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sewing as a hobby

Heavy Duty Sewing Machine – Corset Making

heavy duty sewing machineAre you interested in making your own corsets – you might need a heavy duty sewing machine, depending on the material.

Corset wearing and making is something that has exploded in popularity. It’s partly thanks to the likes of the Kardashians, who have been pictured wearing them. (We wouldn’t recommend wearing one during a workout, however!) There’s also been a trend in certain figures – the super-curvy hourglass with an exaggerated hip to waist ratio, which most women don’t have.

Corsets can just look lovely for occasional wear, though. If you make your own, you get to create a customised product that will fit your dimensions. When you wear a corset, a made-to-measure version will be the most comfortable. And believe us, you want your corset to be comfortable…

Leather corsets can give you that cool steampunk look. You will definitely need a heavy duty sewing machine if you are going to work with leather, though.

Here are some tips for making your own corsets:

  • Use a basic pattern if you haven’t made one before, as corsets are complicated. A good design should be adjustable so you can fit it to your own measurements
  • Be honest when you are taking your measurements! We know this sounds silly, but precise measurements will give you the best results for your corset. A great pattern will suggest multiple places to measure. Good designs also allow about two inches at the back for lacing it up.
  • Corset Coutil is intended specifically for corsets. You need a sturdy fabric as corsets undergo a lot of tension. Leather is sometimes used too. Brocade is nice too, especially if your corset is going to be on show.
  • An underbust corset offers more comfort and is easier to make than an over bust corset.
  • Spiral steel flats are the best choice for the corset boning. If you plan to use your corset for waist training (i.e. reducing the size of your waist over a period of time), your corset needs to have about 16 bones.
  • You can use craft glue to tip the bones, so there are no rough edges.
  • You will need about five metres of lace for your corset. Cable cord is a good choice because the lacing needs to be sturdy.

There is lots of information about making your own corsets online. Check out these guides (WikiHow, Instructables) if you’d like to make your own. It’s a fun project to do, and you might find your skills in high demand if you can master the art!

Sewing4Everyone sells pre-used and refurbished sewing machines, including the heavy duty sewing machine. See our semi-industrial sewing machines here.

Why More and More People Want to Sew

vintage sewing machine

Craft fairs are more popular than ever.

Thinking about buying a vintage sewing machine? Why? Our shops are full of clothes, but more people than ever are choosing to sew at home.

Once upon a time, sewing was a skill that most girls were taught. Certainly, young women would be expected to sew in the home – from creating their own clothes and outfits for their family on a vintage sewing machine handed down from their mothers to making cushion covers, curtains and carrying out small mending jobs.

Then, there was an about-turn in the 70s and 80s, as sewing was regarded with suspicion because it seemed too gender-specific. Modern women didn’t want to learn to sew. They wanted to learn what men were being taught, or skills that seemed less ‘feminine’. Groups that had favoured and fostered traditional skills such as sewing and knitting (the Women’s Institute, for example) were thought of as the preserve of older women.

A New Hobby and A Vintage Sewing Machine

A cultural shift took place in the noughties. Sewing and knitting were ‘sexed’ up. Debbie Stoller’s Stich and B***h reinvented knitting for another generation, turning it into a fresh, new hobby. The Women’s Institute started to attract younger members, who wanted to make their own stuff.

Numerous celebrities were pictured knitting as they waited between takes while filming (knitting, unlike smoking, is a good thing to do with your hands), and shows such as Kirstie Allsopp’s Homemade Home came on the scene. Home-made was officially cool once more.

Other aspects that play into people’s desire to sew are sustainability and provenance. Yes, our shops are full of clothes, but where do they come from and who are they made by? Made in China and transported here? Modern consumers have more knowledge than ever at their fingertips. The new sewers know that if they can use a vintage sewing machine and create their own clothing, they will do far less damage to faraway communities and the environment.

Craft Fairs

If ever there was proof of the popularity of sewing and crafts in general, look at the number of fairs and events that take place across the UK every year. From cross-stitch to quilt-making, there are any number of shows taking place. In the next few months, for example, you can visit the Abingdon Vintage and Antiques Fair, the Sew and Beads Quilt and Craft Fair in West Sussex or the Handmaiden Craft Fair in Essex.

Social media has played its part too. Sites such as Instagram and Pinterest are ideal places to showcase your home-made clothes and terrific skills. It’s terrifically satisfying to put up a picture of something you have sewn yourself and receive numerous ‘likes’, pins or comments expressing admiration. There’s nothing like a little external validation to cheer us up.

We think even more people will choose sewing at home as a hobby in the future. The home-made trend isn’t going to go away.

We specialise in the sales of pre-owned, heavy-duty and vintage sewing machines for domestic and industrial use. Contact us on (01782) 943667 to discuss your requirements.

 

 

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