Hellebore collection

A presentation board prepared for the Surface Pattern Design course. To anyone who knows me, this certainly represents a huge leap forward for me. Why? Because it involved stitching. With a sewing machine.

Following some not so subtle hinting, The Husband bought me a sewing machine as a Christmas present several aeons ago. However, it remained in a cupboard, unused, until very recently. I decided to finally get to grips with the whole sewing thing after a lifetime of avoiding it. I think it probably didn’t help having an aunt who was a professional seamstress, and could run up anything you wanted in no time at all. This meant I never felt a burning desire to learn. I also had a couple of absolutely vile sewing teachers who put me off the whole venture early on.

So (if you’ll excuse the pun), what changed my mind? Well, in addition to thinking that it could not be beyond the wit of (wo)man to actually learn the skill, a book came along that inspired me to experiment. Part of the title tells you all you need to know: ‘Learning to draw with your sewing machine’ (here by Poppy Treffry). As soon as I reframed the sewing machine as just another drawing tool to add to the armoury, I wanted to learn.

Learning involved discovering parts of the machine which until a few days ago I thought of as belonging to a foreign language, such as ‘feed dogs’ (this is apparently a noun, rather than a verb). Removing the foot (also, thankfully, a piece of metal rather than what you stand on) was a necessary operation, as was learning to steer an embroidery hoop under a stabbing needle.

For those of you for whom sewing machines hold no fear, these will seem small accomplishments indeed. For me, they have made my week. And my latest surface pattern design collection.

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