How Sew Last Summer Started
Hey Sew Solid Crew, I hope you’re ready to strap in!
I’ve had a few requests for this one, so I thought, “how better else to kickstart the blog”?
Sew Last Summer was born in Autumn 2020 as Shimmer and Sew, by me, for me. I had no clue what I was doing (I’m still learning), and I had no idea it would be as successful or as fun as it has been.
I was a child I had MANY career path inspirations - teacher, pop star, choreographer (if you know me, you know I can’t dance!), volcanologist. I could never decide on one career, as such I never did A-Levels, I never went to college or university and I’ve worked various customer service jobs since I was 15 (so over 16 years)!
In Summer 2020, my boyfriend bought me a sewing machine as I lost my job due to covid in the summer, but I didn’t pick it up for a few months as I was too busy playing Animal Crossing. I had big plans - and still do - to make clothing for myself, and one day for other. Maybe, I’ll become that fashion designer I dreamed of as
I started out making scrunchies and face masks, classic covid! Just for friends and family although I realised I could run this alongside a new job. At first we were using new materials, but after some research Irealised how much of a negative impact producing fabric has on our planet - in my personal life I try to reduce my environmental impact as much as possible, so it made sense to look into alternative fabrics for my growing business.
After several weeks research, and some samples from suppliers, I found a few great true dead-stock suppliers who I still work closely with today. They’re independently owned or small business themselves, which is even more meaningful. Many businesses similar to mine use a lot of charity shop or secondhand clothing to make their products, personally I prefer not to. My main reason for this is that often you’ll be looking for plus size or larger size fabrics, which are good quality so you can make as many pieces as possible for less of a cost. However, the impact this can have on fat and plus size people is that it means there are even less options for them. Many people using charity shops are doing so because they’re accessible and at an affordable price point, by buying up the limited quantities of larger sizes, we are potentially taking clothes from people who need them and may not be able to access them otherwise.
Originally we were selling via Instagram DM and Etsy, and following our name change in early 2021, we launched sewlastsummer.com with several new products including our best selling hair bands, reusable bamboo face wipes, eye masks, bucket hats, bum bags and more. We haven’t looked back since and I’m so glad I started this hobby and business for my own sanity.
I have chronic mental and physical illness, and having Sew Last Summer really gives me something to focus on!
If you have any questions or topics you would like to see us discuss, then leave a comment below!