How to Make Your Own Clothes on a Budget 

Posted October 13, 2023 by in Fashion
hands sewing under sewing machine light

There are many great reasons to make your own clothes, but the potential cost can often put people off trying. It makes sense, especially as the initial outlay to making clothes can cost quite a bit of money when you need certain tools and fabrics to make it happen. 

However, as with everything, there are ways to make this cheaper if you have a budget to stick to, which means you can still enjoy making your own clothes without breaking the bank.

With this in mind, the following article is going to take a look at how you can make your own clothes on a budget and what you need to get started. Ready to learn? Let’s get into it!

Person's hands sewing using sewing machine

Start Small 

The temptation to get every tool or item that you possibly can, and at the highest quality, can be very real when starting a new hobby. Some might feel like they cannot start at all until they have everything their heart desires – but this is usually the fastest way to shoot yourself in the foot before you’ve even started. Starting small is usually the best approach for most hobbies, as you get an understanding of how much you enjoy it and which areas you might be more interested in than others. 

In the case of clothing-making as a hobby, get yourself a picker and unstitch an old t-shirt you no longer use to get an idea about patterns or practice some basic sewing stitches. Before buying your own, you could even borrow a sewing machine from someone to see if you like it.

Try Scrap Fabric 

Scrap fabric stores are a great way to get hold of fabrics that still have a lot of life in them or have never been used before, but for a fraction of the price. See if you can find some in your local area – or you can also head out to thrift shops and repurpose any fabrics you discover that you love. 

This is also an excellent option for those who are making children’s clothes, as obviously they need much less fabric than adult-sized clothing! 

Find Free or Affordable Patterns 

Patterns for clothes can be expensive, so it is best to shop around to find something similar to what you like but for a fraction of the price. Using old clothes, you can unpick and create the same patterns from the clothes panels, which allows you to replicate something you love. 

For instance, Lycra is a popular fabric for activewear and stretchy garments, and replicating patterns from existing clothes can be a cost-effective and sustainable way to create new pieces. You can also download Lycra clothing patterns to sew today for casual and semi-business attire. You can find dedicated online platforms offering free clothing patterns, and some come with a small fee.

If you are looking for patterns for children, check out these sewing instructions if you want to make clothing for your baby boy to get you started on your journey! There are tons of patterns available, and you don’t have to spend a fortune to find the perfect one for your preferences and skill level.

Take a Course 

If you really are a newbie to sewing, knitting, or clothes making, getting some professional help from the beginning can save you a lot of money and time. There are plenty of free resources on YouTube and low-cost courses online or have a look in your local area for community sewing programs.

When selecting a sewing course, it’s crucial to consider your skill level, preferred learning format, and the course content. Explore in-person classes, online courses, and video tutorials based on your learning preferences and schedule. Examine the curriculum to ensure it covers the specific techniques and projects you want to learn. 

Evaluate the instructor’s qualifications and teaching style by checking reviews and testimonials. Consider class size and interaction opportunities, whether in-person or online. Be aware of the materials and tools required for the course, and check for flexibility in scheduling and access. Evaluate the course’s cost in relation to its value, considering subscription models for cost-effectiveness.  

Seek reviews and recommendations from others who have taken the course, and assess whether certification is important to you. Lastly, inquire about continued support or resources provided after course completion to aid in ongoing skill development.

Woman cutting fabric next to sewing machine

Have you ever made your own clothes? Let us know in the comments below!