Sunday, March 6, 2011
The strands of life
I've been thinking a lot this last week about the stands of life - when I bought this fabric, I bought it solely because it reminded me of the colour my hair used to be. I then teamed it with some fur on the collar to what my hair is becoming.
Another reason I thought about the strands of life is how sometimes echos from the past can come into the present. One of the women I started my very first craft club with died in the Canterbury quake. This was more than 20 years ago, and I may never have even thought of her again had her death not been the result of such a catastrophic event. We worked together in a resort town, in the far backwaters of the South Island, and we were both working our student vacation cleaning hotel rooms. We were immediately set apart from the rest of the staff because we were students - further aggravated by the fact we didn't drink and were saving all our money! If word had got around that we also met to sew patchwork, do embroidery and knit we would have been mocked out of town.
I spent a year of my life in Christchurch and ended up in Auckland through the twists and turns of fate that all of us encounter in our lives - a decision to go here, do this work, date this person and marry that one. We are often blissfully unaware of what might have happened on the road not taken, the precariousness of life sheltered from us.
Such were the thoughts going through my head as I was making this dress, thinking about the things that have happened in my life from when my hair was one colour and what it is becoming as it changes to the next.
The other thing about it that reminds me a bit of life's journey is the huge number of mistakes, false steps, unpicking and recutting I had to do on it. Let me list them for you here
- recut front facing (forgot to lengthen after FBA)]
- sewed collar stand and collar and made a dreadful job of it, unpicked whole thing
- recut collar stand, threw out old collar and decided to use fur instead,
- recut and sewed new collar.
- recut front waistband - forgot that a 2 inch FBA is only for one side so had to add 4 inches to waist, grrr.
- let out one set of front pleats because miscalculated the difference between the top and bottom
- resewed invisible zipper as had twisted one side round the wrong way. grrr.
- recut one sleeve, lost it somewhere
- resewed one sleeve, put it in inside out
- ran out of thread and had to finish with black
- stuffed up the buttonholes, mercifully hidden by the buttons
Well, as you know, we do have to suffer for our art.
I was a bit worried that I wouldn't be able to wash the dress because the fur collar is attached, but then I though, "hey, it's BROWN, not like anyone's going to know."
I am in two minds about the fate of this dress - as is, I can tell you it does not look good. I am tossing up whether to literally cut my losses and severe it at the bodice to make a plain skirt or just to donate the whole thing to the Sally Army. At this stage I'm probably leaning towards the former so I can reuse the cute leather buttons.
Well, after all that work and all that frustration, a wadder.
That, as they say, is life.