Posted on November 15 2020
Desmond and his completed masterpieces (even the shirt he’s wearing!) with Fashion Makerspace.
Starting on a new hobby or interest may be easy, but to continue the journey and also improve on the way is a different drive all together. We had a chance to interview Desmond (Thank you Desmond!) - one of our few male students who has been with us for a huge variety of sewing classes. We ask him on his thoughts on sewing and his inspirations.
How would you describe yourself?
Am quite "adventurous" & open minded when it comes to picking up new skills, constantly seeking new things to try. As a middle-aged guy, it is also important for me to pick up new hobbies, try new things and to keep my mind active in preparation for retirement!
What inspired you to first start making your own clothes?
I like prints and colours on clothes that makes me happy but men's shirts that are readily available in the market are often plain, striped or chequered. So I was thinking, why not I shop for fabric that I like and start making my own clothes?!
I had difficulty finding a place where I can learn how to make men's clothes until I came across the [Cut & Sew Designs] Menswear Bowling Shirt class offered by Fashion Makerspace. And one thing led to another, I decided to try my hands on the Mandarin Collar Menswear and the Long Sleeve Menswear.
Desmond’s work in progress with the Menswear Bowling Shirt.
What drives you to continue sewing?
The joy of wearing the shirts that I made, using the fabric that I really like is a big motivation. (You won't see another person wearing the same shirt on the street!) The teachers at Fashion Makerspace are really friendly, knowledgeable and encouraging. They provide physical guidance instead of online lesson which really makes a big difference for beginners like me.
Our Trainer Rachel teaching Desmond how to visualise where to sew.
The skills I picked up when sewing shirts also helped me to make accessories (bucket hat, tote bags, etc) on my own while watching Youtube videos. So the skills learnt at Fashion Makerspace are very versatile!
The bucket hat and tote bag made with the skills learnt at Fashion Makerspace!
What's your favourite part about sewing?
Sewing is like putting pieces of jigsaw puzzle together. It is quite amazing to see how the flat pieces of fabric come "alive" to become a shirt, bag or accessory. And the possibilities are endless. The joy of completing the things you have set out to make and using/wearing them is very satisfying.
Were there any difficulties you faced when you were learning to sew?
Collar! I still have difficulties sewing a perfect collar. And my mother (who is experienced) WARNED me that it is the hardest part of sewing a shirt before I started sewing and now, I truly understand what she meant by that. I wish there is an easier way, but practice makes perfect. Guess I will need to sew more clothes for myself!
What kind of garments do you wish to make in the future?
I would like to sew dresses for my nieces!
I also took up a lesson on drafting and sewing Casual Boxy Top for a colleague who has kindly volunteered to be my model. So, if there is anyone who does not mind becoming my model, I can venture into another drafting class and sew for you! (Just don’t set your expectations too high, am still a beginner!)
Any advice for those who wish to begin their sewing journey? (especially for gentlemen!)
Be patient and keep an open mind. It is important to give yourself a chance and try new things, a positive attitude not just towards sewing. Sewing (even hand sewing a button or school badge!!) is a basic life skill which I think everyone should pick up. And they say the best tailors/fashion designers are men, so why not use the opportunity to prove them right (:
Desmond hard at work with his next masterpiece.
Which classes have you taken with FMS and which are you planning to take?
Bowling Shirt (completed)
Mandarin Collar Shirt (completed)
Men’s Long Sleeve Shirt (completed)
Easy Drafting Casual Boxy Top (completed)
Men’s Bermuda (ongoing)
Easy Drafting Men’s Resort Wear (planning)
Thank you Desmond for being so participative in this feature! Look forward to more of such personal stories from the students themselves and be inspired by these talented Fashion Makers.