Sunday, July 31, 2016

The Sweet High of Crafty Success

I’m almost too excited to write a blog post right now, because I am riding the sweet high of crafty success. Today, my friends, I sewed. And not just timid little practice stitches on throw-away fabric…I sewed an entire canvas bag! This makes me incredibly happy and proud. And it’s all thanks to my friend Frankie, who offered me sewing lessons after reading last week’s blog post. I brought my machine over to her house today for Lesson 1. I figured she’d maybe show me a few things, then we’d spend most of the time chatting and faffing about like we usually do, but no. That woman was organized. She had a lesson plan, fabric at the ready, and a project all laid out for me. We got right to work, and under her laser-eyed tutelage and patient coaching, within a few hours I had completed a canvas tote bag! It was incredibly gratifying. Learning something new boosted my mood, and in spite of being intimidated by the machine, I found the act of sewing itself to be very meditative. It felt good to concentrate and work with my hands, and it felt even better to have a finished product at the end of my labor. I’ve griped about this plenty before, but I can spend an entire afternoon writing and come away feeling like I have nothing to show for it. With crafting, at least I can see the physical results of my labor—even if those physical results are the world’s jenkiest tote bag:

Oh, and guess what? Frankie said she could tell that when I get practiced at this, I am going to be a “meticulous seamstress.” Me, meticulous! Wee! Sorry. I’ll calm down in a bit, but right now I’m just really excited and want to sew all of the things.

I know I always complain about how I don't like music, but I went down a gospel choir You-tube rabbit hole recently thanks to a link on Frankly Curious's website, and now I really want to be in a gospel choir. The only barrier I see to this is that I can't sing…or dance, or really even sway convincingly. But I thought maybe I could just be way in the back and sort of mouth the words and hide behind the billowing gowns. I'm sure no one would notice an incredibly awkward 5’ 9”, bone-white redhead jerky-dancing on the risers and pretending to lip synch. Seriously though, once I get sewing mastered, I might actually consider singing lessons. I’ve always wanted to be able to sing, but I’m too terrified, and learning to sing in front of a teacher just seems too intimate and vulnerable. One new craft a time, Ms. Typist. You’re barely off your first tote bag.

I don’t have any fascinating Buddy stories from the week or much of note to talk about on the writing front (although I will say that I’ve been reading a thick tome of Wallace Steven’s poetry over the last few weeks, and while I find some of it inscrutable, I’m now officially in love with his work.) So I will leave you with this video of the Georgia Mass Choir singing “Bye and Bye”:

--Kristen McHenry

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