Tuesday, August 21, 2007

ramblings from an iron who has lost her steam

So I was sitting on my porcelain throne contemplating the complexities of my kingdom (and reading this months Martha Stewart's Living magazine) and stumbled upon a little gem that made me smile and think of all of you.

"35 million" is followed by this little thread of sewing truth "The number of SEWING HOBBYISTS in the United States, up 17% from 2000, per a recent study by the Home Sewing Association." In a generation where buying clothes is cheaper than making them and the price of fabric is about the same as a night out. Sewing has moved from being a necessity to an hobby.

Not everyone knows how to sew anymore. It is a skill that has vanished like the 80's claw bangs hair-do (thank heavens) - but now it has gone from being something common to special and unique, like our club. No matter what brought us together, there is a deep bond that sewing somehow touches. The act is singular in nature (sewing machines aren't built for two) but we rejoice in each others successes, personal victories are won at each level of completion, and needs are met as we sit around chat, eat, (and sasss - right Christie?)

Who knows why sewing has this magic to it. It is just cloth and thread, but maybe it goes back farther then that and touches a memory central to who we are: watching mom mend a torn dress, standing next to grandma as she sews the bindings of a quilt together, (or to not be sexists) watch as Kevin (the only guy I know, and revere for his sewing talents) finishes up his latest creation. Maybe that is the answer... or maybe it is seeing the work that goes into making something for someone else.

I think, ultimately, it is serving someone else. Whether you make your apron as a gift for someone else or to cover your best Sunday dress as you make dinner for your family (and friends), giving your time to make cookies with a sweet child, or just cleaning your house - it's comes down to doing something for someone else and finding your greatest happiness as you give just a part of yourself away. I thought I had lost my apron making steam... but actually I found it. Through scraps of fabric I didn't think I could make anything out of - comes excitement and counting the days 'til apron night when I can reveal my latest creations... You ain't seen nothing yet, baby. Sew on!


The McMillans said...

I think it has something to do with how mundane our lives have become. We used to have to make things from scratch. Men used to farm all day long just to feed their children. Now they sit at a desk for the most part and recieve a check. We then go to the market and buy food. We are out of touch in a lot of ways of really using our skills to harvest something for others. We as a group have touched on one of the crucial elements that make human beings happy. """Creating""" Having made 4 aprons myself, I enjoy beginging with the purchasing of fabric, cutting out the patern, and watching it come to life with each stitch. Starting from the beginning and ending with an apron is tapping into a very integral part of the humans need to create.

I cannot wait to see your next creation. I will sit at the edge of my keyboard in anticipation.

Thanks for such a great entry!

Christie said...

I can't wait to see your new creations. Hopefully they will inspire me and I'll get my apron mojo back (I'm sure you are all holding your breath for that...no one needs more Christie sass).

I agree, I have many of those memories. I have to add a couple. 1. Waiting in anticipation as my grandma made me and my Cabbage Patch doll matching dresses... and 2. Watching apron-clad Maren and her sweet daughter Paige bust through my sicky-germ-infested house to bring me THE best chicken noodle soup ever created by woman (and yummy ice cream to make the medicine go down). Memories I hold dear.

Jill Manning said...

All weekend Ty's family would ask me what the fascination with aprons all about and while I had a hard time explaining it...it was love at first sight...you did it perfectly! The age of wearing aprons while darning socks, hanging laundry on the line, collecting eggs from the hen house and veggies from the garden are in the past and with just a tie of the apron strings we can be tied to those uniquely romantic days. On top of that, my mom would always tell us that if we are feeling down, the best way to snap out of it is to serve someone and we will feel better. It looks like making aprons for others is exactly what my mom was talking about!

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