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Women's clothes... buy it for life? What are your favourites?

 
gardener
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Many versions on this same theme - this is one of the less (musically & linguistically) obnoxious ones, lol: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=nDx-UoQGCZw
 
gardener
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Catie George wrote:i could see it making sense, but not, personally, now.

My biggest issue is time! Sewing is not hard, but it is fiddly, and quite time consuming to do well (especially when taught by a perfectionist who does everything the '9right' way).

My last project took about 5 days of my Christmas break. Project before that 10 hrs and never finished. One before that (easy circle skirt) 2 weekends + 5 evenings.  Yes, you can save time by reusing patterns and buying the fabric and notions for multiple at once, but it's still a lot! I don't have 15 extra hours in a month to use for sewing at this point in my life.  



I think the main problem with many people is the time spent making something that ultimately they won't wear. Ask me how I k ow that! One needs to plan carefully, don't cut corners and choose a pattern and fabric that suit and is simple.
Maybe I will start a personal journey thread once I start seeing in the fall. I really think this is a skill worth reviving from a frugality and survivalist point of view.
 
gardener
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I have been disappointed by women's carhartts. The elastic seems to cut the life in half, plus they don't reinforce the top of the thigh and knee the way the men's carhartt's are reinforced. If you happen to find a very heavy women's cut carhartts, they might be worth a try.

I wear a lot of men's carhartt's, both light and heavy canvas. Ernie shreds them faster than I do. One surprising long wearing pair of pants for Ernie has been a pair of lighter weight, American-made, hemp fiber trousers.

My mother's go-to work and winter casual pants are flannel lined jeans from LL Bean. They are a good durable option. I don't love the heaviness; or how they feel when damp. I think I work in damp brush more than she does, she is more into smaller scale gardening and on-trail hiking.

I am also a big fan of thrift store and army surplus shopping for 100% wool, linen, cotton, hemp, or silk clothing, second hand. If you can tolerate odd colors or Grandpa fashions, you can sometimes find very durable stuff that way.  One long time favorite was olive wool Army pants with button pegged legs, the best for cycling in rain and misty weather.

 
pollinator
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Erica Wisner wrote:One long time favorite was olive wool Army pants with button pegged legs, the best for cycling in rain and misty weather.


What a dream. I have a pair of old paratrooper pants in heavy cotton duck (the kind that look like they have a bike seat stitched in the crotch, looks uncomfy but quite the contrary) and another pair of HEAVY wool dress pants (too heavy for actual activities, like thick felt, not sure what they were for... deployments to Siberia?) that I got in an army-navy in NYC many, many years ago. Best purchases ever!

My love of Carhartts only extends to the men's pants, to be honest I've never seen the women's but I can believe that they would be substandard, sadly.
 
master steward
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I just remembered another place to look: Online consignment stores! When I was pregnant, it was really hard to find maternity shirts, let alone ones I liked. So I looked at online consignment stores. Prices were often thrift-store prices for the things I was looking at $3-6 per shirt. Sure, you can't try them on or feel the material, but they do tell you what fibres the clothes are made of, so you can search for linen or wool or cotton and click on ones that look decent and see if there's anything else in them other than cotton/linen/wool/etc.

It's actually kind of addictive, because you can just keep scrolling for what seems like an eternity, seeing more and more stuff. And, since the things a lot of us are looking for are usually not what most people are looking for, the prices often seem to be marked down.

Here's the one I'd bought my maternity shirts from, and now I'm scrolling endlessly through linen shorts and wool pants : https://www.swap.com/

Oooh, I just remembered I can organize the search results by price. $6 for brown 100% wool pants! Eeep!
 
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Nicole Alderman wrote:I
Oooh, I just remembered I can organize the search results by price. $6 for brown 100% wool pants! Eeep!



Ah! I had a favorite heavy wool pair.  In fact, I still might.  I know I no longer fit into them, but if I find them I will post them here for a giveaway.  It's hard to just let them go out the door if they won't be appreciated.  Treasures!
 
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I am a big sewist and have learned a few tricks over the years to make my sewing more efficient.  These tips may not work for everyone but they work for me.

Buying fabric, pattern, notions, driving, etc  = I buy notions in bulk from Wawak and patterns when they are on sale.  I check the pattern sales online and go to the stores with my list ready. Fabric online. So 4 hours per year total, .04 hours/week

Cutting out pattern = If I need to trace and add seam allowances this could be 1 hour, it could be 2 hours if I have to assemble the PDF print- at-home pattern.  With regular patterns, probably .5 hour

alter pattern = .33 hours as I have learned my needed alterations and have all rulers, curves, etc.

prewash + iron fabric = All fabric is washed upon entering the house, or sent to the dry cleaner if it is that sort.  It gets processed in bulk, so each individual fabric takes .1 to wash.  Ironing? I have an iron press and I also have the big board Big Board so even a large garment probably takes .5 hours

layout and cut pattern, transfer pattern markings, etc = I use generally simple shapes and employ pattern weights instead of pins.  I also use an elevated, extended cutting table with grid mats.  I use snips to mark almost all markings. .25 hours

Sew long seams and iron flat= .5 hours

Sew fiddly bits (plackets, waistband, press and sew darts, pleats, etc)= I try to avoid fiddly bits but if I do have to use them, .5 hours

Install notions,  buttons, clasps, zippers, etc, = Again, with my clothing style there are not many of these.  Maybe elastic, with elastic puller: .1 hour.

2.28 hours for a regular garment if I am doing the math correctly.
Hope these tips help someone.




Catie George wrote:
From my experience:
Buying fabric, pattern, notions, driving, etc  =1.5 hrs.
Cutting out pattern = 1 hr (read instructions, mark cutting lines, cut, iron pattern pieces).
alter pattern =0.5-2 hrs.
prewash + iron fabric = 1.5 hrs.
layout and cut pattern, transfer pattern markings, etc = 1-2 hrs.
Sew long seams and iron flat=1.5 hr.
Sew fiddly bits (plackets, waistband, press and sew darts, pleats, etc)=2 -4hrs.
Install notions,  buttons, clasps, zippers, etc, = 1-2 hrs.

So about  10 hrs to 15.5 hrs, plus more time for my screw ups, etc. About 5+ hrs of screwups on my last project- (button holer not working and 1 way directional fabric that you can only see in strong light, and a lot of seam ripping..)

My last project took about 5 days of my Christmas break. Project before that 10 hrs and never finished. One before that (easy circle skirt) 2 weekends + 5 evenings.  Yes, you can save time by reusing patterns and buying the fabric and notions for multiple at once, but it's still a lot! I don't have 15 extra hours in a month to use for sewing at this point in my life.  

 
pollinator
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I want to read all of this, but have a headache, so will do that later.  In the meantime, I've found shoes that are comfortable and last -- they are made in America, by SAS.  The first pair I had came from Goodwill -- I paid about five dollars for them.  So they were used when I got them.  After several years, I realized that I was still wearing them constantly, they didn't make my feet hurt (like just about all of my other shoes did after a few hours), and they were still in good condition.  So I found the company on-line and bought some new for myself and my daughter.  I still buy us each a pair of sandals every year for summer use, but the rest of the year we wear the SAS shoes almost exclusively.  They are expensive, but quickly pay for themselves because they last so well.

 
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I am a fan of TSC's blue mountain pants. 100%cotton kahki mens work pants. The material is holding up better then my mens carhartts. Not as soft though. But at $10 a pair during the sales? They work just fine.
 
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I didn't see anyone mention Red Ants Pants. Designed by and made for women in the U.S.A.

https://redantspants.com/products/original-work-pants/

And Tougher:

https://tougher.com
 
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