A practical need for sewing


I have a pile of sewing to do.  Not ‘fun’ sewing like cute dresses or kimonos or sashiko-style mending  but the practical kind.  I mean things like sewing on Cub Scout badges, fixing holes in the kids uniform, hemming my pants and sewing my hubby’s swimming badges onto his sweatshirt (don’t ask!)

This is the kind of sewing that I shove on a pile and leave for a rainy day, which in Sydney isn’t that often. It’s not creative (like visible mending, my favourite mending of all time!) that’s why I don’t enjoy it but I think it’s time to change my attitude.  Sewing is a practical skill and not only should we enjoy it for the loveliness it brings but we should also sew for a practical need.

Many years ago, while try to survive my life as a new Mum, I remember reading Buddhism for Mothers.  I didn’t get that far into it, read the first few chapters and got the basic idea.  Not because I didn’t enjoy it, mainly because I was too tired to read for about 5 years.  But what stuck with me was the being ‘in the moment’ with the housework and chores and not taking them on with a ‘get through it’ attitude.  Yes, I can see that, it’s hard to do but it’s worth a try and I often think about this when I am folding 12 tons of washing.

So I am going to apply this ‘in the moment’ idea to my practical sewing and enjoy every stitch of adding the Scout ‘fishing badge’, so proudly earned, to my sons shirt and the WWW (that’s Winter Without Wetsuit) badge to my husbands sweater!

It also means I need to make a few ‘boring’ items for me and the kids.  I need some pyjama pants and Bertie needs some trousers.  I yawned at the idea.  But then I really surprised myself by how much I enjoyed the process.  They were quick, a quick sew has been few and far between of late.

The first ‘practical’ item was my pyjama pants.  I used the Tilly & The Buttons, Margot Pyjama pants pattern from her book, Love At First Stitch.  This is the first pattern I have used from this book. Super easy and super quick.  I cut a size 4, they are comfy and loose.  I made the process easier by adding elastic to the waistband instead of a drawstring, which in my opinion is ‘faff’.

The fabric I used was a charity shop find, bought about 6 months ago.  I had about 2.5m, luckily, as it was not very wide.  It’s a cotton mix paisley number, cost all of about $3.

Shockingly unflattering, making short legs shorter, but does it really matter?
Lets not even discuss pattern placement here!!

The second ‘practical’ item was a pair of trousers for Bertie.  He is growing at an alarming rate (god knows how as he eats like a sparrow) and having already made two pairs of Mini Hudson Pants in the last month, something else was called for.

I made Parsley Pants by Made by Rae.  I am no stranger to this pattern, I have made it many times over, I even wrote a post about my love for them here.  It’s super easy and with only two pieces (the front & back are one piece), it’s a doddle to cut and sew.  I thought I might add some pouch pockets as he always needs somewhere to stuff his lego minifigures or his cars.

He’s almost out of this sweatshirt I made him, I wrote a post about one very similar here.


My child, the shoe refuser!

The fabric I used was another charity shop find, I bought it last week.  It’s a yummy, thick, olive green cord.  It cost $4.  It is a fairly thick fabric with a little stretch. I was originally going to add knee patches but the thickness was just too much.  The pockets are a little clunky. I changed the direction of the cord on the pockets, if we are going to see them, then lets see them, I say!  I lined them with some green duck cloth scraps left over from a previous make.


I am thrilled to have spent only $7 to get two fantastic pairs of pants. Both pairs are cosy, both pairs are comfy and both pairs are necessary and dare I say, they are both ‘practical’!  OK, procrastination over, pass me those Scout badges someone….Hooray for practical sewing.

8 thoughts

  1. Ugh, practical sewing. I know they can be cute like yours, but I must admit that I’d still rather sew frosting than cake. I find it very hard to motivate myself even with the cost savings in mind. I just don’t have the time to invest in all the cake. Loving both your pants though 🙂


  2. Oh I love this post! I am all about getting ‘in the moment’ with chores. I have years behind me of chore avoidance which is no good with kids, so have adopted a new approach and kind of see the enjoyment in household tasks and the cleaner state of mind it brings me. Mending and practical clothes are boring, but such a good feeling when finished! Just like tidying toys and making the floor clear for the hoover. I have even started in the garden! My fingers are far from green, but a bit done here and there and I now have plants! What’s happening to me???


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