By: Angel | Discussion (1)

Lily in a dress I sewed.
28 July 2008

My mom bought this fabric (the fabric in the above picture) for “instant dress” when she visited this past summer.  She wanted to sew it together with Lily while she was here.  All you had to do was sew a seam up the back and sew on straps.  But we were so busy while Mom was here that she didn’t have time to do this project, so she asked me to make the dress.

Fast forward a couple of months, and I finally pull my sewing machine out.  Lily, being a child, is instantly curious and wants to be a part of the action.  So she puts the pins away as I pull them out, and she presses the “reverse” button on the sewing machine when I need to reverse.  We had a really good time together sewing this little dress.

Then Lily says that she wants to sew a princess dress together.  So we went to Jo-Ann Fabrics together, and she picked out a pattern and fabric (shiny candy-apple red by the way).  I read the How-to on the inside of the pattern last night, and there are all sorts of things that I do not know how to do: sewing darts, zippers, slipstitches, make “thread carriers” (whatever those are), working with slippery, shiny fabric, etc.  I’m very excited and a bit intimidated.  I plan to take it slow and with lots of help from my friend, the internet.

There is a stark contrast between my experience sewing and my experience writing.  Since I am a beginning seamstress, I don’t expect my work to be the most amazing thing ever created ever, and so I have a really good time sewing.  I torture myself when I write.  The joy was lost somewhere along the way between learning the craft and mastering the craft.  Who wants to be a master if the very thing you love is no longer enjoyable?

I’m looking forward to making this candy-apple red princess dress for Lily.  Now I just need to Google “sewing darts”…

By: Angel | Discussion (0)

Deb, Lily and I on the jet skis.
16 June 2007

I was surfing cafe press this evening — looking at the neat things that people have created — and I became exasperated with my own timidness. I’m done with being creatively timid. What a waste of time.

I like creating — writing, drawing, sewing, beading — I like creating a lot.

I like creating a lot.

By: Angel | Discussion (0)

With perseverance and hard work, Lani and the two beagles next door
finally busted a hole in the fence.
10 September 2006

The mistakes I’ve made so far while sewing these Halloween jammie pants:

  1. Cut out two left legs, so I had to go to the store to get more fabric to make two right legs.
  2. Tried three different ways to mark the bias of the cloth before finally discovering one that worked.
  3. Sewed the binding on backwards so had to remove the entire binding with the seam ripper, cut a new bias strip for binding, and sew it on.
  4. While pressing the binding, I melted it with the iron, so had to remove it with the seam ripper, cut a new bias strip for binding, and sew it on.
  5. When I put the jammie pants on after sewing the legs and crotch, discovered they were one size too small. They fit too snug across the bottom.

Sure, I’m learning how to cut, pin, sew, and press, but what I am really learning is patience.  I’m having to pull out an industrial-strength patience from deep within me so I don’t scream and then burst into tears.

I am so frustrated.  This is why so few people become adept at hobbies.  You have to really suck when you first begin a hobby…. I mean, really suck.  Sometimes it’s hard to get through that stage.

By: Angel | Discussion (0)

The first striking think I’ve learned about sewing is that it is not a fast hobby.  I realize that I’m a complete beginner, but after a day of work, all I’ve managed to do is cut out two of the four pieces of cloth and mark them.

True, at least half of the time can be attributed to my sheer lack of experience, but even accounting for that, sewing is a very slow process.  But I guess you can say that about almost any hobby.  Cooking, gardening, coding — to create anything requires a fair amount of time and effort.

My second observation regarding sewing: many sewing enthusiasts seem to have cats.  It turns out that cats are quite… well, let’s just use the word “mischievous” so I don’t piss off too many cat lovers.

Several times, I found Raven (my cat) sleeping on my fabric after I had laborously washed, dried, and ironed it.  After shooing her off more than once and I began working with the fabric (therefore she could no longer lounge on it), she decided my pattern (which had also been ironed) was second best to my fabric as a cushion.  Every time I removed her from my pattern and put it somewhere else on the desk, she would follow it like metal shavings following a magnet.  Every time I turned around, she was laying on the pattern again.  And finally, with my pattern and cloth laid out over the table as I was cutting the fabric, she tried several times to jump on the table.

Cats can be both annoying and funny in the sewing area.

Did I mention it was a slow hobby?  Hopefully I will complete my Halloween jammie pants before Halloween. 🙂

By: Angel | Discussion (0)

Lily and Cody
Christmas 2005 in Conroe, Texas

Sorry I’m only posting pictures at the moment — not writing much.  I was trying to put off learning how to sew until 2007, but the desire became too strong.  I bought my first pattern (an easy jammie pants pattern) and material.  And I pulled out the sewing machine.

I’m such a beginner that I don’t even know how to wind the bobbin or thread the sewing machine.  So I’m reading and doing and learning, and it’s fun!

So that’s what I have been doing.  Well, that and being with Matt and Lily.  So I’ve been busy.

Oh, and Sarah Q is going to sew with me.  It’s always more fun to learn a new hobby when you have someone to share the experience.  She’s making jammie pants as well.  I’ll post a picture of us in our new jammie pants when we’re done.

And I’ll be pregnant in the picture.  My baby belly is becoming quite visible now.  So it’ll be a pregnant picture as well. 🙂