2.21.2012

The Language of Sewing

Hems. Tension. Darts. Inset sleeves. Pleats. Notions1. A-line. Remnant. Basting (and not as in a Turkey!) Bias. Blind-stitching. Spool.  Tracing. Interfacing. Ripper (of which I have become very familiar with through the years!) Gather. Lining. Seams. Patterns. Pinking Shears.

All these words and terms are old friends of mine.  I have neglected them in the last few years because other things in life became a higher priority, not to mention lack of time.  I realize now that much of it was my own tendency to become easily distracted and enamored by all things new or different.

It's not that I didn't realize the value of knowing how to take up a hem, mend a tear, sew on a button, or even sew an entire garment.  No, it was more about eating up life as fast as I could because with every passing year I felt the hand of the Grim Reaper tapping me a little harder on the shoulder, and I wasn't going down before seeing and doing all I could.

Now that I have come full circle, and am on the homestretch towards that "undiscovered country", I reflect on the skills of my youth.  I cannot fathom producing dresses, blouses, skirts, etc. as I once did, but I do love knowing that I could, if I had to.

Sewing is like a riding a bicycle, and getting back on the wheel, bobbin, foot, and feed would be easy as pie.  Oh dear, I am really mixing my metaphors!

 1 - Speaking of notions (i.e., buttons, trim, zippers, etc.), my grandmother and mother were very practical, economical women.  When a garment became irreparable, you didn't simply throw it away.  First, you stripped it of anything useful - old buttons, zippers, hooks and eyes, appliques, even collars, lace or ribbon.  Anything that could be recycled was carefully removed and stored for possible future use.