Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Turtle power

Teenage mutant ninja turtles were rad.  So was the use of the word rad.  As kids, my older brother and I were desperately keen to be ninja turtles.  So much so older bro even dressed up as a TMNT on library day.

The moment the new sewhip magazine was delivered, the fate of a turtle was set.

Tragically for older bro, he is too old for stuffed toys, so the gift is for little bro (age 11).  He's still unawares of the turtle winging it's little way.

In practical terms, the pattern was easy to follow, the piece clear on where to join and how to piece it together.  Even how to stuff him to make sure his neck sits upright.  I diligently followed all of these steps, and have a slightly lumpy, top heavy turtle!  Even after fashioning a small tube to insert rice into the body, the weight of the head consistently tips him forward.

Tragically, our unnamed turtle is now referred to as the depressed turtle.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Why I learnt to sew

Male pattern boldness inspired me to think about why it was I learnt to sew...after a very unpromising start.....

Back in ancient history, when puffy vest were fashionable and walkmans the "must-have", I first encounted high school textiles.  My initial projects were not interesting, not creative, not well made.  One denim pencilcase, a tie-dyed apron and half made polyester skirt later.....I lead the discussion on how bloody sexist it was that we had to do textiles, and why wasn't wood-working on the compulsory course list at a girls school?

Not for another 5 years did I even think about fabric.  I'd moved to Melbourne for University, and was a very poor student.  During the cold winter, a pamplet arrived advertising a local community class on quilt-making.  Seizing the opportunity on saving money by not buying a new doona...I signed up for the classes.

After the first class I was hooked.  I made the ugliest patchwork square, but the community house lent me the sewing machine, and away I went frantically sewing.

I still have the first quilt I ever made, and it gets used everyday during winter.  While it certainly did not end up being cheaper than a doona - I've never needed to buy it!