Slow Going Sewing

That’s it?

A good part of the weekend has been spent huddled in the batcave over a SMALL sewing project for Janome. about 15 hours has gone into something that I would expect a 3 hour class could cover. What is wrong with me?

Let me explain from behind the scenes: Our theme this year is “Blossom” and I am working with the education team on a series of projects that express the many ways to blossom in our sewing. We each bring our unique styles to the table and hopefully, as a team, we meet the needs of our audience. I wanted to make my first project of the year to be something that specifically addressed how to make the theme have some personal relevance, as well include a calendar. It just seemed to make sense for a New Year’s project. Anyway…. We have a color palette, and I had the project sketched. I wanted to make a cute, fabric covered clipboard without using glue. This would mean stitching around the riveted clip on the board and that could be tricky, so I had to make a reasonable substitute. A little engineering was called for.

The idea seemed simple enough:

make the board out of 2 layers of Peltex™ around one layer of firm cardboard. This way, if the needle happens to hit the ‘board,’ nothing should break. Since this is a Janome project, I wanted to be sure to use a few of the accessory feet and decorative stitches. I also wanted to include at least one technique so that the project was worthy of passing on some information to curious sewists. Checklist:

  • Theme: Blossoms √
  • Materials: Assorted beads, ribbons, bulldog clip, elastic, memo pad, Star Threads & Bryant Park Fabric collection  √
  • Calendar: Printed free from (a lucky find) √
  • Objective: Create a stitched clipboard that expresses ‘blossoming’ with various sewing methods as well as a way for users to express their own ‘blossom’ aspirations for their sewing/creative life √
  • Estimated creative time: six hours ≠ HA!

You know that old traveling adage:

“Bring half as many clothes and twice as much money”? My sewing equivalent goes something like this:
“Expect a minimum of twice as many hours, half my expectations and put Pizza Pizza on speed dial because momma won’t be cooking tonight!”
Seriously. I work as if I am sewing in a pool of molasses. Every thread selection is a struggle (lay the threads atop the fabric, do some trial stitches, rip a few tries out…). Fabric placements go through endless permeations.  There is usually one gad-awful goof that causes a near complete reboot. Is this NORMAL?

But then the project will start to come together and the embellishments start to happen. New ideas come along and excitement builds. I will be bone chilled and tried in the cave, but excitement wins over my complaining self. This is over such a small, insignificant little project – but it is all mine and it is the fruit of what I love doing.

I may not always understand the artwork of others, but I can certainly appreciate this jazzed feeling a happy accomplishment; that bursting bud of blooming. There is nothing quite like it available on Amazon or in any shopping mall. I guess that I will have to accept that I am (and most likely always will be) a slow sewer. Not slow and steady, just slow. Minutes turn to hours that last in little remembered moments. And those are what keep me going back to the batcave.

Sew what you love!


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