Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Sewing Returns!

Aren’t these cool? My mother-in-law gets the Cre8tive Cowgirl award this week (if there were such a groovy award!) These cool pillows were crafted by her the night before seeing me! Is that amazing or what? I admire sewers. Judy is very talented in this field; she makes shirts for all of her sons and grandsons, chaps for the little cowboys (with their names on them) and even a little pair of jeans for Pryce. She now has a very cool machine that she’s used to embroider jackets with. Very cool~

In my very unqualified hands, those pillows wouldn’t have turned out that straight, nor would the final results have ended so perfectly. I know my limits and I know my stubbornness so yes, I could make pillows and eventually they would turn out ok but I have a feeling it would take a few tries!

Sewing is kind of a lost art, but from what I have seen this summer from the crafty people that I am connecting with, it is making a comeback in a huge way. I admit that I have had more than one opportunity to learn how but until this summer, it hasn’t appealed to me. Both my mother and my grandmother were avid sewers. In fact, instead buying me an expensive Cabbage Patch Kid, my Grandma Ruth made me one. She ordered a kit, complete with a head, and the body. We “birthed” this beautiful baby together. Of coarse grandma did ALL of the sewing, but I was right there with her. It was a joy to see her hands go to work. She made sure to stuff my doll full too, we didn’t want a skinny baby, no way! When the doll’s body was complete, grandma went to work making clothes for her; that was a treat! When it came time to name her, I wanted a traditional, colonial name (at the time I was reading about Pilgrims in grade school.) So this is how “Patience” was born. The name was pretty appropriate too. I had none! And it was clear that sewing was not my thing. I was not a natural and in no way intrigued by the idea of making things from scratch. I preferred to spend my time riding my horse and helping my dad outside. Freedom to me was not going to be found in a house with a sewing needle. YUCK.

It didn’t change when I was in high school either. One semester of Home-Ec was enough. I wobbled my way through a Hawaiian shirt pattern and shorts that my mom helped me finish. No thanks, still not interested. I signed up for shop class.

Even after I got married and had my first child, those “nesting” instincts never showed up. I was plenty happy to buy rather than make anytime. Oh there were signs of creativity that usually cropped up around Christmas time or a little before. I would spy a nifty craft or something in a magazine that would make a great gift. My mom helped me make fun signs out of our old wooden fence, \ Judy helped me make travel pillows (she did the sewing) Chad helping me make recipe card holders with forks and Jen helped me make a handy carrier out of placemats and sandwich bags, of coarse, she did the sewing! Usually after the holiday though all that inspiration would die down and with the layers of work, laundry and daily home keeping, crafts of any kind would only be a distant memory.
Somewhere along the line though something has shifted! I credit my friend Sheri with the opening. After revisiting scrapbooking, under her patient guidance, I slowly started reconnecting and expanding my creative abilities. My confidence has slowly grown with each layout. Scrapbooking has taught me to look at color combinations in new ways. It has motivated me to take chances, try new things and hone my unique style. I don’t do it as much as I used to and some of my ideas never make it to a page but a theme for each day pops into my head as I am getting ready to retire for the night. My personal style is a bit hard to explain; I think things off balance, mismatched and hodge-podged together. I like wild pages, unexpected layouts and fresh, fun ideas……. kinda like………… life!
This summer I am ready to return to something I had the opportunity to learn long ago. I inherited Grandma Ruth’ sewing machine. It has patiently waited at the ranch, until I was ready to claim it. I must say, I have no clue how to run it, I barely know how to thread a needle, but I trust that I am being guided by a very talented, cre8tive lady who spent a lot of time on that machine. It is funny how some things are meant to be, even if they take a long time to come back around. This time though, I am ready. I’ve had a lot of fun “playing outside”, discovering and learning. It feels to me that one of the most exciting frontiers for me to face is the one that lies within my own being. I am excited to see what lies ahead!

I celebrate and honor those who are so naturally gifted, those who embrace and exercise their crafts and talents. We all have them, in one form or another. I invite you to begin exploring with me. If you’ve wanted to learn how to play in instrument or return to a dusty old sewing machine, do it! Just jump right in. Perhaps you are a wiz in the kitchen but just haven’t taken the time to make bread or rolls from scratch? Let today be the day to unleash your potential, to experiment, play, craft, and try out something that you’ve always wanted to learn. And above all, welcome the mistakes for they are the gatekeepers of divine creativity!

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