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Perfectly Imperfect; Burda Style Magazine 2/23 No. 129 Bermuda Shorts

Embracing Imperfection with Burda Style Bermuda Shorts

Are you a perfectionist when it comes to your sewing projects? I totally understand. As a fellow sewist, I know we tend to obsess over every tiny flaw. But, striving for perfection shouldn't be our main goal. In fact, some of the most amazing artistic creations have imperfections that make them unique and beautiful. It's time to let go of the need for perfection and embrace the joy of creating.

Brad Schultz models his newly sewn Burda Style bermuda shorts.

I'll be honest, even though I recently wrote a blog post about sewing welt pockets, I still struggle with perfectionism when it comes to pockets and finishing touches on my projects. They always look good, but never good enough, you know what I mean?

finished welt pocket

For this particular project, I used a linen rayon blend fabric with a unique construction that almost looks like gauze. It's not loosely woven, but the fibers are easily pulled and the fabric has a textured feel to it. This made it a bit challenging to achieve crisp finishing, especially with topstitching. I wrote about my topstitch choices in my last post, but looking back on this Burda Style bermuda shorts project, I probably should have skipped the topstitching on the welt pockets altogether. It would have given a cleaner look. Also, this was my first time adding button loops to the welt pockets, and I realized too late that the loops should have been longer for a better button placement.

Instead of fixating on perfection, let's shift our focus to the experience. Each project is an opportunity to learn and strengthen our skills. Sure, we'll make mistakes and face setbacks along the way, but it's all part of the learning process. Experience doesn't mean perfection, but it does bring resilience – the ability to adjust, correct, and keep going.

Brad Schultz showing difference in hemmed and unhemmed shorts.

In terms of the sewing techniques I used, I initially modeled the hem and topstitching after a pair of store-bought shorts with a similar design. But once I sewed the first leg, I realized it wasn't what I wanted. The topstitching was too heavy for this fabric, and I preferred a longer hem length to enhance the fabric's drape. So, I decided to remove the original hem from one leg, shorten it to 1 inch, and secure it with a blind hem stitch. This allowed the fabric to hang nicely without a prominent topstitching line.

Sometimes we set such high standards for ourselves that we forget the true purpose of creating – to bring joy and fulfillment to our lives. Embracing imperfection as an art form allows us to release the pressure to be perfect and simply enjoy the process of creating.

A friend once shared an interesting fact with me about Native American art. The Native American artisan intentionally added mistakes into their creations because they believed that perfect works captured the soul of the creator. Imperfections, on the other hand, showed the human and imperfect nature of the creator – just like all of us. It's a beautiful sentiment, and one I hold onto as I sew.

So, here they are – my finished project, perfectly imperfect. Truth is, only I will notice the small flaws, but those imperfections remind me of the beauty in embracing imperfection. Let's stop striving for perfection and instead focus on the experience, learning, and growth that comes with creating. Mistakes and imperfections can add character and beauty to our creations. And most importantly, let's remember that our creations don't need to be perfect. As we let go of the desire for perfection, we can truly embrace the joy and fulfillment that creating brings. Let's celebrate the beauty of our imperfect creations.

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