I do like a good day out. It's always great to have a change of scenery, go somewhere different and do something new. Although I've been to the knitting and stitching show at Olympia a few years in a row with my "Crazy Crafter friend" , it's only the last few years that we have decided to try some of the taster classes that they've had on offer. Last year we had a go at Swiss embroidery (aka chicken scratch?) and this year we signed ourselves up for a dressmaking class.... to have a go at making a skirt....
The last time I did something like that was when I was about 14.... I remember making a skirt at school that was far too small for me and that I never ever wore. I hate to be beaten by a foiled attempt, so I thought it was time to give it another go and see if I could do any better. My buddy and I always enjoy a good project (or two) and so we headed off for our day out with high hopes of coming away with a lovely new article of clothing to wear.
We had a little bit of time before our class began, so we first looked around the place, admiring all the craft supplies on the varying stalls and being tempted to buy everything to take home.
We were very restrained though and only splurged on a few small items like my multiple pom pom maker that I am going to use to make a sensory mat for Heni .....like the one we saw here...
We also came away with some other fun ideas of thing to make and an item for the "bucket list" ...for another sanity space project in the future perhaps?!... (a course on freehand machine embroidery applique by Katie Essam, that is apparently run only a few miles away from where we live)....
We had sent our measurements to the lady who was running the course a few weeks in advance, so that all the pattern cutting could be done ahead of time and students could just show up and spend the class time sewing the garment together.
We were excited to get to our machines... (a super smooth Janome CXL301) which made my own clunky machine at home seem like a vintage piece of equipment. We were excited to open up our packages and get going as soon as possible..... but unfortunately the teacher who we were meant to have was sick, and the lady who stepped in last minute hadn't be given the measurements of everyone!
We were both really disappointed to find that our pre-cut patterns didn't quite look the right size! Mine was enormous and the Crazy Crafter's was too small : (
First stage was putting in an invisible zip... (my first ever) ..... and trying to take a few sneaky inches out of my seam to make the skirt a wee bit smaller!
It was surprising how quick the three hours class whizzed by. At the end we had both reached the stage of putting on a waist band (and I had put in a few darts too!) but we had not finished any hemming.... we came to the realization that we would now have to take our skirts home to finish them off ourselves... unsupervised!
Once home I still felt that the skirt was far too big and had a go at unpicking the stitching on the waist band and putting in some larger darts. I took in the side seems a little here and a little there.... and then sewed the waist band back on again only to find that the zip was somehow smaller and I couldn't quite fit in it anymore!
It appeared that the more I tried to correct my mistakes the more wrong it seemed to go. Even the stitch tension was different on my machine that on the one I had used in class. Needless to say, I eventually scrapped the skirt and it now sits on my pile of material for making in to quilting squares!
It was yet another disastrous attempt at making a skirt... BUT It was a fun day out with my lovely friend and there is always something that I can learn from my poor outcomes.
1... "Failure is the opportunity to begin again more intelligently" Henry Ford (this one resonates!)
2... Mistakes are the proof that your are trying.
3... Better and "oops" than a "what if"?
4... Strive for progress not perfection.
5... Admit it we've all been there!?
6... It doesn't matter what or how you do if you have a friend to do it with.
7... All you need is a friend ... oh and perhaps some skills and a new sewing machine of course!
Today I'd like to encourage you to find some sanity space and go learn something new. Don't be afraid of making mistakes. Why not go do it with a friend ....that way, if you do make them....you'll still be sure to have a great time.