Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Why Susan Sews or Why "Susan Sews"

Someone asked me "Why do you sew?  I'm sure you could buy what you want just as inexpensively and it would be faster."  The answer is not to save money!  These days you can go to Walmart or wherever and buy a blouse, tee shirt, outfit, for less money than ever before.  Although if you shop discount chains or even your average mall shop these days you'll have to accept less than brilliant workmanship, and your clothes or household items will probably not last the season.  (I mean, does anyone out there match plaids anymore?  Evidently not in ready to wear!)

I sew because a.) I don't want to see the same outfit on every other grandma in the library/mall/restaurant, b.) because I care about how well-made my clothing is, and c.) because it's FUN to do it.

A part of my soul is very satisfied when I take a piece of flat fabric and make it into a jacket, pants,, or top, that will cover my decidely not flat bod.  I get a thrill when someone says "You MADE that??", although those who know me well now say "You made that, didn't you?" in that kind of know-it-all, you disgust me tone.  Sorry, yes, I probably did make it, and I'm glad it looks good enough that you don't think you'll find it in the mall somewhere!

My granddaughters love to bring me stuff from the stash with requests to make them a 'top with ruffles all the way around the front" or "pajamas, please".  In fact, I'm encouraging them to build their own stash.  Last week we went to the local quilt shop for their scrap bonanza.  Fill a bag and pay by the pound!  How cool is that, because you know someone else's scraps are always better than your own...  even the little one managed to pick up a pound of stash.  We came home and sorted and played.  E made a very cool collage with some of her stuff.  I needed something on the wall in the sewing studio!  And A made a 'blankie' -- well, she pinned some things together and I fastened it all down with zigzag stitches.  We were happy girls.

About three jobs back I worked with some engineers, who are pretty buttoned-down kind of people generally, and we took an interest in each other's hobbies.  They all got a kick out of my annual trek to Beaver Dam WI to Nancy Zieman's Sewing Weekend. Since Nancy is one of my heros, I told them how she started her mail order business from her basement.  They suggested that I should start a sewing business too... even decided it should be called Susan Sews.  They said the alliteration was a good sign that it would be successful!

Here's the thing about sewing for me:  I do it because I love the process.  I'm not going to be love having to finish everything I start, and I know I won't always love the clients, with their opinions and wishes.  Yes, they're paying, but hey, could you, would you, sew something with fabric you considered 'ugly'??  Not for me, too much like work.  And as for sewing and selling, well, I enjoy making one of something, sometimes I enjoy making a second one if it's different enough.  But I absolutely cannot keep making the same thing over and over, making many copies of the same item, even if they're different colors or fabrics.  Sorry, no bazaar sales or craft shows for me!

So I sew for the fun of it, for people I love, for my friends, because I can, to try something new, for all those things.  But could I sew because someone was paying me?  Probably could, but probably won't.

Susan sews for Susan.  End of story!

1 comment:

Thank you for your visit today!