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Topic: Australian guy about to make his own clothes  (Read 1023 times)
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Utilitarian Sewing Guy
« on: April 03, 2014 07:45:10 PM »

I am a utilitarian kind of guy that wants to make a no-fuss good looking business casual wardrobe.

Dress shirts 10-14.
Dress pants 5-10.
Jackets 1-5.
Vests 1-5.
Outerwear 1-2.

What economical non-iron warm weather materials are appropriate for the above items?

Will a Singer 1408 sewing machine $154 AUD off ebay be sufficient for my needs?

Can any one recommend me a standard pattern for the above items?

Your advice may save me much time and money so I thank you. 

My guitar playing/building hobby has costed me $3500+ and I want to prevent a budget blowout with this new sewing hobby.
« Reply #1 on: April 03, 2014 08:06:52 PM »

I applaud your do-it-yourself attitude! 

That sewing machine would probably be fine for most clothing.  Is there Craigslist in Australia, or another free online classified service?  You might find a better price--I see one listed in a google search for $98 US.

Have you ever sewn before?  There is a learning curve.  I would suggest starting with something fairly simple, like a sports shirt, and see if you enjoy sewing or if you get all bolluxed up.

I would suggest a polyester/cotton blend for a shirt.  At least 50% cotton to keep it cool, the polyester makes it no-iron.  (BTW, if a garment looks a little rumpled, you can toss it in the dryer with a damp cloth for a few minutes to tumble out the wrinkles.)

Pants are a bit trickier to fit; if you turn out to be similar in shape to the pattern (or aren't too picky), you'll do fine.  Vests aren't too hard--use a great contrast lining for some excitement. 

Jackets and outerwear, on the other hand, are specialty items usually requiring tailoring skills.  I've been sewing for 50 years, but wouldn't take on a man's jacket unless I had to.  And then I would be cussing and moaning about what a pain it is.

Good luck!

"Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep." - Scott Adams
Utilitarian Sewing Guy
« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2014 03:16:05 AM »

I am pretty handy I made a pair of boxers when I was in high school but sewing was more interesting to my sister and late mother.

I think I could see myself making a pair of pajama pants.

Good idea with craigs list, that should save some money.

I can pick up one of these on the weekend but I am not sure which is the best deal.

$49 BROTHER Basic Sewing Machine

$95 SINGER 14U12A Overlocker Sewing Machine

$65 Juki 3 spool Overlocker Sewing Machine

Thanks a lot for the help, getting into a new hobby can be daunting.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2014 03:17:48 AM by Utilitarian Sewing Guy » THIS ROCKS   Logged
« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2014 01:56:34 PM »

I would go with a plain ol' sewing machine to start, rather than a serger/overlocker.  Sergers can be fiddly, lots more to go wrong than a sewing machine.  Later, if you start sewing a lot of knits, a serger might be great for you.

Pajama pants would be a great project.  Check patterns at your local sewing/fabric store--there's often a rack of extra-easy patterns that would include pajamas, robes, simple shirts. 

There are also big books of patterns to check out; the men's section is usually quite thin and near the back.  Simplicity and McCalls patterns and directions are usually pretty straightforward, I've had problems with Burda.  Of course some of those companies might have gone out of business, I usually make my own patterns these days and so don't check the books.

"Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep." - Scott Adams
Utilitarian Sewing Guy
« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2014 11:22:56 PM »

I picked up the Brother Basic Sewing machine for $49.  The fellow that sold it to me showed me all the features and how to set it up, it was great.
« Reply #5 on: April 05, 2014 05:33:06 AM »

Thrift stores can sometimes be a good place to find patterns cheaply.
And if the previous pattern owner is like me, they will have written notes into the instructions on how they had to adapt the patten. Smiley

« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2014 10:55:22 PM »

so, 'Stralian guy, didja make anything yet?

"Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep." - Scott Adams
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