Thursday, December 20, 2012

Me = Someone

My son had a dentist appointment at 8:00 yesterday morning. He opted for sedation dentistry which meant someone had to drive him plus he has type 1 diabetes which meant someone had to monitor that aspect with more knowledge than the staff had. Me = someone. I spent three hours in the waiting room, mostly stitching on the purse, and then I came home and spent most of the day stitching on the purse - until 8:00 at night when I decided that twelve hours was enough and I could quit which...

... somewhat coincided with both finishing the lining and my friend calling to say she couldn't make our lunch date tomorrow. I'd been telling anyone who asked that it would take an act of God for me to be finished on time and apparently acts of God come in the shape of being asked to babysit your grandson. We've rescheduled for coffee tonight and - LOL - maybe I'll be done. We'll see.

After researching how to attach leather handles, I opted to sew by machine first and will add hand stitching with pearl cotton over top for a thicker, more finished look.

With the zipper, I reverted to the method most frequently used in my purses which is slicing across the entire length, wrapping each edge with fabric, and then top stitching the wrapped edge to the zipper. It's neat and easy. The only drawback is it creates more bulk in the seams that - depending on how the purse is structured - can be an issue although a few wacks with the hammer usually flattens things out.

Marcy Tilton is the featured artist in the spring 2005 issue of Quilting Arts Magazine. In the article, she notes that it takes four to six months to complete a new pattern design. I'd recently reread the article for another purpose only that line stayed with me. I realized I'm spending too much time on each purse figuring out how to put it together even though they have similar shapes and results. It seems to me that I'd be better off developing some standardized "recipes" so my focus can be on the colors and textures and interactions. When I thought about why this happens, I think it's in part because I predominately work with a quilted surface of some sort. I enjoy creating them - particularly the layering and the threadwork - and even so perhaps it's time for me to step out of that quilted box and look at other options - in the new year - right now the purse and I are through the hating each other stage and moving toward the finish line.

The hand work was red over red stitching around each motif after outlining them in gold thread. Each step gave the motif more presence and energy.  Beading would too only these are along the bottom of the bag so I'm not sure beading is necessary. We'll see when all the parts are in place.

The lining is complete and read to insert. The front is done except for the side seams. I've determined how to finish the top edge and add the zipper. This morning's focus is the flap. Once that is complete and stitched in place, I can shape the bag, add the feet and snap, insert the lining, and move to finished. YEAH.

I'm reading The View From The Studio Door by Ted Orland. At one point, he talks about how there are fewer artists in today's world and about how art making is becoming more and more about a (mostly unengaged) audience. I'd quote the actual phrase but it'd take too long to find it right now and - as you know - I'm on a deadline. It intrigued me that in three hours of sitting and stitching in a public waiting room with a large staff of predominately young - under thirty - women, not a single person inquired about what I was doing. I found that both unusual and somewhat sad. There are so many fabulous aspects to being a maker, the least of which is the finished object.

Talk soon - Myrna

Grateful - shifting deadlines


  1. That is sad, that no one asked about what you were doing with your stitchery... I find that I have a different experience, that often people approach me in public and ask about my everpresent handwork. Not as much in medical settings as elsewhere though. It is true that I do live in Portland, which is a bit more maker-friendly than some places though.

    I think that developing TNT patterns, whether for clothing or other artifacts (like purses) is a way to allow our creative selves to have a ground on which to dance, rather than having to conjure up the ground first each time...

    1. Portland... sigh... I'm coming back in June to shop at Fabric Depot and perhaps a few other places. Can't wait.

      The longer I sew the more value I see in the "blank canvas" of TNT patterns.

  2. Can't believe no one had a sticky at what you were up to! Me, seeing someone knitting, sewing, or crafting is an open door to start up a conversation.
    Bag is coming together perfectly, and with that little extra time up your sleeve you will soon have this project 'in-the-bag!'

    1. I'm not programmed to walk by someone working on something interesting. It just doesn't happen. I'm so darn nosey that I just have to know what they're doing Starts all kinds of conversations though.

      I'm done. And completely bagged. Details tomorrow.


Thanks for commenting. I appreciate the feedback and the creative conversation.