15/07/2013 12:18 BST | Updated 22/05/2015 06:12 BST

Why I Wish I Could Sew

Aside from maths, textiles was my least favourite subject at secondary school. I can remember spending Wednesday afternoons crammed into one of the smallest classrooms in the building, along with 25 other girls who always managed to get to the best sewing machines first.

I'd like to think that aged 14, I wasn't the only one who found this lesson painful, but as the school I went to was all girls, my lack of interest was quite controversial at the time. (At least my mother felt the same way as I did – she wasn't exactly thrilled when I asked her to rescue my attempt at making a waistcoat the night before the project was due to be handed in).


I dropped the subject as soon as I could and thankfully, I had slightly more success baking apple cakes in Food Technology. Of course, my initial aversion for textiles classes means that I still don't know how to sew and while this hasn't ever bothered me before, the recent resurgence of baking, knitting, sewing has got me thinking: crafts are cool.

It's not just down to The Great British Bake Off or Sewing Bee either. Sure – Mary Berry and Patrick Grant have helped, but there's also an ever-growing group of equally skilled people who are opening sewing shops (which handily double up as cafes) in London's hippest boroughs.

Bloggers such as Tilly and the Buttons and Did You Make That? are just two of the names who have put sewing in the cool corner. Their blogs are glossy and palpable, packed with colourful photos of cute gingham skirts, shiny buttons and floral fabrics. Even the sewing patterns have chic-sounding names such as Miette and Mathilde.

Liberty of London is going back to its roots too. While the shop has always been admired for its signature printed fabrics and haberdashery., a recent newsletter got my attention thanks to the subject line, "Your weekend sewing project starts here". This made me think, does Liberty want me to start sewing as well? I wasn't embarking on a weekend sewing project, but I couldn't help but click through to take a look at the spring fabric collection. I'm not sure if I want to wear these arty prints or decorate my home with them but either way, they are beyond beautiful.

At the moment, all I can do is admire these fabrics for their aesthetic value, but those cool kids with their sewing kits could whip up a cushion cover in no time and guess what? The girl who hated textiles wants to be in their gang.

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