Sunday, November 7, 2010

Sewing is Not Hereditary (last call)

I am very happy to be a Guest Artist at the Gingersnap Creations challenge blog this month, but I have to confess that I was a bit scared when Ali told me that this month's theme would be "sewing and fashion." Because, as many of my blog friends know, I don't sew.  I don't own a sewing machine.  I don't stitch on layouts or use fabric.  I've tried, but it's really not my thing.  I blame 7th grade Home Economics, which I  all-but failed when I couldn't gather the yolk or put a zipper into my sewing project (a smock; it was 1973 after all).  But I've jumped in with the challenges, and I'm having a ball.  My submission for "notions" will be up on Wednesday, and it's very me.
Meanwhile, I've used this opportunity and Shimelle's prompt on using a thesaurus to reflect on the fact that it's a shame I can't stitch because sewing is definitely something that runs in my family.  I created today's art journal page about it. Here's the journaling:
"I come from a long line of seamstresses and needleworkers.  My Tia Lupe could tailor, stitch, seam and sew with the best of them, creating an endless succession of matching dresses for her nieces.  My Grandmother Ontiveros crocheted thousands of granny squares for hundreds of quilts, tatted lace doilies and embroidered multitudes of pillowcases and table cloths.  My sisters are also quite handy. Tricia made her own wedding dress; Cordelia makes quilts.  My daughter Clara even got into the act last summer, piecing a quilt and constructing pillowcases and purses. Me, not so much.  I all-but failed home economics in Jr. High because I couldn't gather the yolk or put in the zipper on my project (a smock; it was 1973, afterall). I have come to the sad conclusion that sewing is not hereditary."
Do you sew?  Did you learn from your family?  Are you passing it on?
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Last call to enter the friendship blog hop give-away! I'll be drawing the winner tonight (Sunday) at 9:00 p.m. California time and will post the winner about noon on Monday.

16 comments:

scrappyjacky said...

My mum was a great seamstress.... and made most of our clothes when I was a child....and although I do do some decorative stitching..... the 'utilitarian' sewing gene has definately not been inherited.... family members can wait weeks [even months] for seams to be sewn back up or buttons reapplied...though the suggestion of doing it themselves seem to fall on deaf ears!!

alexa said...

I too come from a long line of seamstresses and embroiderers, and feel similarly challenged! Hoping I will get to it one day, so as not to let the family line die out ...

laurie b said...

my mom and grandma sewed a bit so i did learn from them. i can't sew anything "real" (like clothing) but i love playing around with the sewing machine. i like how you incorporated sewing into a page about how you don't sew. :-)

Amy said...

Yes, the line has all but stopped with me too! My maternal grandmother sounds like your grandmother Ontiveros - I struggle with elasticised shorts and simple book bags ;-)

helena said...

sewing and embroidery were my craft of choice through childhood - learnt from my mother. My grandmother was a great knitter and my grandfather taught me to crochet lace.

Funnily I don't use sewing or fibre on my physical pages at all.

The Scrappy Tree said...

There's a bit of embroidery lurking in my past but that's about it! Have to admit to still asking my mum or nan to stitch things up for me (oh the shame!!)
Another beautiful page Rinda :) what kind of pen do you use for your journaling?
Gayle xx

Sian said...

My Grandma actually was a machinist in a shirt making factory and I think about her every time I sew a straight seam on my machine. But I have a guilty secret - I cannot change a bobbin to save my life. I get DH to do it! So give it a go - you don't have to be able to do all of it!

Denise said...

I am certainly no seamstress either!oh how I wish I was - I just always end up lop sided or something like that! your blog hop journal page was wonderful - I love the colour combination xx

Lizzie said...

Ah, I had real problems in school, with my sewing classes. That is, until I turned 14... then I suddenly found I could do it after all. The teacher was so very encouraging and kind, which I am sure was helpful (she was also amazingly sarcastic and it wasn't until Parents' Evening, when she gave me a pep-talk, that I stopped being scared of her!).
I didn't take the exam for Fashion & Textiles, as I was feeling so overloaded with subjects that I dropped out of 2 (I still got 10 "O" levels in the end!) and F&T was one of them; but I carried on in 6th Form, with the F&T option for one term and carried on going to the sewing club in my lunch-hours. It was great to be able to make my own clothes, as we were always broke at home...
When I had my first home, I sewed all the curtains, a bed set, table cloth and napkins...
Funny that I rarely use my sewing machine now, but I really should.

I sympathise with anyone who finds sewing difficult though; we can not all be good at it - and there are a number of things I don't do very well (like cleaning!). Even though I am a creative & artistic person, I can't do all creative things equally - so don't be discouraged about it Rinda, I don't "do" Art Journalling, but you are fabulous at it!

Nancy Y said...

Rinda, my junior high home ec experience was almost identical to yours (just couple years earlier)! My Mom had to finish putting my zipper in! All the other girls had collars and sleeves and nice finished projects and were happy to wear them in the end of the year fashion show... I volunteered to bake the cookies! Baking is much more my strong suite! My joke is that the only thing I learned to do in the sewing portion of home ec was swear at the machine!

JO SOWERBY said...

i come from a mother of all seamstresses. she is fully trained and everything. she taught me to cut out, pin, tack, make flat seams, knothces, match knotches, use tailors chalk, make invisible seam, knit sort of, and i taught myself to crochet. i also taught her about counted cross stitch. i tried to teach my sister to knit and she did make a scarf but it is a slightly funny shape i have to say.
Jo xxxx

ComfyMom~Stacey said...

My grandmothers quilted and sewed doll clothes & crocheted & taught me to do all those things. I'm hopeless at sewing patterns but I can make a strip pieced quilt and crochet. My sons have both learned basic sewing stitches to fix buttons & hem pants.

My mom can't sew or crochet or anything like that.

scrapchick said...

Love the page and the journaling! I can sew a bit but nothing like my Mom,
Grandma or Great Grandmother. :)

Karen said...

My mother was a beautiful seamstress, and I learned to sew in 4-H at age 10 and actually sewed for competitions until I was a senior in high school. I used to make lots of clothes for me and the family as well as gifts, but about 10 years ago I realized it was cheaper to buy the clothes than it was to make them---to say nothing of counting my time. I keep my sewing machine up and do alterations and sewing on my papercraft projects, but rarely make anything from fabric.

Melissa said...

Loved reading your journaling. Both my grandmothers, my mother and my sister are excellent seamstresses. I have clothes, quilts, afghans, and tons of other things they've made. I only own a sewing machine because I inherited Grandma's a few years ago - it's in the closet (somewhere). I tell everyone they are very talented, but I am the smart, pretty one. LOL

Danielle said...

beautiful journaling!