QOTD 3/10 Do people ask you to sew?

mary_c_gwMarch 10, 2011

Just because you have a sewing machine?

Friends know I sew, as do many neighbors. I am often asked to do alterations or to hem slacks - and oh, yes, they will PAY me $5 per pair of lined slacks. Well, color me saying "yippee", LOL.

I hate doing alterations, so I refuse that outright. One neighbor wanted me to alter her daughter's 8-gore prom dress bodice for $15 - NO! The tailor at the mall charged her $85 - no wonder she wanted me to do the job!

I also finally cut off my friend - She's short, and she falls in love with pants too long for her. I finally told her (in a nice way, really!) buy your pants to fit or get them altered at the store. She shops Nordstrom's and Neiman Marcus with personal shoppers, and if she can do that she can pay for alterations.

I guess my problem is that people already know I can sew more than just quilts - oh! the costumes I made for my son's school! I always donated them to the school after my son was done with them. He's now 24, but some of those costumes are still being used. Everyone remembers...it's kind of scary, LOL.

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ya got that right! "Well, color me saying "yippee", LOL."

I decided years ago to NOT sew for people, NOT hem pants for people, and NOT do alterations for people! The only exceptions are family - namely my sons and my parents. For those of you that haven't had the privilege.....doing alterations are never worth the money you are paid - NEVER! So for now, because I still work full time, the pat answer is "Oh....I'm so sorry but I do not have time to hem pants/take up a skirt hem/repair a torn/ or whatever." End of conversation.


    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 9:00PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I just say "I don't do clothes" and I am not lying, I don't! I am a quilter! My mother was a master at alterations and did tons.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 9:42PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"Do people ask you to sew?" yes - I say "NO!"
Someone than had the nerve to ask to borrow my machine - I said "Absolutely NO!"
People just don't get it..

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 9:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I even have had people ask me to repair a leather purse.

I have done hems for people in the past but now just tell them that the tailor shop at the mall can get it done faster.

My daughter needed her formal dress shortened and I took it to the mall. It cost over 100.00 but it was done right. The skirt had vertical shirring and I wasn't comfortable doing it.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 10:20PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

My legacy in the school district is that I can make any costume and make it look like a professional job. And since I donated all that I made for my son once he out-grew them, well, they think I enjoy it.

Please, just give me a few fat quarters - they don't squirm when you stab a pin in them. They don't claim the batting you use is "ITCHY", they don't whine "I wanted to be Leonardo, NOT Donatello!!"

Fat quarters and yardage - oh, so soothing. They never complain. They don't gain or lose 10 pounds between fittings. They are mellow. They like what you like. They cooperate and nestle their bits into whatever block you make.

I'll never be anything but a quilter, ever again!

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 10:22PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I must look scary because I don't think I've ever been approached by anyone more distant than in-laws. I used to tailor my sweet MIL's clothing because she had preferences as to material and was very difficult to fit. I'd much rather fit a dress to someone starting from scratch, than try to alter it to fit. One good measuring session and I had it spot on and aside from details like collars and sleeves, she always stuck to one particular style.

I've done lots of clothes sewing for my kids, g'kids, foster kids, parents, spouses and other relatives, but most of them have been my idea and gifts. I had one dear friend ask me to make her a quilt and it still makes me shiver. I think it has more to do with an obligation hanging over my head than anything else.

Spouses, now that's a different story. They think just because you have a machine you can fix anything from internal collar stays to heavy metal zippers. And two of my spouses wore uniforms. (hey I only marry one at a time, relax, LOL) I got sane finally and told them dry cleaners do alterations and repairs. If they aren't willing to take the item in themselves, it gets ripped up and used as rug fodder.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 10:56PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

All the time. You do it once and they think they own you. Just tonight I was asked to fix a ripped seam and replace a hook closure on a pair of pants. One of these days I'm finally going to get up the nerve to say "Hubby, you need to learn to sew!"


    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 10:59PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Only on occasion and it is usaually someone I can't say no to. Pay????What is that? I am suppost to enjoy ripping out old zippers and replacing them or shortening 8 pair of pants that are 4"s too long ( tapered). "My favorite jeans need a new zipper, you can fix it can't you?". Or the granddaughter that knows you will make her wedding dress and ofcouse while you are at it can you do something for the flower girl? etc. etc.
Yes people ask and most of the time I say yes but sometimes I just say I just not that good....Jayne

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 11:24PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thank goodness only my 80 year old Mom and my sweet SIL asks me to alter or repair something for them. Usually I do it because it is usually only a quick shorten the legs or sleeves for Mom and a button or small tear in a shirt for SIL...who can say no to that? BUT I will not let it escalate into full alterations. NO WAY. I had a couple of cousins ask me to make something for them, I offered to teach them to sew so they could do it themselves because I didn't do that kind of sewing and pretty much that was the end of that! LOL

    Bookmark   March 11, 2011 at 5:06AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Only a few times, and I was happy to do it because they were close friends. I currently have friend who is very overweight and she is working really hard to loose the weight. Since money is very tight with her (and to help encourage the weight loss), I told her I'd alter her pants as she shrunk! (luckily, most are elastic waist pants)

My son (turning 10 in a few days) thinks I can sew any costume whether it is for him or one of his Transformer figures. He usually has moved on to a new project by the time we actually get around to creating something (thank goodness!!).

My daughter (age 8) is wanting a new purse. Now that I can handle!

    Bookmark   March 11, 2011 at 8:09AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

tuppermom~LOL~the person who asked to use my machine, wanted to "fix" a heavy leather computer bag!

I should say that I sewed uniforms for groups-cheerleader/ pom-pom girls- the Mothers were worse than the girls! Then I sewed bridal/prom occasionally - because I hated - hated sewing for people. DH finally learned that he had to go to the tailor for his alterations. Easier on the marriage because the tailor got it done!
Now, my son's dog chewed part of his sofa cushion, and I have been begging him to let me repair it & he doesn't want me to. I trained him to well I suppose :).
If I offer ~ let me do it!

    Bookmark   March 11, 2011 at 10:51AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I think that most non sewers think quilting and sewing clothes are the same skill set!
I'm short and I always have to hem my pants. I also hem my granddaughters, and some of DH's. I have always made Halloween costumes for the DGD's and matching ones for the American dolls lol!!! I enjoyed the costumes. I do not sew for anyone else and I have been asked numerous times. I just say that the only thing I sew are quilt tops. I would like to learn to do alterations for me.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2011 at 12:28PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'm hopeless with clothes. I couldn't set in a sleeve or put in a zipper if world peace depended on it. That's my story and I'm sticking to it! ;~))

    Bookmark   March 11, 2011 at 2:38PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

When my three kids were little I made all their Halloween costumes. I made most of my daughters dresses. One year I made all the costumes for her school play, there were about 30 of them.I make most if not all my drapes and curtains BUT I will not do alterations.
My standard answer is I'm too busy to give it the time and attention is deserves.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2011 at 2:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Good answer Carol! Mind if I steal or answer???

    Bookmark   March 11, 2011 at 3:20PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Go ahead.......magothyrivergirl. I'd be honored!

    Bookmark   March 11, 2011 at 6:04PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
March 2015 Quilting/Sewing Goals
Our March came in like a lamb. How about where you...
Freddie Fox
I've been working on various works in progress, sandwiching...
My Mom's cross-stitch bookmark
I took a brief break from quilting the last 2 weeks...
2015 Lotto Blocks
Finished Feb. Lotto block and want to get started on...
The Zelda Quilt-Along
We launched Zelda: The Quilt-Along on my blog yesterday....
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™