Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Sew it Goes

I've mentioned before that my sewing skills are virtually non-existent. To use the term "novice" to describe me would be a stretch. Up until this weekend, if you had a never-used sewing machine stored in your attic, then you had more sewing skills that I did. But folks, I am proud to say that I have turned that corner. I have entered the world of sewers and I couldn't be more excited.

Before I unveil my 'creations' (and believe me I'm using that term extremely loosely) I want to reiterate how basic my skills are. I had never even turned on a sewing machine. No one in my family sews, or if they do, I've never witnessed it. All the home economics classes I took throughout school focused solely on cooking, sewing wasn't even touched on. When I sat at my machine with the Instruction Manual in hand, I didn't know what to expect. The sewing terminology meant nothing to me so I really had to actually study the book before I could even turn the machine on. After a few minutes I could feel myself getting stressed. Thank goodness I turned to page 10 which was titled, "Connecting machine to power source." The first thing to pop in my head: Score! I already know how to plug stuff in! Self-esteem officially restored! But seriously, all the little things that most of you would consider basic, were totally new to me. Just winding and inserting the bobbin were major projects. So, I'm really *proud* to have a couple of silly little things to show you. So lets get right to it.

Silly little thing number one: Kitty Cat Catnip Pillow
Yes the seams are way crooked. Yes there are loose strings hanging all over the place. And yes, it may fall apart at any minute. But ya know what, the Kitty Cats don't mind. The shoddiness of the product makes it that much easier for them to reach the catnip. You have NO IDEA what it took for me to make this little piece of junk. Honest to god, I actually had to take my sewing machine apart not once, but twice, because I had installed something backwards and thread had gathered into a nice jammed up ball that was effectively clogging my machine. The fact that I didn't totally ruin my machine in the process is a miracle.

Silly little thing number two: Play Purse for the girl:

(This isn't the best picture---the girl has been a new kind of obnoxious lately. In case you can't tell, the part that looks like it's hanging from the bottom of the purse is actually her dress-up belt, not part of the purse.)

Obviously, I followed no pattern to make this. It's just some fabric sewn in a basic square purse shape. When I initially gave it to her, I hadn't sewn a handle on and was a bit scared to try--so it was more of a pouch. Here is the conversation that followed (sort of):

Me: Hey I made you a purse. It's not very big and virtually useless, but it took me two hours.

The Girl: Ooh. Thanks. It needs a handle now.

Great. Back to the machine. But honestly, I was getting myself worked up over nothing. I just grabbed a ribbon and sewed it on. It took two minutes. Again, obviously nothing fancy, but the seams are straight and it's not sloppily made---so I'm proud. I'm thinking of making a bunch more of these for my mom to put in her classrooms reward/treasure chest. (My mom is a pre-k teacher.) I think the little girls in her class would like this, plus it would give me a way to practice. I want to get more comfortable with the machine before I move on to something more difficult. But, for now, my sewing has reached a standstill. Thanks to my mishaps today, I'm completely out of thread.


Before I close out this post I wanted to show you something created by someone who can actually sew well. This Bird on a Wire Dress is my latest Etsy purchase. I got it at Earth Groovz, which is an Etsy shop I've purchased from before.

I love these dresses and I have my eye on the Hot Pink skulls one as well. I can't say enough nice things about this seller. She sewed up the dress and shipped it out the same day I ordered it. Oh, to have that kind of talent.


DysFUNctional Mom said...

I have NO sewing talent at all, so I admire your courage and efforts. Before long, you'll have your own etsy shop!

Nowheymama said...

I DO have an unused sewing machine in my attic! Well, unused by ME. My mom and sister have both borrowed it and used it with great success. You're inspiring me to dust it off.

Tammie said...

dysfunctional: thank you for your kind words. it really means a lot. it's difficult to teach yourself something new. :)

nowhey: getting a machine is half the battle. believe me, if i can do this so can you.

BloomingAlmond said...

Girl, you should see my 1st creation...lol you'd laugh so hard you'd pee in your pants... So shut up and go sew me a purse too! :P
It took me about 1 month to get a straight seam done right... LOL
Keep sewing you'll get better and better!

Tammie said...

blooming: heeheehee. you definitely made me feel better. thanks for the support. i found some more thread so i've been practicing all morning. the outcome still isn't perfect but im getting more comfortable with the machine. yay. im not even going to try to look at any patterns yet though.

Layrayski said...

Hi Tammie! I'm so proud of your sewing efforts! Its great! I'm in awe of your patience.

We had sewing at home economics class but its mostly sewing by hand. I've made a shorts we call porontong -- the long, kinda board shorts like shorts, by hand. I've always wanted to learn sewing by machine but I don't know if I have the patience for it.

Anyway, good luck on your future projects. We'll be waiting for your tales of sewing progress! =)

Maria Rose said...

Wow, what an inspiration. My whole family sews except me. I have always wanted to dive in.

Tammie said...

lyra: i cannot imagine sewing shorts by hand. im impressed. ive done a few things by hand, mostly mending ripped seams--nothing complex.

and thanks for the well wishes---i really do appreciate the support of my little blog community.

maria rose: so glad i could be of a little inspiration to you. its nice having you here. i just spent some time over at your beautifully written blog.

Posey said...

Good Job! I enjoy sewing also but haven't sat at the machine for quite a while.

Thanks for stopping by today!

Aleta said...

Sew? Me? I can make jewelry, but I can't sew a stitch to save my soul. Seriously. I tried taking a sewing class when I was little, but never did finish making the blouse. My grandmother has the skill - unbelievable - but I missed out on that gene.

I think you did a great job!

Tammie said...

thank you so much aleta.

do you sell your jewelry anywhere? sometimes i get on etsy and look at the handmade jewelry for hours.

Tammie said...

posey: thanks so much! and i know it sounds redundant and phony to keep thanking strangers, but the pats on the back keep me going. :)