With the sewing industry seeing a surge in interest over recent years, we’ve caught up with Hochanda TV Presenter and Sewing expert Mandy Noble to find out what’s influenced this rise.
According to the Association for Creative Industries UK, more than one million people have taken up sewing in the last three years, the majority women. This might not have come as a surprise for most within the industry, with TV Shows and trend-focused influencers bringing the craft to a brand new audience.
We asked Mandy a few questions to see what she thinks of this rise in popularity, and what she thinks has driven this surge.
What attracted you to sewing?
“My Mother and Grandmother were my main inspirations as a child. They showed me how to create clothing for my dolls and how to sew my own blankets, and since then I have been hooked! My main love is textiles, I love the different textures, colours and patterns, which stayed with me throughout my education and led me to study at the Art College. I became interested in quilting when I was a little older, I visited an exhibition on quilting when I was 19 which was fascinating. The ability to tell a story through quilt making was what inspired me the most!”
Have you seen a rise in people taking up sewing and soft crafts?
“I think there has been a rise of women in their 30’s & 40’s taking up sewing as a new hobby, or re-visiting it. It’s definitely noticeable when going to trade shows, especially with the amount of new, trend-focused influencers out there that have been created through TV shows like The Great British Sewing Bee. I think a lot of people recognise that having a hobby that you’re good at can actually become a career now, you don’t always have to be confined within stereotypical job roles. I have spent a lot of time going to schools to speak to children about sewing and crafts, and they find it amazing that you can have a career out of something you love doing in your spare time.”
Do you think TV Shows like The Great British Sewing Bee have had an effect on this?
“Definitely! TV shows like this and Kirsty Allsopp’s Homemade Home have brought craft’s like sewing to a wider audience and brought its many possibilities to light.
Do you think there has been an increase in a younger audience getting involved with sewing and softcrafts?
“Yes, there’s definitely a younger audience engaged with sewing and I think it is on the rise. It’s much easier for people to get into sewing and crafts in general now, with so much inspiration at the click of a button. If someone wants to learn how to use a sewing machine, and their family don’t know how, all they have to do is type it into YouTube and follow an online tutorial. Within minutes you could be learning the basics through your computer screen! I think social media has definitely had a big effect on providing younger people with inspiration for crafting and sewing too, sites like Pinterest give you hundreds of inspirational ideas and images instantly.”
What trends do you love at the moment?
There’s a few trends that I love at the moment! I’m particularly loving the injection of green into a lot of home décor and sewing projects, down to Pantone’s colour choice of the year being Greenery. I’m loving the fresh green colours and I think they match perfectly with strong, jewelled colours for summery quilts and cushions. I’m also loving how popular unicorns and mermaids are becoming at the moment, it’s the perfect trend for getting young girls into sewing!