With all the information available online today, we can learn to do almost anything if we start with a quick search on any device. So many modern makers have turned to the internet to to learn how to sew, or even just to learn how to sew better. Online resources are a huge part of their learning process, even though it takes practice to truly master the craft. Through our interviews and focus groups with makers who sew, we've found that online sewing tutorials are as useful for beginners learning the basics as they are for experts who want to learn a new skill or solve a specific problem. In all these cases, sewists turn to both their fellow makers and the brands they trust for the "how to" answers they need.
Experimentation is part of almost every craft in the Maker Movement today. Experimenting with new products and processes allows crafters of all kinds to express their own creativity and style in more authentic ways — otherwise, they'd buy something ready-made off a shelf. This is particularly true for makers who sew, whether they create clothes, home goods, or something else entirely. But there's one part of the sewing process that modern crafters are experimenting with more than ever: sewing patterns.
Makers who sew constitute a huge segment of the Maker Movement. Not only is there a huge community of passionate makers picking up and practicing the traditional art of sewing itself, but elements of sewing can be incorporated in multiple types of other crafts, like cosplay and even paper crafting. But whether someone is altering or sewing dresses, creating stuffed animals from a pattern or scratch, or embroidering pillows and quilts for the home, there's a list of common challenges that all of these makers are likely to share.
In order to help our clients create genuine connections with today's crafters, we continue to learn more about makers every single week. While secondary research is an important supplement to our knowledge of maker audiences, we've found truth and consensus in many of the anecdotes we collect from real makers that we're talking to face to face. In addition to 1-in-1 interviews, we've found that one of the best ways to get to know maker audiences is by assembling focus groups of makers to discuss the topics that matter the most to your brand.
In our experience, the best way to get to know today's makers is by engaging them in real, honest conversation. Using the connections we've made during our work with makers at ATA, we're inviting brands to get in on these conversations, too.