Clothing Sewing Decision Process

Ask yourself these questions to help you manage your sewing decision-making process. This will help you plan and sew clothes thoughtfully.

Usually, the techniques used to sew clothes are not that difficult to master. It's much harder to make clothes you'll wear and clothes that fit your body today. These are the questions I ask myself before I sew, while I sew, and after I sew to help me in my sewing decision process.

As I was writing this article, I thought it was important to note that some of these questions would be good questions to ask when sewing a gift for someone, even if it's not clothing. Maybe you won't ask about the fitting, but you can think about how the person will use the item, what colors they like, and how often it should be washed.

Sewing decision process

Before you start sewing

If you often do things you don't like after you're done, here are the questions to ask. I ask these questions when I simply intend to point myself in the right direction. Sometimes I haven't even purchased the pattern or fabric when I start this phase.

If you need help planning your wardrobe, you can read how to sew clothes you'll love and use my free handmade wardrobe planner.

fabric shirt

Questions to Ask About Style

It may be easy for you to find your style, but I had to really work at it to find mine. I used Wardrobe Architectand it helped me move in the right direction.

There is also a question below about sewing a trend. It's not a problem if you like to sew trends, but it's really good to analyze whether you like it because you like it or if you like it because everyone else likes it.

  • Does the style fit your lifestyle? Can you make sophisticated things work in your casual lifestyle? Can you incorporate casual things into your sophisticated lifestyle?
  • Is this a silhouette you like to wear? Does this look like you when you wear it?
  • Are you doing it because it's the latest trend?

Questions to ask about the sewing pattern

  • Will a large or small print work well with the style lines of the pattern? Does a solid still work better?
  • Is it a color or colorway that you like to wear?
  • Will it coordinate with items already in your wardrobe?
  • Will the silhouette work with the silhouettes in your wardrobe?
  • How many details does the pattern have? How many seams are there and where are they located?
  • Am I doing it because it’s the shiny new pattern and everyone is sewing it?
chambray fabric

Questions to Ask About Fabric

These are my favorite places to buy fabric and the questions below will help you choose.

  • What is the fabric made of?
  • What is the width of the fabric? Do you need additional meters?
  • How elastic is the fabric?
  • Does it feel good on your skin?
  • Is the fabric durable enough to withstand the stress of wearing the pattern?
  • Does the pattern need drape or body?
  • Is this fabric difficult to work with?
  • Should you match the stripes, print or nap?

Questions to ask during the sewing process

These are the questions I ask myself after planning and purchasing, but before I start sewing or start sewing.

Foot and bobbin for Bernina sewing machine

Should I sew a muslin?

  • Have you sewn this pattern before?
  • Have any of your measurements changed since the last time you sewed it? When was the last time you measured yourself?
  • Have you ever sewn something from this patternmaker to get a feel for how your body works with its block?
  • Is it loose or fitted?
turn inside out and press the seams

It's always better to take the time to repair something during the sewing process than to not wear it later. Or have to repair it once finished!

Heather Paulsen – Handmade Heather

Questions to ask when trying out during the process

I love trying on the garment while I sew it. This helps me check the fit and placement of details, and I can change it before it becomes too difficult.

  • Does the adjustment work as you want?
  • Do you like how it feels?
  • Is it too tight or too loose?
  • Is this the right length?
  • Are the details in the right place?
  • Do you need to modify a detail?
sewing with seam ripper

Questions to ask after you finish sewing

It's always good to think about a garment after it has been sewn and whether it is worn or not.

Questions to analyze after several months

  • Do I wear it regularly?
  • Does it hold up to washing and wearing?
  • Do I have anything to wear with it?
  • If I don't wear it, what is the reason? Is it the color, the fabric, the cut or the style? Are there several?
  • What should I change next time?
quilted cotton fabric

If you learn more about the sewing decision process, I'd love to hear about it! Please share it on social media with the hashtag #heatherhandmade and identify me!

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