’ll continue sewing)…although, they still occur throughout the career of a seamstress, I’m sure, like sewing something on the wrong way, etc. Somehow, many projects bring new challenges anyway. Whether it’s a new fabric or the same one you’ve worked on for awhile; it’s just a new style or design that’s different. Patterns can also throw you off sometimes too. I must admit my mistakes launched me forward and taught me lessons…here are just a few of my bloopers. Hopefully, some of my mistakes can help you! Do you have any? Please share in the comments section!

1. The first time I made a garment on my own was my prom dress for junior year despite my mom’s recommendations to learn more about sewing first. So, we get the pattern, buy the fabric, and cut it out. I, then, realized we had way too much yardage left over…we had gone with the 45″ fabric measurement on the pattern envelope as opposed to the 60″ …whoops, we could have saved so much money not buying all of that extra satin!! Sorry, the quality of the picture below is sub-par, it was the best picture I could find of it (I think my photo albums are still at my parents house since I got married 2.5 years ago; I should probably obtain those). This was 2003, wow, almost, 10 years ago…high school doesn’t feel that long ago!

2. I didn’t realize that “naps” made a really big difference when sewn opposite of each other until I was making a pencil skirt out of corduroy in a beginning college fashion class and had cut a piece out “upside down” and sewn it together. I kept looking at it and trying to figure out why the lighting was hitting it so differently…then I realized that I had cut the fabric out incorrectly and learned that corduroy does indeed have a nap! Good thing I had extra fabric in that situation! 🙂

3. Fashion school was somewhat stressful…so much work, so little time!! I was sewing a dress that I liked to call my “tuxedo dress” as you can tell why below. It was due the next day…and I promise, I hadn’t been slacking, in fact, whatever time I could find to work on it, I did. We truly didn’t have enough time for what we needed to do. So, I was sewing and serging and serging and sewing. Apparently, during one bout of intense serging, some of the fabric that was not supposed to hit the blade, did…luckily, I caught it early, but, when I clipped it out of the machine as carefully as I could and there was a v-shaped cut in the middle of one of my skirt panels, I fell over and cried for a brief minute…I felt like screaming! But, I realized quickly that time was of the essence and there was no way I had time to replace that panel let alone cry, so, I stitched it up with the same color thread and hoped it remained unnoticed…and it did! 🙂 It rocked on the runway! This lovely picture below is of the dress in our fashion show 2007! Image taken and kindly provided by Kastler Photography. For more information on Kastler Photography, visit; Kastler Photography serves the St. Louis and Houston metropolitan areas!

4. This one was in fashion school also…again, so much to do, so little time…I only stitched one gathering stitch as opposed to two (to save time) in a very full gathered evening gown skirt to save time. Well, that backfired and ended up taking more time…the thread broke half way losing a great portion of the gathers…grr, more time wasted! Funny now, not so much then! Moral of the story: whenever you have to gather a long portion of a skirt, stitch two gathering lines! My friend, Jenna, took this beautiful picture;

5. I made my sister’s prom dress for her senior year prom (this was 2 years later than my junior year prom dress in #1). We both worked on the beading portion (as it takes FOREVER to bead and is so redundant)! It was all ready to go a week before prom and we thought maybe we should have it dry cleaned, since, it being home-made, had been handled a lot. Well, first of all, the dry cleaning made the many layers of tulle in the skirt, including the stiff stuff, soft. So, the skirt wasn’t quite as full as intended, but, it wasn’t too bad. What was worse was one type of bead on the entire bodice and skirt melted, some completely gone! When I got home to my sister crying because of this…3 days before prom…we opened up the bodice, her on one side and me on the other. We beaded throughout and met in the middle…it was a nightmare, but, we finished it! Needless to say, plastic beads don’t fair well against dry cleaning, even if they look really pretty! (First picture: prom queen 2005; Second picture: She was able to wear it to a college formal too)!

I’m sure there are more, but, I’m certainly glad that most of those learning bloopers have already been experienced and I get to do more sewing than fixing mistakes! Live and learn! 🙂



2 responses to My Biggest Sewing Bloopers

  1. Tori said on May 11, 2012

    I have to confess…the first dress I made for myself was a DISASTER. I think I tried to put in the zipper 4 times before I got it to go in properly. Then, when I was done I discovered that I put in one of the pockets in backwards. The good news is, most sewing mistakes can either be fixed or covered up!

    • he he, thanks for sharing!! So true about the being able to be fixed or covered up! 🙂

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