Wednesday, March 12, 2014

So what? Sew postcards!

I think I may have found a new appreciation for sewing. Thanks to my playtime yesterday (working on my contribution to the Great Big Stitched Postcard Swap), I have some big ideas percolating about combining all the different stuff I do: digital vector illustration, watercolor, paper crafting, sewing, acrylic on canvas paintings.

I almost didn't sign up for the postcard swap. I definitely don't need more stuff to do, especially projects with deadlines. Some days I consider it a really big accomplishment if I take a shower. And my youngest is almost a preschooler… so it's not like I have the new-mom excuse anymore.

When I was about nine years old, my mom, who has loved to sew since she was about that same age, decided I was old enough to learn. So she taught me, but I never really liked it. All the measuring and cutting and seam ripping -- a process I didn't particularly enjoy, all to make projects I liked, but didn't LOVE.

So my sewing machine sits inside a sewing cabinet in the other side of my house -- away from the dog (she's young and still chews table legs occasionally), away from the kids and my computer and art nook (A.K.A. a corner of the family room.) I rarely sew, mostly because of the cabinet's location, but also, out of sight, out of mind. Yesterday I decided to move the machine to the little table next to my computer desk.

I went into making the postcard with no ideas about color, no preliminary sketches, nothing but a little box of scraps, ribbon and sequins that didn't even go together. I just cut and added stuff, used a bunch of fancy stitches that I've never used before, and it was fun! I wasn't following a pattern or plan, just winging it; creating and making decisions about what to add or do next the whole time I was sewing. I think that had a lot to do with it.

So now I'm wondering, what if I made mini quilts like this? Scanned them in? Added them to my vector illustrations and scanned in pen sketches and watercolor blotches? I'm excited to try.

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