Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Uplifting sewing advice.

This is the best sewing advice I have received to date, and I intend to apply it to my new ambition of sewing. This advice comes from the author of the Dress a Day blog, and she says:

"Eliminate the "shouldas" from your sewing life. Has a project descended into that abyss from which it shall never emerge? Write. It. Off. Don't let it hang around your sewing room like some Dickensian ghost. Give it away, cut it into quilt squares, mash it up for papermaking, hold an unfinished-object-swap with all your sewing friends, heck, throw it out or burn it if you have to -- I don't care what you do with it, but once you get to the point where thinking of it makes you feel guilty and self-flagellating, it is not a "unfinished project" but a curs├ęd albatross. Sewing is no longer something people need to do to survive on the frontier [if you ARE on the frontier, please ignore this part]; it's a FUN HOBBY. Vigorously expunge the parts that aren't fun. So you screwed up. So what? Bury the evidence, deny, deny, deny, and move ON."

I believe this advice is applicable to all parts of life. It is very important to stay positive, and more importantly to stay reasonable in your expectations of yourself and the projects and pleasures you pursue.

Further sage advice from Dress a Day concerning struggles:

"Redefine 'failure'. You didn't fail to make a skirt, you succeeded in learning how NOT to make a skirt! Go into every project, at least for the first few projects, with the goal of learning, and not with the goal of making something couture-level. Define success generously. If you got the machine threaded right, didn't sew through your finger, and the two pieces of fabric join up more or less evenly? You won. Do a victory lap."

So true. From here on out, my failures shall be redefined as successes in what NOT to do. When I bake a cake that is too dry, I succeeded in learning that my oven is too hot and I need to under temp it next time. When a sew a crooked seam, I succeeded in reminding myself to use my seam guide. All thinks in perspective, and I will be a perpetual success. Wheeeeeeee.


Liz said...

dear kate. umm, i actually have nothing relevant to say about the post, i just wanted to say i love blogs, and i love blogs about cooking. So here are some good ones as well:
- (for the cupcake lover in all of us. Seriously, millions of cupcakes)
- (okay, just for the squash blossom pizza that I had at this restaurant in SF...amazing)


Unknown said...

In counseling they call it "shoulding yourself" or "musterbating" when you say that you 'should' or 'must' do things. So that's my random tie-in for the day!