Thursday, February 24, 2011

On pinning, patience and being a hare

Those of you who know me already know I'm not the world's most patient person (and a lot of you who've read here for a while probably had that figured out). I read young adult books partly because I get satisfaction out of finishing an entire book in just a few hours (by the same token, I like nonfiction because I can quit when I get bored and don't have to finish to find out how it ends). I usually don't read all the directions before just jumping in - it's a big reason I'm self taught. I don't think I could handle a sewing or other class where I had to take baby step after baby step, though I'm sure I'd be a better seamstress for it. In fact, it's pretty crazy the things I love most take the most patience. That old cliche -- it's the challenge that make it so rewarding.

I started thinking about all this when I was making bias tape, which I love love LOVE having on a finished garment, and hate hate HATE making and using. It's not super difficult to do, it's just super tedious. Careful marking, careful cutting, careful ironing, careful pinning -- all before getting to the fun part, the sewing! Then, MORE careful ironing and careful pinning. Quelle nightmare! But it's so lovely to have enclosed seams, and even lovelier to use custom tape rather than store-bought.

miles and miles of pins, i swear.

I'm definitely a hare, forever bolting out the door wholly unprepared (figuratively and literally - did I ever tell you about the time I dashed out to the convenience store with my shirt still undone from feeding Mr. T?), leaving masses of unfinished tasks in my wake. I watch my timid little tortoise son, almost nine months and not yet crawling (not that I'm fussed about it!), afraid of his own shadow, and I wish I had just a little of that caution and think-first-edness.

So I practice. I make myself iron and pin and iron again. I measure ingredients exactly (haha, yeah right. I do try to read the whole recipe and check my pantry first). The discipline is like meditating. Distracting at first because I get agitated and impatient, but the results are so much nicer, and maybe one day I'll learn patience to balance my impulsiveness. Until then, I'll just try to remember procrastination is not the same thing as patience!


  1. Sweetheart, you stand a chance being surrounded by C and T and the fact that you are somewhat like your dad. However, you also have enough mom traits that negate all the other influences! Teach me when you learn.

  2. I liked this. And it is making me wonder what I am. I guess more hare, but I have some tortoise corners. The running-out-the-door thing is SO ME every single day, even if I somehow manage to get up in time to mess around on my computer in the morning.

  3. olivia, me too. somehow, giving myself plenty of time usually ends up in me wasting it and being later than usual.

  4. wow, reading this really reminds me of myself! I am a total wing-it type with creative work---sometimes it's completely ridiculous because I jump into things and pretty much know from the beginning that they will not work out because I'm too impatient to take the time to be careful.

    Did we know we had this in common? I didn't remember so. But anyway, I find your sewing projects completely amazing because of this patience and carefulness. Perhaps we all develop certain skills and then we're able to wing-it in that area the best. Sewing is not one of those areas for me! I particularly love cooking because you can really improvise easily in the kitchen.

    Oh, and running out of the house with your shirt undone--I love it!


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