A call to create!

Heaven’s, but I have just read an article in The Guardian & although it was written in slight jest & mockery, it has annoyed & disappointed me somewhat.

Entitled The Hell of Handicrafts it describes one woman’s journey into crafting. Why she has set herself this journey is not clear and as you read further, one can only imagine a cruel Editor in the wings laughing maniacally at her misfortune! She writes so derisively & passionlessly I ended up feeling quite despondent by the end.

I have been sewing since I was about four or five, and stitched my first stitch on a sewing machine when just seven, I learnt on my Mum’s old ‘hand crank’ Singer, & still love the feeling I had then; excitement mixed with anticipation & the  pride of making something beautiful with my own hands.

At no point does the writer of the Hell of Handicrafts get even a glimmer of this. To be honest the article just illustrates that if you don’t know, & can’t do after a few attempts go find a class. There’re 100’s of them, & learning with others can often be more productive, & a lot more fun.

It’s not her lackadaisical attitude which has annoyed, it’s not her sneering at ‘the price’, it’s not the fact that she clearly just doesn’t want to make these things, it’s that this is print. Big grown-up print. For others to see. Now this is truly unforgivable.  Especially the end of the article where she lectures the reader in her ’10 rules for happier handicrafters’.

Expounding on a subject she clearly has no knowledge, has no interest in learning, & hasn’t learnt anything over the course of the piece she has just typed up is cruel to the budding ‘handicrafter’. Why should one wear white? I’m as in the dark as you, I have never stitched myself to anything, & I am left slightly confused as to how she managed to on a sewing machine! Finally, take no notice as your friends & especially your family, will ADORE your creations, no matter how lumpy, misshapen or odd.

I cringe at the thought of some of the things I have offloaded to Aunts, Grandparents & Mums, Dads & my long suffering brother! However; they understood I was on a journey & learning, one of the high points on that journey was seeing their pleasure watching my now sister-in-law walking to marry my brother in a dress I had made beautifully & to couture standards. I am sure they all at some point that day remembered the child/girl/woman who had given them variously embroidered cards, clear plastic patch-worked stockings (I’m not kidding!), appliqued coasters, painted spoons (blame my school for that one) & framed sketches. They all still have them, they all still love them, & if I think really hard about my life as a ‘handicrafter’ I don’t regret making any of them. Except the plastic stocking. That was a bit odd!

The dress? Well, the dress looked like this…


Unfortunately I have no photographs of the stocking despite my Mum getting it out each year and hanging it up!

So readers don’t listen. Follow your creative heart, find a book, a class or just ask someone. If you want to create, go create. & don’t look back for anything!

Happy stitching!

To join me in a class click here for dates & times. And budding crafters/fashion designers/creators please do not hesitate to ask me anything.


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