Sarah O'Connor

Writer – Playwright – Cannot Save You From The Robot Apocalypse

I got a sewing machine for Christmas and with that a resolution for myself: that I would sew something new each month to make sure I used it and got better at sewing.

I’ve talking about wanting to learn to sew for the past few years. I have a few friends who are very talented at it both of whom make their own cosplays for conventions and one who also makes pouches and bags and clothes. A few years ago my sister and I made circle skirts with one of our friends because they’re a relatively easy thing to make and it was a cool experience making our own clothes.

My friend had a sewing machine, and my sister and I did too. It was our mom’s, I remember when she got really into sewing when we were ten or so and she made us a whole pile of things with her new sewing skills. We got pillow cases, night gowns (both of mine made from the same pink unicorn pattern), pants, a shirt and probably a few other things I’ve forgotten about. She loved sewing, but she ended up stopping it and I can’t really remember why. Maybe that was when she was first diagnosed with cancer, or maybe like so many hobbies it was one that just drifted away.

We kept the sewing machine when she died and when I brought it over to my friends house to make the circle skirts she and her mom helped us set it up, taught us how to thread and load a bobbin, how to feed the fabric through the machine, all of those important things.

But then something happened with my mom’s machine. In short, it broke and I don’t know the proper sewing jargon to describe what happened to it the only way I know how is to say that for a sewing machine to work you need the thread to come from the top of the machine and the bottom (the bobbin) and the thread was only coming from the top meaning none of the fabric was threading together. My friend’s mom was able to fix it for a bit, but it stopped working again and we had to use hers which was great of course, but here I was just getting into sewing and now I didn’t have a machine to use.

I debated looking for a place to get it fixed, but my mom’s machine was old and I couldn’t be sure that getting it fixed would be more expensive than just buying a new machine. But sewing machines aren’t cheap, and I couldn’t convince myself to buy one, so I lied to myself for a few years saying that at some point I would but a sewing machine but not yet. Not yet.

And then of course I got one for Christmas from my dad, though it was at my sister’s suggestion because she of course knew I wanted a machine but that I would never buy one for myself (sisters are good for that). And I’m excited about it, I’ve already made two pillow cases and I’m planning on making a tote bag next month and a backpack at some point this year. At some point I’d love to start making clothes for myself and I’m excited about all the possible things I can start creating.

I’m not really sure what the point of this blog post is. That I like sewing? That I’m excited to sew? I guess I’m wondering too what my mom would think, though I think she’d like that I was sewing. Sometimes with something like this, I wonder what it would be liked if she was still alive. If we were sewing together, what things she could teach me, what things we could make together.

But they aren’t really thoughts worth having, but they aren’t thoughts that can really be stopped either.

I think she’d be happy, I hope she is happy and I hope she is helping me even if I can’t see it. But I’m happy, and that’s important too.

(Picture of bird pillow and fox pillow case are my own and taken by me, fabric from Needlework.)


One thought on “Sew, A Needle Pulling Thread

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