Transitions

We are moving again, this time back home. Hopefully Casey will be able to follow at some point, for the time being it looks like we are transitioning to a life without him again.

I've also been thinking about the direction I'd like my blog to take. I've used it so far for random musings and ramblings. I don't think it is all that interesting and it isn't nearly as therapeutic as I wanted it to be. I'm not at all sure what direction I am going in yet........time will tell I guess. For now I think I am just going to answer a question I saw on another blog:

Who taught you to sew?

Who taught me to sew? Well......that is hard to say. You might think it is a black and white question so it deserves a black and white answer, but that isn't the case here. I can say that I learned from my grandmother and my nana..but actually I am self-taught. Perhaps I should clarify. As far back as I can remember I've had a love for sewing notions, I didn't really give it any thought at the time.....I didn't know these things were really used in sewing. I would spend hours upon hours sorting through the buttons in my moms button jar. I would dump it on her sewing desk and sort them by shape, color, size, and type. I would pick them up and let them run through my fingers, glue them to paper....they just fascinated me. At my mimi's house she had a little powder hem thing and a closet full of fabric scraps. I would also play with these for hours,folding and unfolding, putting pretty colors and prints together....I have always loved fabrics. But by the time I started jr. high those days were long gone, the button jar disappeared when we moved and mom never sewed much anyways so she didn't bother collecting more. I had home ec but we could only sew lame pillows with cheap fabrics, I had no interest, only dorks sewed and I would never be caught dead wearing handmade things. Fast forward a few years to my first child. Something within me was stirring, my creative outlets were no longer enough, I wanted to do something other than draw or paint. So I bought my first pattern and some fabric, dragged out moms old sewing machine and managed to sew the armholes and neck hole shut. I had no idea what most of the stuff on the pattern meant, I was so frustrated. I ripped the seams out and started again and this time I successfully sewed through my finger but at least I had a finished garment. With a zipper, collar, puff set-in sleeves.......it was not a beginner's project but I didn't know that. And in 1998 there was no youtube or great sewing blogs with tutorials and videos. There was just me, my frustration, and an ancient sewing machine. My sweet little girls first birthday was fast approaching and I knew I wanted to make her dress, I HAD to make her dress. Of course I went for another challenge, a dress with set-in puffy sleeves, a button-down back, a collar, and a lined pinafore to go over it. What was I thinking? I did it though and it was a success, beautiful, I was so proud. From there it was a fancy princess halloween costume made out of some cheap satin stuff that I swore I would never use again....but of course I have. Still, I wasn't exactly hooked on sewing. I went another year or so without sewing a thing. Then my great-grandmother passed away. My mom and I went to her house to help take care of her belongings. There was a ton of sewing stuff, patterns from the 1940-1970's, fabrics, trim, needles, boning, magazines, books.....all sorts of treasures. I took all of these home with me. Most of the stuff was dry-rotted and moth-eaten but I kept what I could..and I kept all the patterns. I also came across a little notebook.....in it were measurements of women she knew, their preferences, dress pattern reviews that she had written for herself, and notes on sewing techniques or shortcuts. There was also a wonderful book of sewing from 1943 that showed how to sew damn near anything, from bras to diapers, brand new upholstery. In this way my Nana taught me how to sew and she taught me that I have a love of sewing. Since then I have done more and more with my machine. I now make my own diapers, many of my girls' clothes, birthday dresses, halloween outfits, purses...and even the flower girl dress my oldest wore in a friends wedding. Not a day goes by that I don't sew something, I have gotten books, watched tutorials, learned things that I never thought I could do. Next on my list is smocking and heirloom techniques. I have also started an esty shop and hope that people like my original designs as pattern making is still new to me. I am amazed at how far I've come in the 10 years that I sewed the neck hole of a dress shut and can't wait to see

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