RED Hearts: The Many Benefits Of Sewing

RED Hearts are guests posts on I Heart Daily from the authors of RED: Teenage Girls in America Write On What Fires Up Their Lives Today. Today's RED Hearts post is byDani Cox, 16, reporting from Pleasanton, California, who has learned the wonders of sewing her own clothes:

The world of fashion can be a beautiful place -- a sort of dreamland for those who appreciate what a piece of fabric can accomplish in life. Yet for a struggling student with very limited income, the price of designer clothes can be a bit drastic. Solution? Make it yourself!

Armed with this brilliant plan, you can go to Jo-Ann’s online shop or a store near you and start hunting for your favorite fabrics and everything else to do Project Runway your way. Pattern for sweet soaring-temperature sundress: $5.95. Watermelon print fabric: $7.49. Pink fabric: $7.49. Pink polka-dot buttons: $3.99. Quarter-inch-wide elastic band: $1.29 (or Zipper: $1.79). Total: under $30. Plus you know the only sweatshop labor that went into the manufacture is your own.

OK, so labor. This dressmaking business does require a little sewing skill. But you’ll pick it up quickly (I did), and many of the stores offer classes, often free, on how to connect with your inner fashionista.

Think of it: You can say goodbye to sleeves that are slightly too long or too short, that extra fabric bunch around your hips or awkward bumps at estimated shoulders that just aren’t yours. You can even skip the shopping trip and the dressing room! So before spending those crisp bills on a wannabe designer outfit, consider investing in your own creations. Start with a simple sundress, and by back-to-school time you’ll be modeling a whole wardrobe of walking pieces of art, all made in the name (without the cost) of fashion!

RED Hearts guest poster Dani Coxis an author of RED: Teenage girls in America write on what fires up their lives today, which is now available in paperback.