Today I read Sarah Somewhere’s post Overwhelmed about feeling, well overwhelmed of course. As I read down her points I realized I have felt overwhelmed for literally months! I haven’t been writing, exercising or eating properly. I have all the excuses in the world for feeling so unmotivated to write given that there has been 9 people in the house. I have predominately written in a house by myself or with only one other person or a hip cafe, a library or even a park. My sanity has been out the window with so many people. The last time I lived with this many people was in Afghanistan but that still was much quieter than my beautiful three nephews at 0630.
Inside voice is not something my nephews possess at 0630……. I do wonder if all kids are like that…hang on come to think of it they don’t possess inside voices at any time.
So how does one occupy their time when the insanity of lack of quiet infects my personal space!?
Sewing!! Yes I have been sewing.
Little hats, reusable sanitary napkins and a pair of yoga meditation pants! Ok before you back track to read, yes you did read sanitary napkins correctly. To Much Information Warning but after a miscarriage you bleed A LOT and can’t use anything…… well inside you. So after weeks of using chemical laden sanitary napkins I developed an aversion to them. Thus started the internet search for something better. After one Google search I found the light-bulb moment I was looking for in the form of a blog about cloth sanitary napkins.
While the first reaction maybe eeew, mine was! I quickly realized that I had to do something different because my bodies aversion to store brought hygiene products was causing far too much discomfort for this girl to handle. So many hours of pattern research, design, deconstructing, cutting, pining (including several hundred pins into my fingers) I finally sewed my first panty liners. In between this I also made a number of reversible bucket hats. These were of far greater success than the napkins even if I did get the elephant print upside down on the first go.
I ventured into the local drapery store to purchase some fabric when I saw they had beginners sewing classes! $10 later I am learning that my machine has a slow down switch on the foot pedal. Despite having the manual for my machine this is like the biggest light-bulb moment and I feel confident I can master (intermediately of course) my curve sewing oh and now that I know you need to snip the fabric around curves or it bunches up. Who knew? Apparently everybody that sews!
Six degrees of separation occurred at the sewing class. One of the other sewers was the mother of a women I used to play netball with. As she told me what she’s been doing over the last few years for some reason the green eyed monster almost ripped me in two. Working for an NGO in Mongolia, China and other distant lands I am yet to reach! Ok ok I know I have traveled to many distant lands but my travel gene is strong and when I hear of places I want to go I get jealous, not a charming thing to do but neither the less it happened.
But back to more nights of sewing and I created more hats (even sold two) and a few ‘normal’ flow napkins. I am now weening myself off store brought products. For reasons only known to my crazy subconscious I have purchased enough products to last what feels like a lifetime I am using a combination of the both. My growing frugal side can’t ration not using them up whilst my bodies aversion to them is begging me to just throw them out.
The sewing bug has apparently now fully trapped me. I am watching less Grey’s Anatomy re-runs and finding myself at 2200 in internet overload research mode. I am finding websites and amazing blogs about women and men sewing fantastic clothes and all sorts of sewing techniques. It is a technique that catches my attention and I attempt, note the use of the word attempt, bias binding to make the napkins look rather polished! Well it would seem that I am no where near ready for the world of bias binding… it rather looks like chicken scratching to be brutal honest! Guess I won’t be winning any awards for my sewing technique.
I did make a gift of five postpartum napkins for a friend who just had a beautiful little boy and her feedback was, ‘Girl they are brilliant and work perfectly. I just rise them and wash them with the nappies!’ So I am loving that my sewing adventures are helping others.
Perhaps my best achievement, so far, is sewing a rather funky looking pair of hybrid yoga/meditation/harem pants without a pattern !!! That is right I didn’t have a pattern but I looked at a pair of harem pants I have from Morocco and figured I could work out how to make a pair. I measured, cut, and got it wrong DAMN IT! So I then sewed away and low and behold they are almost perfect. The fisherman’s pants style top could be 10cm shorter, I should have used backing for the waist tie, the colors and pattern could have been less bold but they are still perfect!!!
Sewing however has kept me from facing the fact I am feeling extremely financial insecure. My writing work has all but dried up and I haven’t felt passionate enough to search out more. I send out resumes for jobs I don’t actually want and get the lovely rejection email or no feedback at all. Given I don’t actually want these jobs I am fast wasting my time and energy applying for them. I set up an Etsy shop for my sewing but have been crippled by fear to open it, I have a Facebook page ready to launch as well but working out the pricing scheme is harder than I expected! Don’t want to charge too much or too little so I have information paralysis.
For now my sewing is keeping my sane, well as sane as I ever am, and I am thoroughly enjoying the creative process. Who knows maybe this week will be the week I finish the pricing chart and get my store up and running! Oh and I have to make a prototype yoga mat bag!! Good times!
Has sewing ever been your key to sanity?