|Photo credit alfrancis|
Ok, I admit it. I have been poking around Craigslist, here and there, looking for sewing related gigs/jobs to fill in a few bare spots in my schedule. I like to keep busy, and I live and breathe sewing so it seems like a great fit.
While poking around, I started to notice some terminology being tossed around regarding the title of someone who sews. Growing up, I always heard "Seamstress" as the general term for someone handy with a needle and thread. Once I started sewing professionally, I started to notice the term "Seamster" to accommodate the men in the sewing world. I appreciated this because sewing has never been delegated to one gender alone.
Men and women had equal footing in the sewing world. However, if you've ever paid attention to history classes, war changes everything. World War II had women sewing for the war effort, men going off to war, and sewing became generally known as women's work. I will add that men still seem to have a foothold on tailoring professionally.
Now, today is a brand new (P.C.) world. Sewing has seen a(nother) rise in the past couple years. I have seen two new words become more common. People are saying "sewer" and "sewist" now. Mind you, that is sew-er, not the place our toilet empties out to, and that is my big issue with that word. On the other hand, I really like "sewist". It makes sense, it is gender natural, it is devoid of the mental images of "crafty" sewing that is ill-conceived and poorly constructed. My issue with the crafty stereotype is another post for another day. (spoiler alert! I prefer "D.I.Y." and "projects" over "crafts".)
I think we can all agree on sewist as the general term, and seamstress or seamster if we are discussing a particular person. Not that my word is law, or that I am maybe behind on this realization. I just wanted to openly address the issue I was seeing. Basically, I just want everyone to stop using the word "sewer" because we all read it wrong in our heads, and I don't think anyone likes to make that mental connection. What do you think?