How to make a shirt: an interpretation

Step 1: Order an Oliver + S pattern and wait for it to be delivered to your door.

Step 2: Once delivered, open package, gather materials, and start reading the instructions. Read that the pattern is for beginners. Put everything on your sewing table and ignore for two weeks.

Step 3: Get out craft paper and trace pattern onto paper.  Cut out patterns.  Laugh at how easy this will be.

Step 4: Trace patterns onto fabric.  Cut out tracings.  Forget to transfer most marks onto fabric. Go to bed.

Step 5: Begin following instructions.  Understand life and why it exists.  All is well.  Get halfway done.  Go to bed.

Step 6: Begin sleeve construction.  Curse all women in your family for not teaching you how to sew.  Remember that maternal grandmother did try.  Curse yourself for playing with Barbies instead.

Step 7: Text friends.  Hold seam ripper.  Stare at fabric wad.  Go to bed.

Step 8: Continue sleeve construction.  Find sewing forums and beg for help.  Click “refresh” button waiting for answers. Give up.  Go to bed.

Step 9:  Summon up all patience and keep following instructions. Start making up your own version of a shirt.  Begin asking self deep questions about what the essence of a shirt is, really.

Step 10:  Ignore instructions.  Keep sewing.  Eat pizza.  Sew on buttons.  You may feel cracked out but you made a shirt!  High-five self til you fall asleep.


failures (and exceptions)

Almost immediately after telling the universe that I wouldn’t be buying anything  this month, things broke.  And other things presented themselves.  And then  we….well, we bought a car.  I also confess to buying a pastry blender while antiquing in Indiana.  And fabric. But!  I did notice something.  When I was able to leave the house alone yesterday, I went straight for shopping.  Apparently I don’t know what else to do with time away from the house.  So a new goal (in addition to understanding the stock market, learning Russian, and conquering gardening…) is to find things to do that don’t involve money.  Enter: our new car.  We now have two cars, which means I can leave the house!  This is huge.  I have been planning so many visits to friends and strawberry patches and swingsets.  Huge.

   Other than car buying, I have been sewing.  Lotsa sewing at night this week, just like I said I would (whoa how I love to say things and then actually do them).  Night 1, I made the baby some shorts (jams?).  Night 2, a floor pillow.  Night 3, I cut out a gatrillion pattern pieces which I used last night to start a top for baby.  This top, depending on the outcome, could be his birthday shirt.

   If your brain has a hole where your organization skills should be (like me) you should try this: get a 3-ring binder.  I swear this is the answer to everything.  Get one for every room in your house.  Kitchen?  Binder for recipes.  Office?  Binder for bills.  Studio?  Binder for sewing patterns.  I bet even the bathroom could have one for…something.  Er.  I’ll have to think about that one.

the hours

With a quickness, I am just here to state that I will be taking an hour each day (M-F) this week to create things for a certain baby of mine.  You will probably not be doing that exact thing (although he would certainly love any little thing you made him, especially if it involves wheels or hairbrushes), but you may want to visit places where sewing happens more frequently such as this one that taught me how to make pants or over here where I go for unpretentious inspiration.  Do you find yourself making things during the summer?  Clothes, pies, COLD DRINKS?!

And if you’re not into sewing, well.  Maybe you should remind yourself how to kiss with passion!  It’s all about helping you out over here, what can I say.  I’m here for you.

Here’s a brand new week of heat and cicadas.  I know summer’s just beginning, but I find crazy romance in the stick to yourselfness of it.  It’s also a great excuse to sit inside and eat cherries while catching up on Nurse Jackie, say.  OKAY and maybe mom’s lasagna and strawberry pie entered my belly several times as well. Whatever.  Have a good Monday, y’all!