When you like the garment but the model sucks
Hi everyone! I haven’t shared a proper garment post in ages. I can’t even say this is my newest make, because I sewed this little number last autumn, when it was way to cold already to actually wear it. Anyone else into off-season sewing?
The pattern is the fabulous Sew Over It Silk Cami, which I simply lengthened into an awkward not-quite-a-dress-but-too-long-for-a-top length. And I actually really like it! I looks really good paired with skinny jeans or even leggings. I’ve been wearing it to work like this a lot recently. I will definitely make it again – but lengthen it to a more appropriate hemline and maybe add some darts in the back. The Silk Cami is a fantastic little pattern to play around with. You can check out my project gallery to see some other versions that I have made.
The fabric is a lightweight polyester with a lovely peach-skin feel to it. I found it buried in my stash, so I am not entirely sure when and where I got it. I suppose it’s a survivor from one of my Goldhawk Road shopping sprees years ago! Well, I’m glad past-self bought it back then, because I really love this top/dress!
As nice as this project turned out, I wasn’t too keen on blogging it. And I thought I’d share why, because I feel that many of you might relate:
There are days when I hate myself in pictures.
I say days, because there are also days when I’m really into a blog shoot and love the pictures we took. But many times as on this particular day, we take 50-100+ photos and afterwards I find it really hard to find enough pictures for the blog post that I like. It can be really unnerving, because I do love most of my me-made garments and feel great in them and proud but it doesn’t always transport into the picture. Sometimes it even chips away at the initial joy a finished project brings.
Well, I’m a maker, not a model, but this is part of the job, when you choose to share your makes online. Some days it just takes so much more courage and self-acceptance than others.
Recently, sewing has more and more been connected to body positivity and as a mental health professional I can only applaud that. Generally, I think sewing helps a lot with body positivity. Wearing something that fits you well, suits your body shape and style and on top of that is handmade, is simply amazing. But I think we have to separate sewing from blogging-about-sewing in this case, because sharing pictures of yourself online is a whole different story. I’m not sure if it helps with body positivity or rather pushes insecurities. What do you think?
I will write a more in-depth article on sewing, blogging & body image and I’d love to hear your thoughts on this!
Stay in touch!
18 thoughts on “Blogging and Body Positivity and a Silk Cami Dress”
I recognise this feeling immensely. I am just about to start sewing a True Bias Ogden Cami. It is the first thing i’ve made that doesn’t have sleeves and the very thought of bearing this much flesh doesn’t sit well. However, the fabric I’ve got was too beautiful not to buy but too expensive to buy more than a metre so have convinced myself to get over it!
Well I guess in this case it seems it pushed you out of your comfort zone in a good way 🙂
I think that the media of today became more cruel in terms of body positivety, you are encouraged to “be yourself, love the body that you have” but the pictures show something else, the “body thta you love” should look apealing (and I am not speaking of being a model), right angle, right light, right color combination, backround etc. It looks more like a work of fashion shooting+modeling team than a relaxed, I just got out of the shower and trew something nice I sew. We demand more of ourself and become more conscious of how our body will look to the outer world, isnt it the opposite of body positivity? Accualy it all comes to something absolutely different- we thrive on social positive awearness but this is also what devours (haha) our soul (dramatic one 😉 ) we depend on how many like we got (or not- which is the real creteria, when in the sewing world nobody would really critisize your creation). You look great! Your cami looks great, your face shows your hesitation ( i bet you felt it while shooing as well). I dont shoot more than 5 pics and if edeting cant save those too I scrap it and that is it. Why should I care how someone will judge my photograping ability if all I wanted to show is how much I like my garment. Do I? 😉
Thanks for this, Genya! *high five*
I really like your response.
I think this is a really interesting topic and I’m looking forward to reading your next post about it. Actually just today my husband and I were talking about this, not sewing precisely but about travel. The background was a friend of ours who takes all kinds of holidays which seem more or less designed around taking as many photos as possible to put online. I think it’s a bit of a generational thing, the “pics or it didn’t happen” generation. And I think sewers can fall into the same trap – I know I do. Should I sew an eye-catching frock that I’ll wear once for the pics or some boring tops in black and navy? Should I self-draft, which I enjoy doing immensely, or buy a pattern that I can hashtag?
