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My Work – Adventures in Handmade Fashion

If you have read some of my articles you probably already know that I am not a Barbie lookalike. I was blessed with a good height, or lack thereof, nice hips (they came handy in childbirth), and enough other physical attributes to make it almost impossible for me to find ready-made clothes that fit. Stylish clothes that fit were clearly an impossible possibility! And since I am not a pop star, nor an acclaimed model, custom tailoring was never an option.

Embellish and personalize clothes and shoes

This is me: About me (ageberry.com)

What to do, what to do? Well, simple: when life gives you lemons, make lemonade! Case in point: get a sewing machine and sew! I have sewed so many outfits that in the end I had a dilemma: either I start liking to sew, or see it as a chore. Since I had to sew, I needed clothes, I chose to like it 🙂! And here I am.

Below is a  collection of outfits that I created over time, in no particular order. Some of them don’t fit anymore, some I modified and transformed, some are so worn already that I had to repurpose the material. Some of them I donated to charity, and some of them I still have and I alter from time to time to fit my changing body.

I am presenting mostly garments that I have not written about on the site; I did write about some, and not all are in this gallery. I chose to present mostly images of outfits that I did not describe because the ones for which I do have tutorials (and patterns) can easily be found on my site SEWING PROJECTS (ageberry.com) and for most of them I also have either a pattern, or I describe how to draw a pattern for your own measurements.

What did I use for most of the garments below: I used commercial patterns, most of the time modified to fit me. I also used ideas from ready made clothes, then combined pieces of commercial patterns and modified them to adjust them to my measurements and style. I can not say that I have a clear modus operandi; I do whatever comes naturally, and whatever seems to be the right thing to do at that time.


Dresses I always make myself. I have presented a number of them already, and there are others on the site. Here are some of the dresses that I made and I probably did not show (yet) in a tutorial.

I live in Florida. It would be unnatural for me not to make some light outfits that you could wear when going out for a stroll, to the beach or simply when enjoying a nice sunset.

Let’s see about work clothes. I had more fun making them than wearing them! These could easily double as home outfits, unpretentious, easy to wear and comfortable.

I can make (and I did) more serious outfits, suitable for work, or PTA meeting. Because believe me, with 3 kids, I had a LOT of parent/teacher meetings!

But all work and no play, that is no fun! So here are my “fun” outfits, or at least some of them.

Cold weather clothes? You bet! Coats (and dresses) were in fact the most difficult to find ready made since they dress your whole body.

In time, I made some very nice party outfits too!

Pants? Tights? Shorts? I made them; my hips, you know… And I see no reason why I should not be comfortable!

I made mistakes too; these outfits do not fit my body at all! The gathered dress and the jeans skirt do nothing but emphasize stuff I would rather not show. I wrote about how to use clothes to hide stuff you want to hide and to emphasize stuff you want to show here How to dress well: flattering clothes that hide figure flaws and here How To Choose Flattering Clothes For A Big Stomach. In fact the articles were born as a direct result of these mistakes!

I can’t forget a wedding dress I made so many years ago that I really, really don’t even want to remember. But I think about dress fondly, even if I am sure it no longer fits!

Many of my outfits are two piece; I always make the skirt, and most of the time I made the blouse also. But not always, blouses are easier to buy than skirts.

And finally, let me end this list with some things that are difficult to place in any category, but which I like nevertheless.

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