It’s contagious!

Remember a few days ago when I mentioned that I wanted to have a day of sewing?   Today was the day!   My thanks to my friend Kristin for allowing my kids to come up and play at their place all afternoon, thus giving me almost 5 hours of uninterrupted sewing time.   My favorite way to sew is by re-purposing old clothes and making them into something fun and new.  A friend of mine and I once pitched a book called “Re-Sewn” full of such projects.     Creative differences with the publisher caused its’ downfall, but the ideas get used all the time in the stuff I make.

You’ll see today’s results below, but the best thing about days like these is that everyone winds up creating stuff.   I think humans all have an innate desire to be creative and to make things, but often that desire is beaten out of us at a young age.   I don’t mean literally – but the urge to create is often discouraged;  it’s too messy, it’s silly, it isn’t ‘productive’, it wastes time, and on and on.    There used to be a commercial on the PBS Kids channel where this kid showed all these things he made with duct tape.   All very creative and cool, but for whatever reason PBS felt compelled to include the boy saying, “This stuff got so popular at school that my teacher had to ban it.”    (?!)  In other words, kids were having waaay more fun making stuff out of duct tape than they were doing whatever the teacher wanted them to do.    But I digress….

When I went to pick up my kids this afternoon, Maya showed me these cool pouches she and her friend Maya made out of the papers that come in the Lego mini-figure pouches.  (Ben is making more of them as I write this.)  They covered them with clear packing tape so that they won’t rip or be ruined by water.    Then, when we got home and I showed them what I’d been up to all day, Ben sat down at ‘his’ sewing machine and made two fabric pouches with velcro fasteners.     There is not much I love more than seeing my kids create things and watching how one idea leads to another.   Why anyone would ever discourage that kind of thought process is truly beyond me.

Not to get too pessimistic, but there is a lot of uncertainty in the country and the world at present.  No one knows what will happen with our environment or the way our country does its’ business.   The job market changes so quickly that some things college students are learning will be obsolete by the time they graduate.   But the ability to sew, to re-purpose things and create is a skill that will never be obsolete.    It can give you something useful out of scraps, or something beautiful from the ordinary.   It stimulates the mind and gives you a great sense of satisfaction when you hold the results in your hands.

Best kind of contagious there is.

Pouches from lego paper inserts courtesy of the Mayas

Ben's fabric pouches w/ velcro fasteners

The sewing corner

Two new shirtbags - the bottom is sewn up

Two skirts - one mini, one full, combined to make this

Small purse made from an old pant leg - the applique is the hobo sign for 'hayloft to sleep in'

Showing the inside of the bag, lined with leftovers from the full skirt

About Amy

Amy Milstein was born and raised on a farm in Indiana, but after 20+ years considers herself a full-fledged New Yorker. She is married with two kids, who do not go to school but are instead life learners. This means they learn by living in the world (real life ) instead of hearing about it and simulating it in a classroom. With her family, Amy loves to travel, read, watch movies, write, sew, knit - the list is endless.
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