Saturday, December 19, 2009

In Stitches

I have always had a lot of hobbies. I blame it on my mother. I grew up with a mother who could paint, sew, knit, crochet, and take amazing photographs. She has always been an incredibly creative person, and when you grow up in that environment it's hard not to pick up a few things. I alternate between being easily distracted (ooh, shiny!) and then becoming intensely focused on a single thing. If I try to juggle too many interests at once I end up with dozens of half finished projects and an endless pursuit of new things to do.

That's why I tend to let certain things fall by the wayside for a while. One of those things was sewing. As a kid, I had access to plenty of fabric scraps, needles, and thread. I'd make clothes for my barbie dolls, stitch together little pocket sized dolls, sachets, and other random projects (such as a patchwork cat with a zipper in its back). I taught my best friend how to sew, and we'd sit together and make things. I think she still has the lap quilt we made when we were about ten years old.

As I got older, sewing became one of those hobbies that got lost in favor of all the other things I liked to do. I was never great at it, but good enough for my little projects, so it wasn't a major skill I was neglecting.

I recently decided to dust off my sewing needles and give it another go. Partially through necessity, since my fiance seems to rip holes in nearly every article of clothing he owns, but also just for the fun of it. I know I will never be great at it. I don't have the time to devote to learning how to do anything beyond simple things, and frankly I probably should not be allowed near sewing machines. A big needle that moves rapidly up and down in close proximity to my fingers is a bad idea all around. If you doubt me on this, ask me how many times I've been to the hospital for stitches, or how many times I came awfully close to needing them. The answer would be "many", in case you were wondering.

I'm not overly ambitious with it. I know my limitations and am quite happy cobbling together the odd project here and there for my own amusement. I bought a bunch of felt and have been stitching up little christmas ornaments. I'm hardly turning out things that would land me on Project Runway, but something about making cheery little snowmen and mice is very satisfying. It reminds me of being a kid again, and my mom teaching me how to make my first crooked, overly large stitches while she was working on some project or another. My fiance just might come home and find all of his clothes patched with snowmen shaped patches.

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