Friday, September 2, 2011

A Needle Pulling Thread & Lessons on Perfection

Tonight's post is brought to you a little later than usual due to an extended session in sewing class.

Yeah, me sewing. Imagine that will ya?

I have to admit, it hasn't been that bad. As I said last week I've had terrible images pop into my mind of past (and failed) attempts at sewing. What ever made me want to take it up again?

Well, one reason is that even if you completely, totally, irrevocably stink at something that is no excuse to give up on it. (Or yourself for that matter.) This is the entire logic behind most of what I do. I am not one of those fortunate few who is an instant prodigy. All through school the sound you would hear in the classroom over was me banging my head against the wall trying to remember how to FOIL in Algebra class. Then there was Geometry, but we'll save that bit of childhood trauma for another time.

For the past two Thursdays, I've been working one-on-one with a wonderful woman named Gayle. She's been incredibly patient with me, and not only that she is hilarious and fun to work with. Even being in a poorly lit, dingy classroom in the otherwise empty art guild doesn't damper our spirits.

What also helps is that she is very anti-perfectionism. We see eye to eye on this, because I personally believe Perfection to be a mental disease. One that I manage to not suffer from amazingly enough.

One of the first things she told me when I sat down in front of the sewing machine was, "Don't worry. You're going to make mistakes, because that's the only way you'll learn. And that's the only way I'll teach you. There's no f*ck-up we can't undo. Just remember, 'It's only sewing'."

I am happy to report that the majority of what one needs to know for sewing, and for a lot of creative work, is the use and application of good old common sense. The simplest rules apply: Measure twice, cut once; Always have the seam ripper handy; Don't forget to put your foot down; Go backwards if necessary; Try to keep looking ahead; There's no need to pull, push, or force it- just gently guide it along, and if all else fails read the directions.

Good advice for those of us who are suffering from uncooperative characters or an unsupportive cast of any kind, these past several weeks. Don't forget- "It's only writing."

As for how I am doing in the course? Weell, I guess you could say I'm doing sew-sew. ;)


  1. Great post! Love, love, love.

    I especially love the simple rules of creative work.

  2. Thanks! :D
    Yeah, it's pretty amazing how we can draw parallels between creative things, isn't it?