Friday, January 6, 2012

Where's my camera??

OK, now that I'm getting the hang of this blog stuff, I want to start adding some photos to my posts. 

Like this.

or maybe something else.

Like a picture of one of my projects or something.  BUT I can't seem to get the photos in my iPhone to go to my computer, and I can't find my real camera!  Sad, but true... technology seems to be wagging its finger at me recently. 

I have five voicemails on my phone, but what I thought was my password to voicemail evidently isn't my password.  I have instructions to fix that.  Hopefully I'll get that done soon.  Then I can work on getting the phone to communicate with my email account.  But on the bright side, I do know how to text. 

The camera is another story.  It takes lovely pictures, and I have the uploading process to the computer down pat.  But I put it somewhere before the holidays.  I did that because I was tired of uploading pictures only to find that 60% of them were of toys or the four-year-old's bare feet or a bug on the sidewalk.  Yes, I know they can be deleted and they don't cost anything to save, but seriously, she's a mad photographer when she gets started!!  I have a picture of a bowl of Bugles.  Yep, the snack food.  And plastic dinosaurs and stuffed dogs.  Cute but not desirable for blogging purposes.

So hopefully this weekend I can find the camera and start showing off some of my projects.

Stay tuned!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Product or Process?

Are you a product person or a process person??  How do you know which one you are?

By my definition, a product person is one who will not necessarily start a new project while the last project is incomplete.  This type of person likes to see a finished item put to use.  They would be very happy owning one pair of knitting needles because they would not dream of starting a second scarf in a different color while the first scarf is still being knitted! 

On the other hand, the process person is one who enjoys part of all of the process of any craft.  To use a knitting example, the process person may be happiest picking out patterns and buying yarn.  Maybe they have even started projects.  They may love learning new stitches, or the way the project feels rolled up in their lap during the knitting.  But they may be proud owners of 76% of a sweater in blue and 22% of a pair of red socks.

You can usually tell at a glance which person you're dealing with... baskets of yarn overflowing in several rooms, needles stuck into skeins on the coffee table?  Process.  One carefully loaded knitting bag next to the favorite chair?  Project.

I am a process person.  I freely admit that my stash of fabric, yarn, embroidery floss, craft supplies, exceeds the conceivable number of projects I can do in my lifetime.  But as someone once said if his own wife's works in process, it's a lovely pile of stuff and could be considered decorative in some circles.

My cousin Amy is a project person.  I piece a quilt top, fold it, and ponder its beauty.  Amy will make the quilt sandwich, machine quilt it over the weekend, bind and label it like lightning!  Her UFO pile is almost non-existent!! 

Did I mention that process people and project people don't understand each other??  Like Venus and Mars, baby!  She's thinking "why can't you finish this one before you start another one?" and I'm thinking "boy, the woman is an overachiever for sure!!"

Bless Amy and the other project people... sometimes we can convince them to finish OUR projects because they'd rather do that than stare at a UFO!  Oh, and THANKS!!

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!