Friday, May 15, 2009

You sew rock!

Thank you all for your comments on my last post, you have no idea how incredibly helpful they were! Turns out some of you love sewing, which gave me hope; some of you hate sewing, which gave me comfort; and some of you offered terrific advice, which gave me inspiration.

I think one of the reasons this has all been so damn frustrating is that m
y mom was a sewer. She even made one of my favorite childhood outfits - a blue dress that I happen to be sporting in my fourth grade class photo. :) Right now, however, she lives a billion miles away and I miss her terribly. *sniff* Part of me desperately wants to love sewing and be good at it, because that and using her Singer will make me feel more connected to her. (Speaking of, I should clarify that I would never sell the Singer, way too much sentimental value!)

So, based on your comments and advice, I've decided to keep at it for a little while longer, installing a few new tactics to try and diffuse the hate:

1. Ditch the boring fabric!
Out of abject fear that I'll screw up something pretty, I've been using crappy fabric. Boring, scratchy, blah, snooze. If you don't like the material, you're not going to like working with it, right?

Solution: I've dug out several yards of what I think is cotton (?) in two fun Hawaiian prints
and will start with those instead. One, I've got plenty to screw up with! ;) Two, there's more than enough make several projects, so I can get more experience before busting out the prettier prints. Three, I like them, but won't be heartbroken if some of it lands in the trash.

2. Make something you'll enjoy!
The basic projects I've tried so far aren't really things I *want* to make. I picked them because they were snoozingly simple and might help establish some foundational skills. So yeah, the fabrics were boring AND the projects were boring - no wonder I've been hating it!

Solution: I need a project bag for sweaters (the Ziplocs that I normally use get rather squished as the sweater progresses), so why not try a drawstring bag or two? The throw cushions on the couch could use some new covers, and tote bags always come in handy! Those are all are basic enough projects, but way more fun than a napkin square. Plus, they're items I'll use often, even if they don't turn out that great.

3. Divide, distract, and conquer! I've been tackling said boring projects from beginning to end in one sitting - cut, iron, sew, rip, sew, etc., all without a break. That's several hours of frustration and boredom (boredom generally referring to the ironing) in one concentrated dose.

Solution: I need to
break it up and distract myself between each stage - and sometimes within each stage. I've found just the thing, too: wedding albums! Our respective families still have yet to receive an album from our wedding which was *cough* six years ago. The photographers shot 30 rolls of film, with an average of 9 negative strips per roll, all of which need to be scanned in at high res. It's a daunting project - as is sewing. Now I can use each to distract from the other! So I'll cut, scan, iron, scan, sew, scan... well, you get the picture.

Plus, once all the negs are scanned, I'll need to crop, retouch and re-size the photos, then design the albums - dude, I'll be able to distract myself for a year! And since our families have pretty much given up on ever getting a wedding album from us, it'll be a nice surprise when they're done. ;)

With this new approach in hand, we'll see how it goes! And if I still end up hating it, well, you know what? That's okay, too. It'll leave me more time to knit!

P.S. Here's the Amazon link to that super-cool sewing cabinet (mine was a gift, have I mentioned that my in-laws rock?).
It took an hour or so to assemble, but wasn't too difficult. Oh, and here's a link to another store that specializes in sewing machine cabinets, if you're looking for more options!


Anonymous Jeanne said...

Glad you found a way to approach it - makes sense that if you didn't like what you were sewing, that it would be boring. Good luck - can't wait to see what you end up making!

5:42 AM  
Blogger Kaye said...

I'm with you, my mom is a prolific sewer and one of the reasons I couldn't bring myself to get rid of The Beast (my machine) is because she rescued him from Joann's, cleaned him up and brought him home (she used to work there an he was a return I guess...).

7:22 AM  
Blogger cpurl17 said...

You are sew wise and a cut above! ok, I'll stop now before I embarass myself further.

6:30 PM  
Blogger chemgrrl said...

Oh yay, I thought I was the only one. I haven't yet ordered the pictures from my wedding. And that was, um, five years ago this August? Giggle.

8:44 AM  
Blogger IrishgirlieKnits said...

I've got to try the sewing thing. I too have all the stuff...the machine, the pretty fabric (that's my downfall too), the books! I will definitely take this advice and start with pretty fabric and an easy project I'll like!

Good luck! Keep us posted!

9:19 PM  
Blogger Nell said...

I have some quilts planned for some babies in our life. But I have very little crafting mojo lately. Hopefully it'll be back soon.

2:16 PM  

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