As someone who is usually short on time and always short on patience, I am a master of safety pin alterations. I’ve sewn myself into something more than once, used a glue gun to make a handbag, and embraced unfinished hems with unbridled enthusiasm. Although I enjoy the process of making, most of my handy work would never survive the wash. In a handful of embarrassing moments, it hasn’t survived the evening.
It wasn’t until I joined the ranks of Alabama Chanin and attended my first workshop that I actually made something that had the potential to last. I chose a DIY Swing Skirt in a beautiful shade of green, with our bloomers pattern stenciled just around the edges. I wielded a needle and thread to the best of my ability and actually managed to finish the skirt by the end of the day. Even though the front seam is a little crooked, it remains in heavy wardrobe rotation and has survived the wash many, many times.
The best part about wearing it: every time someone pays me a compliment or asks where I got it I can say “Thank you, I actually made it myself!” By the time my daughter Agnes is old enough, I will have sewn a closet full of beautiful skirts and dresses that can be passed on to her.
I recently started working on our DIY Rose Tank Dress and chose carmine for the fabric color to match her lovely red hair. Agnes just started walking, so I’ll be able to wear it for at least a decade before she begins raiding my closet. I hope that whenever the opportunity arises, she enjoys saying “Oh thank you, my mother actually made it for me!”