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Today in My History

2000:  Theatre of the Mind
2001:  Blog, Blog, Blogging Along
2002:  In My Spare Time
2003:  A Family Affair
2004:  Off with their Heads
2005:  "The Kid"
Coming Home to a Place I'd Never Been Before
2007:  Right In Our Own Back Yard

2008: Party Central
 (Different) Brief Encounters

Funny Girl

Books Read in 2010
Updated: 8/11
Flying Carpet of Small Miracles"

Recipes for Cousins Day Drinks
(updated 3/17/10)


Shiloh from Bev Sykes on Vimeo.

On You Tube

Look at these Videos
Mitzi Gaynor said WHAT?

Spirit of '43
Ned's Video for Bri's 2nd birthday
No You Can't (John Boehner)
Jim Brochu closes NASDAQ
Stupid, Callous, Homophobic, Hateful Legislation

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20 August 2010

ProjectRunway.jpg (8398 bytes)It amazes me that I enjoy Project Runway so much.

As someone who is famous for my lack of prowess with a needle (I don't even sew buttons), the fact that I would sit week after week and watch talented designers make outrageous clothing...and then follow the show season after season, surprises even me.   Maybe it's that I enjoy people watching something that I would like to be able to do.

My mother was a very good seamstress.  I don't remember her sewing a lot, but everything she made was wonderful.  When our kids were little, she even took a tailoring class and made wonderful clothes for the kids, including a beautifully lined coat for Jeri.  I saved that coat to pass down to any granddaughter we might have and, of course, now I can't find it, just as I can no longer find the kids' favorite books, that I carefully put in a box and saved for our grandchildren.  Amazing that we never throw anything away in this house, but the things that I really, really intended to pass on to grandchildren are nowhere to be found.

When I was in high school, I took a sewing class.  The big project for the class was to make something that we would then wear at a fashion show.   I was very girly at the time and I chose a lovely summery dress that had an overskirt to it.  I don't remember what the basic dress looked like, but I liked the fact that you could take off the overskirt and make it reversible.  There was a pink pattern on one side and white on the other.

My teacher, Sister Mary Bernardone (who was a large woman, who moved slowly, and was famous for saying that the first thing she did each morning was to check the obituaries to find out if she was alive or not), was very excited about my choice of dress and eager to help me get it done for the fashion show.

I got the dress almost all finished and then, in turning the overskirt right side out, after sewing a seam, so that I could add the belt that would attach it to the dress, I managed to rip a long gash right down the front of the white material.  There was nothing to do to fix it in time, and so I remember ironing a patch on it, but of course it no longer could be reversed.  I remember Sister Mary Bernardone totally losing interest in my sewing after that and I never wore the dress again after the fashion show.

I still cringe when I think of that.

I actually bought a sewing machine when the kids started coming along and I even managed to sew a few outfits for them.  As I recall, they never fit right...and I remember the dolphin headpiece that I had to make for a ballet performance for Jeri ("parents will make costumes") which I sewed backwards, which I didn't realize until it was too late to change it.

My heart was in the right place, but I was just totally inept.  It was like the two sweaters I made for Walt in the very early days of our marriage when I was knitting tiny garments for Jeri.  I made a green sweater with a cable pattern down the front of it--and one sleeve longer than the other.  There was also a heavy sweater that was apparently like wearing a heater at all times.  He tried them both on and never wore them again (in fact, I think they may still be in a dresser drawer upstairs somewhere).

My big magnum opus, though was a quilt I made during a quilting class I decided to take (ever hopeful that I could find something I could do with a needle!)  I decided to make a Superman quilt for Ned, since it was the height of his Superman craze.  The teacher of the class was really excited about it because it would really be a standout.  I traced a six foot high poster of Superman that Ned had in his room and cut out all the body parts out of fabric that I appliqued on the quilt, including using black velvet for Superman's hair, so it would look more like hair than the rest of the parts of his body.

When time came to finish off the quilt, I mis-measured and cut it too narrow.  I had to add strips of fabric on each side of the Superman figure, which ruined the look that the teacher was hoping I would create.  Again, a teacher was disappointed in my inability to follow through, though Ned loved the quilt.

It was a quilt Christmas that year.  I made quilts for all the kids, Superman for Ned and the others each got quilts decorated with squares of their drawings, which I had ironed on from some special transfer paper.  I was very happy with how they turned out, though none of them was as fancy as Ned's.  (But each of those was at least the right width)

The last thing I ever made may have been a big quilt that I put together for the California leader of La Leche League.  I solicited squares from people all over the state, and I was the one to put it all together.  It actually turned out very well and I was pleased with it.

I guess if you're going to give up a craft that you have proven totally inept at doing, it's good to go out winners!


supermanquilt.jpg (84569 bytes)

This isn't the quilt I made, but it looked
similar to this--only not made quite as well!


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