Thursday, June 10

Practice, practice, practice

Yesterday I was trying some new sewing techniques. I came home after doing my coffee biz for the day, turned on This American Life via podcast, and got to it. I had read a tutorial about a month ago about bags with kiss clasps and in it, I learned some easy tips for turning out bags and straight stitching. My goal was to practice those easy tips, and hope it made my straight stitches more straight and crisp.

About an hour an a half later, and with Nancy Pearl's voice (via her podcast Book Lust with Nancy Pearl) I was angry and frustrated. I couldn't remember how to do it! I stitched and seamed ripped. I stitched and seam ripped. I turned the fabric, tried from different angles, and I still couldn't get what I wanted in the outcome. (I refuse to tell you what I was doing, as it is so embarrassing, and now, irritatingly simple.) Not only could I not get it on my own, but I just could not bring myself to go back to the website and re-read the directions, which as you are saying in your head, would have saved me time and the eye strength to stare at all of those stitches I yanked out. Who was this crazed girl at her Bernina?!

Then Dan came home. IPod plugged into his ears, absolutly dashing in his work clothes and new haircut, and happy as can be. He unplugs, drops his gear, and breathes in the cool air of our oasis of an air conditioner. I take his lead, and I step away from my machine and the devil fabric.

We chat about the cases he is involved in, with as much detail as he can, without giving any details. Honestly, I'm half listening because with the wind of the air conditioner going past my ears (I'm directly in front of it as Dan moves to get some iced coffee), and my mind still reeling from the fabric gauntlet in the other room, I only hear Dan's low voice in mumbles.

While he's still still talking about what he's going to do for his cases, I move to my computer and look up the website with the tutorial. Now I just want to get it over with.

Dan takes a drag from his cigarette, notices what I can only imagine is a scary expression on my face, and asks what I'm working on. I tell him I re-reading a tutorial. He, still happy with post-work euphoria, tells me, "Practice, practice, practice!" in a sing-song way. Poor Dan. He has no idea this was the exact wrong thing to say. I glare and fire back, "I have been practicing all goddamn afternoon. So please, just ..." and I made a 'zip it' motion with my hand. He closes his mouth, grabs his computer, and heads off to the bedroom without another word.

Later I apologize. He accepts. All is well. (Side note: today while recounting yesterday's events, he says, "I did good! You said zip it and I zipped it!")

All that is to say, today some cool things happened. I swallowed my pride, read the tutorial, and made some stuff. Here's a peek.

1) A clutch made with utterly fantastic flame/transparent butterfly wing/orange and purple goodness. It fits my cell phone and check book perfectly, side-by-side, with room for lipstick on the side. 2) It's a bit large for a wrist-let bag, so I'm thinking this is more of a cosmetics bag. Or perhaps an art supply bag. It also happens to be the first zipper I've ever sewn, and I proudly showed it off to Dan as he came home today.


  1. I love the "re-model" that you have going on here! The water on the window with the mountain makes me think of AK and PDX!

  2. I can't rearrange the apartment, so I "rearrange" my profile. I hope people don't get confused.


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