Editor’s Note: Sewcialists is thrilled to welcome a new niche community site to the sewing world! We feel like a family along with Curvy Sewing Collective, Sew Over 50, Sew Queer, Chronically Sewn, and Meet Makers of Colour, and there is ALWAYS room for more!
For a while now, I’ve really wished that there was a home on the Internet for radical fat sewing content and fat sewing opinion pieces. Basically, the go-to-place for the ‘radical fat separatists’ in the sewing community*. I also wanted to celebrate plus-size/fat makers during Me-Made May this year after my #MeMadeMayPlus hashtag** so quickly became such a huge treasure trove of plus-size sewing inspiration in 2019.
So, I set up Fatsewing.club! I thought it was a cool name, but the decision was mostly made because the .club was one of the cheapest options to buy, and I wasn’t really sure how it would be received. Conveniently, the whole URL could be an Instagram username too, so we’re Fatsewing.club over on Instagram too.
I wanted to make sure that the blog was every bit as equitable as the Sewcialists blogging system—that it was the furthest thing from a popularity contest as it could be. I was also really worried about ensuring that the space was really safe and welcoming for all fat sewists, that the comments would be screened and deleted with impunity, and that this would encourage people to be really honest with their words.
We started off by sharing blogs about how makers got involved with #MMMayPlus2019 and their plans for #MMMayPlus2020, including Me Made Flat Lay from JessTerracotta, Sketching Me Made May from SewPrettyinPink, Me Made May Musings from Daisysewcrazy, and Me Made May & Slowing Down from TheLadyWhoLunches.
After a couple of days of sharing all the pictures arriving through the #MMMayPlus2020 hashtag, I had to admit defeat. I enlisted Bronywn of PrittyStitches to help with sharing posts to stories. Then Instagram shut down our account because I suppose they thought we were sharing too many stories. Since then, Bronwyn’s been doing an incredible job creating community spirit by sharing a random selection from the hashtag and making sure everyone gets some love!
We’ve been able to share some great opinion pieces (which I think are really powerful and compelling) over on the blog, including:
Why am I angry?
Sized Out – Fat Sewing and Me
The Make-Thrift Dilemma of Plus Size
I will no longer sew patterns that don’t fit my body
I’ve put out a couple of calls for people to write about specific topics, but I’ve had to keep my eyes open for people who share interesting opinions in their stories and people who’ve posted comments that caught my attention and ask if they’d like to blog. People don’t volunteer because they think that they’re not who I have in mind. Anyone who identifies as fat and has something to write about is exactly who I have in mind, so if you’re interested, please do get in touch as we’d love to welcome you to the Fat Sewing Club!
* A phrase which @the_catwood mentioned on her stories once, and I’ve been enamored with every since!
** The MMMayPlus and MeMadeMayPlus hashtags started in 2019 and were the logical extension to the idea I had of adding ‘plus’ at the end of any hashtag to create a fat sub-hashtag. Of course, remembering to add the plus at the end of every hashtag to make #zadiejumpsuit into #zadiejumpsuitplus ended up being quite a lot of work on the part of the individual and worked with varying degree of success (and honestly, mostly I forget to do it, but I can remember for one month once a year)!
I’m Jess, and you can find me at fat.bobbin.girl and BroadInTheSeams.com. I’m also 1/2 of sewing pattern making team Muna and Broad, which specialises in sewing patterns from 46-71.5″ hips, and I coordinate the FatSewing.Club blog. Currently, I live in lovely Christchurch, New Zealand.