Friday, April 12, 2013

Article about how sewing can save money

Well all knew this already, right? Here's a first person view of how to save money with sewing.

First Person: My Sewing Skills Saved Us at Least $150 Over the Last Year By Tammy Lee Morris (text below)

Knowing how to sew used to be a must for all young women but today, it seems to be a dying art. I learned to sew from my mother and grandmother when I was a little girl. While it was a fun hobby during childhood, it has become an essential skill that helps save my family money. Here are specific ways that I have saved money in the past year thanks to my sewing skills

Kitchen Valances

The valances hanging in my kitchen now were homemade a few months ago. I created the unique paint scheme in my kitchen then decided I wanted to make curtains that would complement the colors. After choosing the perfect fabric, I measured and cut then sewed and I was quite pleased with the finished product. They look great in my kitchen and are exactly what I wanted for a fraction of the cost of store-bought valances.

I spent a total of about $10 on the fabric and each valance would have cost at least $10 each at a local store. I sewed four valances so the total cost savings was $30.

Rag Dolls

For Christmas this past year, I decided to make homemade cloth dolls for my newborn daughter and my 16-month-old niece. To buy comparable dolls, it would have cost between $10 and $20 for each doll. I used supplies and materials I already had on hand and the finished products were adorable. The total cost savings was between $20 and $40.

Diaper Covers

After my daughter was born, I chose to use cloth diapers in an effort to save money. Store-bought, commercially-made diapers covers cost $22 each (including a lining pad) at a local store. Instead, I purchased waterproof fabric and liner fabric as well as hook and loop closures, elastic and a diaper cover pattern at a local fabric and craft store. The total cost of the fabric, notions and pattern was about $30 but the amount of materials I bought will make at least six diaper covers. If I bought those at a local store, the investment would be $132 but my investment was $30 -- a savings of $102. That savings doesn't include the money I will continue to save on diapers.

Cloth Napkins

In order to save money, we use cloth napkins instead of disposable paper napkins. To buy cloth napkins at a local store, the cost is $2 for two napkins, or $1 apiece. I was able to use scrap materials that had been given to me to sew cloth napkins myself. For one dozen napkins, I saved $12 and that doesn't include the savings from not buying disposable napkins.

Saving Money

Being able to sew has allowed me to create a number of items that would otherwise cost me a lot of money. I have made curtains, blankets, throw quilts, dolls, stuffed animals, clothing and more. Because I can sew, I have been able to find cheap items at thrift stores, mend and alter them and repurpose them to suit my tastes or the tastes of those in my family.

While many people would see a one-dollar winter coat that has a tear or a ripped seam as not worth buying, to me that's a bargain. I can mend that easily and have an excellent-condition coat for a member of my family. An item of clothing that is too large, too short, or damaged is still a great bargain if the price is right as I can fix it up.

Simple sewing skills are valuable to know because not only is it a fun hobby, but it is a money-saving skill.

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