The problem with becoming obsessed with sewing, it that it takes tiiiime. I’ve recently had a few nights where I’ve been at it until 1am, only noticing the time when I’ve ripped up the same seam 5 times and my boyfriend starts suggesting that ‘it might be time to go to bed….’.
It’s also pretty darn expensive. I’ll write another time about all the stuff I have…. erm… ‘had’ to to buy for my newfound hobby. I’m dreading adding up the numbers, but I think it would be interesting to see how much the essentials , and also how much all the ‘nice to have’ extras cost.
Earlier this week, I posted a photo of my Madeleine skirt on Facebook and got a few comments from friends along the lines of ‘can you make one for me’? I would absolutely love to make clothes for people – and to charge for it. But my potential customers would have to consider the following:
– Time: Making this skirt, including taking measurements, prepping the pattern, cutting it out, sewing, battling with buttonholes etc took me about 10-12 hours. Making second one would probably take quite a bit less, since I’ve done it once already and know how the pattern work, what the instructions say etc. My estimate would be about 8 hours, including a fitting. If I’d be so kind as to only charge the UK minimum wage (£6.31/hour), this would add up to £50.48.
– Materials: First you need to get the pattern, and the Madeleine skirt cost a very reasonable £7 (so worth it!). In terms of fabric, you can get away very cheaply in London. Head to Walthamstow market and you can easily find some for £2-5/m. But if you want to get nice fabric, and in this case suited to this particular garment, it’s probably worth spending a bit more. I actually only paid £7.7/m myself, but at 2.25m that adds up to £17.30. I was thinking about sewing it in wool fabric, but at £17/m I decided against it. Then come the buttons (£2) and the thread (£2)…
This all adds up to a grand total of £78.78.
I think, inevitably, people will just go and buy themselves a skirt when I tell them this.
Also, it’s worth pointing out (as my almost mother-in-law emailed to tell me) that when making clothes for people, you run the risk of ending up in a situation where the end product is not exactly what they were expecting, the finish isn’t as nice as a store bought version would be and so on. I definitely run the risk of this, being a beginner and all.
But if all of the above sounds good to you, please do come knocking on my door and I will happily make you a skirt :)
On another note… On my sewing table at the moment:
My Coco pattern arrived earlier this week and I’ve started assembling my bits and pieces so that I can start putting it together… Excited!