My first sewing project.

Yesterday I was positively GIDDY with the glory that is my brand new sewing machine. So after finishing up all of my housewifely chores, and reading half the manual, I decided IT WAS TIME. I put my younger daughter in the car and off we went to find my very first sewing machine project. And since I just knew my younger daughter would soon be demanding huge amounts of my attention, attention which would otherwise be captivated by the glow of the light on my new sewing machine, I was also looking for a foolproof bribe. Which I oh-so-conveniently found in the form of a 15 piece paint-your-own plastic suncatcher kit; the best $4 I have spent in quite some time.

As a complete novice sewing champion, I wanted to select a pattern which wouldn’t tax my repertoire of skills and throw me over the edge. Here is the pattern I selected:

It does look sort of complicated, but reading the back of the package I decided it would fit the bill, requiring only fabric, thread and the pattern itself. It was waay less complicated than the prom dresses featured prominently in the racks, and slightly more practical than the patterned scrubs, especially since I am not employed as a vet tech – well, not professionally anyway. I was not eager to undertake anything requiring elastic, buttons or zippers, since I hadn’t gotten to that section in the manual AND I WANTED TO SEW NOW!! I then chose a 100% cotton batik print from India, not only b/c I found it attractive, but also b/c I knew its busy pattern would mask any less-than-perfect stitching and/or slip-ups. It looks like this:

YES it IS PRETTY. Thank you.

So by mid-afternoon I’d delved headfirst into the wondrous world of My Very First Sewing Project. And then the fun began. Because I never knew how truly colorful my vocabulary is, nor just how thin I can stretch my patience.

As I laid out the fabric and removed the pattern from its paper sheath, I wondered WHAT THE HELL I’D GOTTEN MYSELF INTO. It’s been 20 years since Home Ec at Abington Jr, and a lot of other baggage has been crammed on top of the Suitcase of Sewing Knowledge in the interim. I pondered the thin tissue pages, I studied the pattern directions which seemed to have been written in some secret cuneiform for sewing professionals. I am a cook. I know basting, but WHAT THE HELL IS BASTING?? After several online consultations and a whole lot of worried sweating, I just said Screw It. and I started. I knew it wasn’t going to kill anyone if it wasn’t perfect, I AM NOT NASA.

So as I pinned, and pondered, and carefully cut, I simply prayed that this undertaking would not render me so angry I would throw my beautiful new sewing machine out the front window. And as I stitched and bitched, basted and un-basted, and jammed the bobbin for the UMPTEENTH F*CKING TIME, I knew, thread by thread, that I was earning my stripes. I was rediscovering the joy that is creation, and seeing what every creator sees. The wondrous beauty in form. Round about midnight (with a dinner break in between) it was DONE. Well, technically I still have to slip-stitch the bodice liner to the inner seam, but as you cannot SEE THAT IN THE PICTURE, it is DONE.

6 thoughts on “My first sewing project.

  1. OCD, thrill-seeking perfectionist addictive personality, I won’t mince words. Let’s just say *this tendency* of mine does sometimes lead me to undertake greater and greater challenges, with less and less allowable margin of error, but ISN’T THAT WHAT MAKES LIFE FUN????

    I believe my hardcore stance on life is more about getting the job done and less about leaving a bunch of half sewn fabric in a plastic bag under my bed for the next 5 years.

  2. have no idea why you even thought it was hard.. You made it look like a piece of cake! no one gets in on the ups and downs or designers plans or creative uses for the Ooops factor they all have. Bet you enjoy looking at her in it for Easter and spring and summer events with a smile on your face as people ask you “where did you find that great dress!” ask me how I know? *big smile*

  3. Thanks Hayden. I AM INTENSE. xo

    Joni, you are TOO SWEET!! Thanks so much for the lovely encouragement. I have begun Project #2, a simple skirt for yours truly, and am puzzling over the zipper. A real challenge since it appears I’ve been shorted a page of instructions. This would be about my speed. WISH ME LUCK.

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