I am looking above me toward the light and all I can see is a kaleidoscope of colors. There are outlines of shapes and patterns of every sort. The quilt top creating this magical vision is attached to wooden braces and suspended on rope from the ceiling while my mama and the women of the community took pride in quilting their "tiny stitches" and spoke of women’s things with words I could not yet comprehend.
That is probably my earliest memory of sewing. Both my mother and grandmother were exceptional seamstresses so from an early age, I played with the scraps creating dresses for my dolls and pets.
I was five or six when Mama finally let me use her old Adler machine with the knee pedal. That was a great running machine and would sew through anything- even fingers.
My first garment was a sleeveless top out of a flour sack and I couldn’t have been more proud of it. The very first time I wore it was also the last- after I spilled chocolate milk on it, creating a permanent stain.
By the time I was nine or ten, I was in full blown addiction and dumpster diving for fabric. My best friend was lucky enough to live next door to a sewing factory and I could find all sorts of beautiful treasures. I couldn’t believe (and still can’t) that someone would throw that away!
Today, I don’t sew as much as I “create”. After lusting over my sister’s embroidery machine for years, I finally broke down and bought one a few years back.
My excuse is that it is "therapy" to help me cope with my corporate job but with the investment I have in it at this point, I could be seeing Dr. Phil. I laugh about my fabric addiction that I always look through the peep hole before opening the door to make sure it isn't the camera crew from hoarders.
It is relaxing for me though and the joy of creating is very satisfying. It is also an excuse to hoard beautiful fabric, much of which I pet instead of using. It also makes my four year old grand daughter Dylan think I am the coolest person ever.
With my history of sewing, it shouldn’t be a surprise that was a big part of my book.
|Dylan as Princess Poppy troll|
A rare look at my sewing room and stash of pretties.
I especially love vintage reproductions