So, as I have mentioned, I have recently started sewing lessons. After 4 lessons, I was qualified to complete not one, but TWO simple skirts. You may admire them…I’ll wait.
I wore the paisley one out this past Saturday, the day after I finished it, when I went out fabric shopping, and I told anyone who gave me the slightest opening that I’d made it myself, and it was my first project. So proud was I that I probably should’ve given up all pretense of coolness and hung it on the refrigerator (the traditional place for displaying good work). But when the random lady in the parking lot complimented my cute skirt without my saying a word or doing anything but walk to my car, noting the red rickrack peeking out from the hem, I was over the moon. I wore the owls to my lesson Thursday, and my teacher made a proud fuss, and if I’d been a puppy I would’ve wagged my tail hard enough to take off. I MADE DIS WIF MY OWN 2 HANDS AND SOMEONE BESIDES ME LIKES IT! SQUEEEEEE!
You have to understand…my sewing projects generally never see the light of day, so badly have I mangled them in the past. There were the stirrup pants in 10th grade that had too much waistband and not nearly enough crotch room. There was the jumper I tried to make and gave up when I couldn’t get the pocket on. I’m not sure what happened to the fleece socks I tried to make a couple years ago, but as I’m 100% certain I’ve never worn those socks, and don’t know where they went, doubtless they were yet another failed project, the memory of which has been stricken from both my mind and my house.
The result of my desire to learn, and this unprecedented success, is that I’ve become a little…obsessed…with the whole sewing thing, because for the first time in my life, it actually seems attainable. I’ve always loved clothes. I love them a lot. And when you’re 5’ 10” and fat, putting together a considerable wardrobe takes dedication and effort, because there’s not always a lot available, and what is available ain’t cheap. I’m not so much interested in fashion as I am personal style and aesthetics. But given how much I love cool duds, it’s surprising it’s taken me this long to start sewing. Now that I have, though…I think I might be in trouble.
I’m in that hobby infatuation stage where I just want to learn every little thing about sewing, because it’s all so fascinating and darling and I’M JUST SO EXCITED! I’m buying books and magazines about sewing. I’m reading tutorials on the web about sewing. I’m searching out examples of stuff I’ve seen in the past and want to make. I’m studying options for making a custom dress form out of duct tape/paper tape/papier mache. I’m daydreaming clothing designs in my head, imagining all the things I’ve always wanted but couldn’t get because they weren’t available in my size, or colors I liked, or don’t yet exist because the world was waiting for ME! YES ME! to design them. (My daydreams sometimes tend to delusions of future grandeur.) I’m buying all kinds of notions I never knew until recently I couldn’t live without. Seriously, I bought a tailor’s ham, and upgraded to a better rotary cutter and a comfort-grip seam ripper, not to mention new measuring tools. Oh right–and a new (to me) sewing machine that doesn’t make my every attempt at sewing a nightmare rat’s nest of thread and every word out of my mouth profane. (Just my normal every 4 words.)
But the most dangerous part is the fabrics. Pretty, pretty fabrics. We have a store here called SAS Fabrics, and I was in there once, 13 years ago, on the hunt for fabric I could fudge somehow into something resembling Roman garb for our Latin Day at school. I went back in Saturday, and I think I was lost in there for 2 hours. Maybe more. Because what they have is an an overwhelming collection of piles upon piles upon still more piles of all kinds of fabrics in bolts and pre-cut yardages, plus pretty much any kind of trim you can imagine. And if you have the patience to paw through endless piles of fabric, and you are pure of heart, you can find some great stuff, different from what you can get at Jo-Ann’s or Hancock, and at a major discount, too. I talked to a lady who was on the hunt for Amy Butler fabrics to resell on eBay, no doubt to finance her own fabric habit for her own projects.
Evidently, I was exceedingly patient and pure of heart, because before long, I had a pile of fabric I absolutely could not leave without, and my arms couldn’t hold any more. (It’s a damn good thing they don’t have carts there; often, running out of hands to hold things is the only self-control mechanism I have.)
Most people who sew, or do any kind of craft with regularity, build a stash of materials for their projects, and they build this stash over time. Case in point: my bead stash is significant enough that if I didn’t buy another bead for the next decade, I’d still have enough to keep me in personal projects and birthday/Christmas/no-reason-at-all gifts for all 10 years. The guiding principle behind any stash is, “Even though I do not have any specific craft plan at the moment that calls for this particular material, it is so brimming with innate awesomeness that I’d probably better get it now, because it won’t be here later/won’t be on sale anymore, and then won’t I be sorry? I’ll figure out what to do with it later.” It is the epitome of unmandated funding.
It is a very slippery slope, however, because it seems that I am going for the instant stash. I’ve got a whole lotta fabric going on already. But I have ideas for every bit of fabric I bought. There are skirts and tops and dresses in those fabrics–I can see them now!
Well, except for maybe the ants-on-the-tablecloth stuff. That was just too cute to leave behind, and there was only a small piece. I’ll figure out what to do with it later. Believe it or not, I did show some restraint. I left the pink flannel with the skulls on it behind. But only because they had tons of it, and I don’t know how to do pants yet.
Yep, I’m in big trouble.