It starts with a little thought, or a wish, or a desire, or perhaps even a need to make a dress. It is almost always a dress. A cotton print dress. The kind of dress forms in my mind, a loose idea. Fabric selection then, holding prints up to the light, running my hands over the weft and warp, and making decisions.
Looking through patterns to find a basic bodice that is suitable for what I have in mind, followed by pattern paper and colored pencils. Deepen the armscye, alter the neckline, lengthen the bodice, add ease to the side seams. I scrap the inset cap sleeve idea and instead create a gathered shoulder three quarter length with a princess cuff, oh yes much better.
As I cut out the pieces, my girl is home sick and she watches. She gets up close next to me and asks questions. "How do you know to cut like that and not make a mistake?" "Why do you pin the pieces together here, but not there?" "Can I do the marking with the wheelie thinger?" "Is it time to sew the ribbon on yet?" I answer her questions and tell her it takes practice and patience and love. I give her some tracing paper and the 'wheelie thinger' and show her how to use it, where to make the marks.
As I sew, there is focus and intent along with assuredness; this is what I know. It is in my hands, my head, my muscle memory, my heart and soul. This is how Lola Nova was born, making nice things for my girl; this is how I grew my skills, found my passion, and it is love.
It is a little like therapy; it quiets the chaos and brings me back to myself, it restores confidence and brings joy.
And then there's this...
Thank you for all of the lovely comments and well wishes this week, I truly appreciate them. I am on the mend now and looking forward to the days ahead.