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Adventures in hand sewing: Natalie ‘Alabama’ Chanin

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I’ve always enjoyed creating with my hands and a few primitive tools. No electricity required. The simple act of ‘doing’ without to many other gadgets to aid me has always ranked high in my crafting appeal. As much as I enjoy sewing, I know one of the reasons I have not done as much is because I really have not want to be on my sewing machine. Having a portable project that I can carry about? Yes, please! Being stuck to my crafting room to sew? Ehh… not so much!

Recently, I discovered Natalie ‘Alabama’ Chanin and was impressed by her couture line? Why? All the items are hand-sewn! That instantly caught my attention. A huge pull, for me at least, was the fact that she incorporated quilting stitches into her garment line.

Here are a few other reasons…

  1. I love hand sewing
  2. The extra details that go into making these pieces are amazing
  3. Everything is created here in the USA
  4. She pays her employees a living wage
  5. She dislikes being wasteful… just like me

After much deliberation, I choose the following book, Alabama Studio Sewing + Design: A Guide to Hand-Sewing an Alabama Chanin Wardrobe

Alabama Studio Sewing + Design: A Guide to Hand-Sewing an Alabama Chanin Wardrobe

Alabama Studio Sewing + Design: A Guide to Hand-Sewing an Alabama Chanin Wardrobe

It was the book that was recommended by one site that I follow as your first purchase. It arrived a few days ago, and I’m really enjoying immersing myself into all things hand-sewn. It’s my favorite type of sewing, after all… and it feels like I’m “at home,” when I read through this book. I believe, the first project will be the tee-shirt, since the weather is getting cooler, I do believe I’ll make it long sleeve. Since I’m still working on the knitted cape, its highly doubtful that I’ll be starting this within the next few weeks, but afterwards… it’ll be added to my “works in progress.”

I do believe, Natalie Chanin would be thrilled that I’m using old tee-shirts, made from cotton jersey, to create this project. This falls nicely into the “waste not” category, don’t you think?

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