You may remember a post I wrote some time ago (like...a month... almost two...) about my attempts at making a skirt from a tutorial I found on Pinterest. The guidelines were very simple (under ten steps) and the girl made her skirt in under 30 minutes.
If you read my post about this creation, you'll know that it was not as easy as she made it seem, nor did it take 30 minutes. This thing took multiple hours of two people trading off (thanks mom!), partly because the sewing machine was NOT playing nice, and partly because the tutorial wasn't quite as easy to follow as it looked.
Well, here we are again... because I FINALLY finished it!
It only took a full 2 seasons of re-watching New Girl, an extended edition of Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, and the first half of Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers to complete (in other words, a few weeks).
Mind you, all of that excessive seeming amount of work was due just to my hand sewing the hem of this skirt...the entire hem. While this may not seem like a big deal, when you're out of practice at hand sewing, and the circumference of the project your working on turns out to be MUCH larger than originally estimated, things don't go as quickly as one would hope...
I'll admit, I felt defeated a few times. This thing has my blood, sweat, and tears in it (literally- I stabbed myself with the needle more times than I can count, once under the nail...talk about unpleasant....), so even though it's not perfect (the hem may be tighter in some spots than others, and the waist may be uneven in the back), I'm still incredibly proud of it!
I've also learned some things from this experience:
1) When working on any project that involves a needle, make sure you are either working on a flat surface, or at least not working anywhere that dropping said needle could turn into moments of panic (aka: don't work over a carpet that is the same color as your needle-very important when you're barefoot).
2) Find a place to work where there is good lighting, especially when focusing intently on something so small- your eyes, head, and patience will thank you later.
3) Take breaks, not only looking away every few minutes to stretch your eyes, but get up and stretch your body/move your neck (that way, you can actually look up without being in searing pain 45 minutes later).
4) Take your time. This is the hardest one for me because I start rushing when I get impatient. However, the more time you take on things as you go, the less mistakes you'll have- or at least the easier it will be to go back the few stitches to redo them (not just realize it after working for an hour straight and proceed to throw said project across the room while sulking under a bean bag chair in the dark).
5) Don't compare yourself to others, especially someone who has been doing this for years when it's something you've never done before.
Not only do I have a tangible item completed from my hours of work, it's something I can wear, and be proud of. I can also see how I improved over time by looking at where I started with the hem compared to the stitches I finished with. I felt so inspired after finishing this skirt, I patched a hole in the sleeve of a sweater and redid a sloppy fix I had done on a stuffed animal that had torn years ago.
This process has inspired me to continue practicing my sewing skills, and taught me to take my time with future projects so I can be proud of the results when I've finished.
What is a project you've worked on that you're proud of or learned something important from?