But on the other hand, searching for validation online isn’t all bad – it’s definitely pushed me to try new things and to be a better sewer in general.
You’re right! I also feel like sharing pictures definitely pushed my sewing game to much better levels. I get the “pics or it didn’t happen” thing sewing-wise. Now I sew more than I have time to blog and I often feel like I need to blog every make to kind of archive it. I try to relax a little and just have fun wearing my makes, and blog them when I feel like it.
Hmm, so interesting! I keep looking at your pictures trying to guess what it is you don’t like about them, and to be honest, I can’t imagine! I think you look lovely in all of these pictures. The important thing is that you don’t feel that way though! I wonder if using fewer pictures in a post would appeal to you sometimes? I think 3 pictures (front, back , side) is enough to get the gist across if you aren’t feeling the photos that day!
I actually just wrote a post myself about how important I think it is to practice taking photos, and to share them with the world. I think it’s so helpful for other people to see pictures of other sewists just looking like regular people! Personally, the photo side of things has been every bit as important on my journey of self-confidence and body-positivity! Here’s my post: https://craftingarainbow.wordpress.com/2018/06/14/presenting-better-pictures-project-at-pr-weekend/
Hi Gillian! Hehe, that’s because I posted the handful of pics that I actually liked 😉 I really enjoy the days when I’m feeling it and blog shoots are fun and enjoyable. On days I’m not comfortable being photographed we stick to front, side, back, too 🙂 But I usually dislike the pics, because they feel so forced. I’ll check out your post – thanks for sharing! x
I think your top is lovely and you look lovely too. I think taking 50-100 photos is about 45-100 too many. Sewing should be like yoga…. you work to your level, pushing a bit every time to improve your level, having the support and camaraderie of like minded individuals to encourage, support and rejoice in the process and the outcome. Enjoy your self.
I totally experience this, basically all the time! I know the post will be more appealing if I’m modeling, but the time it takes, and then thinking I look bad in all of them, is just so depressing. So usually I put it off, and put it off, and finally take photos on my dress form and call it a day. I love the connection in blogging, but this is not working! Anyway, your top is great and I think you look beautiful in it!
I think that when you are young you are a harse critic of your own body,face,clothing choices etc BUT mostly as you get older and reflect back you realize that actually you look fab and wish that you revelled it a bit more than you had! You should enjoy your young years, they go very fast. I think you look absolutely lovely and write a really interesting blog which I really enjoy reading.
I’m sorry you don’t feel comfortable about the way you, or your photos look. I do recognize it though, I also have had times where I thought I was making awesome photos, and afterwards I was like “yikes, do I really look that way?!” while other people did not see what I saw, at all… Just like now: I think your photos look great in this article!
Another way you can avoid adding photos of yourself would be to make photos of the garment on a dress form. I do that too sometimes, but that’s mostly because I have a hard time making proper pictures of my back, lol. So the main images become photos I liked from a photo shoot but might not show all the details of the garment, and the detailed pics are of my dress form. And my dress form never complains when I use it for a photoshoot, bless her 😀
Thank you for this. I’ve been contemplating writing about the very same thing but just haven’t fully formed my thoughts on it. I’m in the middle of a love-not love relationship with my body these days and it make sewing things a bit tougher. It’s good to see that others might have similar thoughts. Makes it a little less scary to admit it about yourself.
I would love to hear more of your thoughts on body positivity and sewing. I definitely struggled with my body image when I was younger, but sewing has been such a gift! Having clothes that fit well and that I am proud of- it makes a big difference. Also, taking and seeing pictures of myself regularly (because sewing blogging) definitely gives me a reality check/positive boost about what I actually look like. It’s a big deal to make clothes fit my body than wish that my body was different to fit the clothes
I definitely recognize that feeling of seeing myself in photos (or unexpectedly in a reflection in a shop window) and thinking “Oh noooo!”. But sometimes I feel “Heck yeah!” and I try to double-down on that feeling. 🙂
I like this silly meme – https://pics.me.me/pro-tip-for-bad-body-image-days-look-at-yourself-33990422.png
Let’s all be as nice to ourselves as we are to cats! ^^
Haha, I had to laugh out loud seeing the meme – I’ll definitely keep that in mind! x