Sewing Sounds

Just because you choose the dream, doesn’t mean it chooses you. There is a discovery process required as if a right of passage. Are you worthy enough for the desires of your heart to be realized? Why must we prove ourselves? Can it not be handed to us? Of course not. Crazy to admit it, but I never learned to sew. Mainly because I didn’t and still do not trust my own ability to create. I am not a classically trained designer. The machine freaks me out. I joke with Hana my neighbor as she teaches me how to pedal with the new machine. I claim that ‘butterfly’ and I are on our first date. Really just getting to know each other. I spend most of the evening fighting with the pedal and getting it locked up until I have to rethread the needle and start again. I get this feeling of I should have started a long time ago.

For someone who has spent a good chunk of ones life obsessed with fashion it is a bit ridiculous that I am only now getting behind the machine. There have been a few failed attempts and a machine in London that collected dust. Maybe I didn’t want it bad enough then or maybe I just wasn’t ready to really push myself. Maybe I just needed to learn to believe in myself. Hana teases me for huffing and puffing. We began at 8pm and eventually on my own at about midnight when Sara climbs the stairs to my studio. She takes a few photos and asks why I bought a manual machine, ‘wouldn’t it be more efficient to have an electric one’. I smile at my own frustration and tell her that I am not in a hurry to make a dress, I want to enjoy the process and reduce the adverse effects of making on the environment.

Maybe I am stubborn and a bit foolish, but I do not need to fill my fashion rails with a large number of dresses. I am more concerned with how and why we make it. Even more important I am enjoying the discovery process, not just the learning to make but also a bit more about the slow down to really see myself. I trip up yet again and have run out of thread. I continue moving the peddle and spinning the wheel. I can imagine my great grandmother on her sewing machine in the village many years ago. She used to make little dresses for me and my sister. Why are we so obsessed with speed, isn’t there beauty in delayed gratification? When I closed for the evening I sat on the floor in front of my little machine and said a little prayer giving thanks for all the blessings of the day. I put my hand on the wooden counter and said, ‘good night butterfly glad that we are finally getting to know one another’.

What are the things that you have always wanted to do? Can you begin just one today? Forget saying, ‘I always wanted….’. Just go do it. What are you waiting for? There is never enough time. You can excuse yourself out of living but the only person left disappointed in the end is you. Watch less tv, get off your phone, check less emails…anything that will release time back to you to explore new possibilities. Stay up late  doing something you may love.

Me held by the nurse and Grace by my great grandmother.

Me held by the nurse on the left and Grace by my great grandmother on the right.

Me wearing a dress made by my great grandmother in Indonesia.

Me wearing a dress made by my great grandmother in Indonesia.

More of her work. Grace on the right and me on the left with my funny shaped head.

More of her work. Grace on the right and me on the left with my funny shaped head.

Hear we go! Pedals away.

Here we go! Pedals away.

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