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Inspiration

@timetosew | Sewing Influencer

Meet Kate Ng, aka @timetosew, a sustainable sewist with great attention to detail and a keen eye for style. Her work covers fabric production, consumer behavior and interviews with those making positive changes in fashion. She hopes you will be inspired to think about sustainable sewing and your own wardrobe!


How did you learn your craft?

A lot of practice! Supported by some local fabric store sewing classes, and then a number of intensive sewing courses at Central St. Martins (an arts school in London, UK) which covered general sewing, pattern drafting and also tailoring techniques. I also did a course on couture techniques. Because I wanted to know everything I could about sewing it was easiest to find people in the know to show me how to do things in effective ways. Then it just came down to practice and repetition.

What is your favorite project you’ve made?

Ahhh, that’s a fun question. My latest project always tends to be my favorite. But if I really have to choose I think I have to say the Daughter Judy Adams pants. These were in a deadstock olive cotton sateen twill and I wore them for days at a time in summer. I was so sad to put them away for autumn/winter (they are cropped and fabric a bit lightweight)! I had been looking for a pair of chinos for forever and a day as a jeans alternative, since I live in the Netherlands and wear jeans nine months of the year. These might just be my perfect pants. Plenty of fabric in my stash ready for me to make additional pairs when I feel my wardrobe calls for them.

How do you handle mistakes or setbacks when working on a project?

Do you know that sewing label “made with love and swear words” (by Kylie and the Machine)? Normally I put it away for a while and come back another day. With mistakes, the good news is that, unless you’ve trimmed things down or snipped into seam allowances, you can usually go back and unpick. But I have been known to ditch a project entirely if its really not OK and use the fabric for something else. I think it’s good to accept that it’s OK if not everything turns out the way that I imagined/wanted. At least for me it’s preferable to gritting my teeth and powering through something that doesn’t make me happy.

What are you currently making?

Multiple things in parallel: a jumpsuit (Addie by Fibre Mood), some winter clothes for the kids, finishing a quilt, then back to more pants given the weather! I’ve got my eyes on a lengthened version of the Eve trousers by Merchant & Mills with some teal corduroy.

If you could have anything in the world to support your craft, what would it be?

Time! I always (half) joke that I’d love to retire as soon as possible so I have time to craft all day long. For me the best thing is to have an efficient setup with everything ready to go as quickly as possible. Not to say that I’m super tidy—like many others my sewing space becomes a total mess when I’m mid project—but life is busy and a few minutes here and there really add up. Better to spend those minutes behind the machine or cutting table instead of looking for things.


For more of the most followed and admired sewers on Instagram, check out the Threads  Sewing Influencers collection.

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