Sunday, 21 April 2013

Sewing confidence...

Sewing intimidates me. A bit less with each project I make, because it proves I can do it without breaking my machine or stitching through a finger. I also am fortunate to have some dear friends who kindly hold my hand, offer encouragement and don’t laugh at me when I ask silly questions.
I first learned to sew, as I’m sure most of you have, when I was young, at my grandmother’s knee, supplemented with a few basic lessons in home economics at school. Decades later and I became interested again, but it seemed so complicated – the machine, the space needed, the noise, all the teeny bits of equipment...I’m accustomed to a hook and some yarn!
I was “forced” into sewing just over a year ago, when I needed to line a crochet bag I made as a gift. I loved making this bag, from the fantastic Cute n’ Easy Crochet by Nicki Trench, which everyone learning to crochet should own. But the lining. A simple, plain calico – the horror! Scissors! I was afraid to even make one cut. (Perhaps when we’re relatively skilled at one craft, we’re very keen to try other ones, but the complete lack of knowledge leaves us a bit perplexed? Hmmm, there must be a branch of psychology that studies this...)
My lovely friend Jooles came to my rescue, sewing goddess that she is, and calmly coached me throughout the measuring, cutting, pinning and sewing process. The first depression of the foot pedal...Well, here’s the result, complete with a pocket, warmly accepted and appreciated by the gift recipient

And today I get to show off my sewing progress by sharing this!

Ta-dah! Remember the fabric bundle from my last post? This is a cushion cover for my Grandma’s sewing room. She is my inspiration and my role model, and her sewing skills...well, she is Yoda and I am a very young Luke Skywalker.

Here's the back of the cushion cover...

Making this made me happy. I am gaining enough confidence now that I enjoy the process of sewing. I like the anticipation of setting up the machine (I don’t need to consult the instruction book every time I have to thread the needle). I can measure and cut the fabric without worrying I’m going to shred a beautiful fat quarter.

And I even brainstormed some embellishments!

(Here I confess that my creative side took over to save the inexperienced seamstress who twice tried to perfectly line up all the patches, but two stubborn ones refused to stand absolutely straight together. So I used the tape measure ribbon to cover up the seams. The buttons just seemed to bring it all together quite nicely.)
I’m sure this all seems quite daft to you experienced sewing folks out there, but I do hope you can relate a bit, and recognise and appreciate your own talents and confidence. And those of you who are in the same boat as me know you’re not alone!
Happy crafting!
Chrissie x


  1. Now you've got the bug there'll be no stopping you - this week a cushion cover next week a ball gown! Well done on your makes they look fab x Jane

  2. Oh My Goodness ..... your Grandma is going to be bowled over with that glorious cushion cover, you may have used the tape measure ribbon to hide a tricky join but really, it looks all the better for it, who would ever guess? (well we all know here but i will keep it a secret!) beautiful!
    love jooles xxx

  3. P.S you made me blush ;o)

  4. I love the cushion cover you made, it's fab, well done. I'm also loving your crochet bag, I adore that Nicki Trench book and have plans to make everything in it!
    M x

  5. Great effort! It's the best way to start, trying out smaller projects and then moving on to bigger ones. I totally know what you mean about not wanting to cut the beautiful material in case it all goes wrong!

  6. I used a sewing machine a lot when I was younger, made all my children's clothes, but after many years without one I now find it quite daunting! Good job I have talented daughters to carry on the family sewing tradition!
    Angie x

  7. I think the measuring tape detail adds to the cushion so beautifully! Your Grandmother is going to be thrilled with this!

  8. Your grandma is going to be thrilled - so thoughtful and super cute too! X x

  9. Thank you everyone for your kind comments! It is so encouraging! Cx

  10. Love your new makes.....the fabrics in the cushion cover are great! How lovely to have Jooles to help too :)
    Helen x

    1. Thank you Helen! Truth be told, I'm working my way up to sewing a very special bunny, with a very special pattern... ;-) thank you for visiting! Chrissie x