Hello and welcome to the final post in this blog series! Now, this is not to say that I will be leaving the blog completely; however, I won't be posting quite as frequently anymore as for me, exam season is coming, so I'll be starting to revise for mock exams very soon.
Before then though, I wanted to look at one final craft, although it perhaps does not fit into the category of "less well-known." In fact, I would argue that sewing is one of the most popular crafts, but I wanted to look into it anyway as I (along with many others) got particularly into it last year by making face masks. Today, I'll be reviewing both hand and machine sewing.
What do you need?
With hand sewing, all you need are a needle, thread, pins, fabric scissors and your material, all of which we stock. With machine sewing, you also need your sewing machine (you can find many good sewing machines online or in sewing shops) along with the appropriate equipment for each part (e.g. bobbin, thread and sewing machine needle). Usually, a sewing machine will come with all the parts, instructions, and some threads, but it's likely that you will have to re-order some parts separately later if they break or run out.
Is it difficult?
Hand sewing is often taught in primary schools because it is quite an easy and repetitive craft. However, you are only taught a couple different types of stitch at first, so you can learn more stitches and make it more advanced as you go along. Also, whilst it is easy to learn the basics of hand sewing, it can be hard to master it and make you stitches even. However, many people like this as it means they have to focus on it, which can be very relaxing.
On the other hand, I didn't learn machine sewing until I started secondary school (though it was offered as an optional club for older students at my primary school) as it is a little harder and faster. Threading the machine up can also be difficult, though this depends on both the machine you have and the clarity of your instructions. Similarly to hand sewing, machine sewing is very versatile in the way that it can be used to make a variety of different things and can vary in difficulty depending on what you are trying to do.
Is it expensive?
Hand sewing is probably one of the cheapest crafts, as you can buy material relatively cheaply (or even upcycle clothes) and not a lot of extra equipment is needed. With machine sewing, buying the machine can be expensive but many people have sewing machines at home that have been passed down through the generations, so if you are one of those people, learning to sew on that would not be much more expensive than sewing by hand.
How did you learn?
So, as I mentioned earlier, I learnt the basics of both hand and machine sewing at school and also at home. However, recently, I learnt how to machine sew through online guides. When it comes to making the masks, the website I used was The Big Community Sew. I loved that this site had a range of both written instructions and video tutorials.
As for hand sewing, I recommend getting kits to learn how to make things such as small toys, as these often use clear, visual instructions and are quick and easy to make. We stock a range of small sewing kits here. Also, whilst we don't currently offer sewing lessons, there may be more classes available when lockdown restrictions end, so it may be a good idea to try one of those too.
Which is better, hand or machine sewing?
For me, this question is really hard to answer as it's down to personal preference; however, I think that I would have to say that my favourite is hand sewing. I like the fact that it's relatively slow and simple and I can pick a project up easily with little setup. It's nowhere near as loud as machine sewing either, which is a bonus!
However, I do love sewing with a machine as it's a lot more versatile and useful. With a sewing machine, you can make something very quickly too. So, if you prioritise speed and versatility, sewing by machine is probably better for you.
If you're not so sure which category you fall into, why not give both a try and see which you prefer?
Would I recommend sewing?
Without a shadow of a doubt, I would recommend sewing, as sewing is so versatile and varied that there is something for everyone, whether you are someone who wants a quick hobby or something slow and relaxing to wind down to. It's also such a useful skill - I'm sure we've all had buttons fall off our clothes and stitches coming loose before, so knowing how to sew can be very handy in those moments.
That's all from me for a little while, though I'll still be updating you all with current projects and what's going on at Avicraft Wool. If you want more updates from Sharon too, why not follow @avicraftwool on Instagram or Facebook?
Until next time, happy crafting!
My name is Sharon the Sheep, the owner of Avicraft Wool Shop in Bromley Kent..