Monday, May 21, 2012

Sewing a square shouldn't be so hard.

I had a miraculous moment on Sunday - I had caught up on my To Do list and could move on to my Wish I Could To Do list.

That make sense?

Do you have one of these lists of random things you fantasize about doing (not sexy things) (OK, maybe sexy things. I don't know how you are.)?

And do you add them to your To Do list as though you're TOTALLY going to do them but then you have life and life takes up all the real time and you then you have these random things sitting at the bottom of your To Do list just pissing you off because IF ONLY I COULD CROSS THEM OFF MY LIFE WOULD BE AWESOME?

Me too.

And, in case you hadn't already realized, I'm a total list person and a total Crossing Off List Items Makes Me Feel Whole person so having shit languishing at the bottom of my To Do list just doing nothing forever makes me crabby.

Which is why I was SO extra happy yesterday when it was, like, 11am and BAM - I had time.

The garden didn't need me for anything. The dog was walked. The fridge was full. The laundry was doing whatever it does in that mystery machine. Bubba was moving music from one hardrive to another meanwhile killing universes full of aliens. I had time.

The free kind.

The Knocking Shit Off The Wish I Could To Do List kind.

So I thought I'd make some pillowcases for our office couch's HIDEOUS pillows.

Something easy that wouldn't take too much time, effort or brain power. Something that would let me quickly knock a long standing item off the bottom of my To Do list.

NOT something that should take nearly two hours, multiple adjustments, multiple swearing sessions with the seam ripper and multiple welfare checks yelled from the office as Bubba checked in on the status of my sewing scissors and their proximity to our walls/my eyes.

Alas, that was what it turned out to be.

People - I no longer know how to sew like a human being.

First of all, there was the haphazard measuring.

See, I've made pillowcases before and I've always made them too small. So I'm later found, post-sewing, sweatily wrestling a pillow into its pillowcase while screaming every threat a person could think of at the pillow and/or its case.

This time I thought that - HA HA! - I will be smart (impossible) - I will measure these pillowcases to be much larger than the pillows so that they have plenty of room to fill them out without straining the seams. I will of course not use a pattern because I'm also not using standard sized pillows, so I'll just eyefuck it.

Of course, my measuring method being haphazard as it was, I took no issue in simply setting my pillow on top of the fabric and cutting around it about 3" wider than the pillow.

"That ought to be plenty of room!" said the delusional idiot who had no business playing with the sewing machine.

Then, after cutting out these monstrous future pillowcases fit to double as a four man tent, I dug into my sewing box to find that the only zippers I had were of the 7-9" variety. This meant that they were also of the "sweatily wrestling a pillow into its pillowcase" variety which momentarily saddened me until I surveyed my options (a split back pillowcase, buttoned pillow case, sewn in place pillowcase, no pillowcase) and determined that who cares, I can use the exercise.

The fact that the only colors I had were white, forest green and teal to go with my black, white, yellow and grey fabric deterred me for nary half a second.

The fact that in 5 minutes of project time I had already compromised on two elements of my design (fit and color) should have warned me of the pain to come, but I was too drunk with I'M GOING TO CROSS SHIT OFF MY LIST OUT OF THE WAY to heed any warnings.

Onward I plowed until I'd sewn both pillow cases and stood unblinking at the bar (now serving as a standing sewing station - handy) as my pillows absolutely SWAM in their enormo pillow cases.

Also, I was sweating and my hands were raw and scratched from forcing the pillows through the tiny 7" opening of their enormo pillowcases YAY.

Which brings me to "Second of all" and the seam-ripping BO-nanza I went on just undoing the seams of one side of each pillow so that I could tuck in the (extremely superfluous) excess and take these pillowcases down a peg.

Of course, because I must have a "Third of all", I accidentally seam-ripped the wrong side of one of the pillows (though now I'm having a hard time remembering which) and so had to re-sew two edges.


Approximately one hundred years later, I had sewn two pillowcases for two awful pillows, stuffed said awful pillows into said pillowcases and thrown them on our office sofa to do...nothing. They're just sitting there being all, "This is what you get for putting us at the bottom of the list so long that you forgot how to sew."

Such attitude on pillows. Who knew?

At least I can cross it off the list. WITH FUCKING GLEE.


  1. I... have never encountered this time of which you speak. This... 'free time'. It sound amazing. I should never have had children.

    1. Even without children, it is a rare find. I hardly believed in its existence myself.

  2. ........they look lovely, to me (says the girl who can't sew for shit).

    My "free time" list includes things like knitting, steam cleaning carpets, painting rooms, painting in general (like on a canvas), and cleaning in the basement.

    With us moving your way (seriously, we're moving to the Bay Area - Husband actually leaves on Thursday), some of these things like cleaning in the basement are actually getting done!

    1. I saw that you guys were moving the Bay! Exciting! And sudden! Welcome :)

  3. Orla fabric? Super cute. And that's what you get for spending all your time mastering bees, and G+T making. :)

    1. Actually, that's my sister's self-designed fabric (the grey and yellow)! The other is...I do not know. I got it at a local sewing shop and threw out the selvedge, so your guess is as good as mine.

  4. I do that all the time... leave things at the bottom of the list so long that I forgot how to do them. It's sort of how I feel about knitting. Every time I pull the bag out, I have to relearn what I'm doing. Lame.

    Those pillows are lovely, though. I think they were worth it.


[2013 update: You can't comment as an anonymous person anymore. Too many douchebags were leaving bullshit SPAM comments and my inbox was getting flooded, but if you're here to comment in a real way like a real person, go to it.]

Look at you commenting, that's fun.

So, here's the thing with commenting, unless you have an email address associated with your own profile, your comment will still post, but I won't have an email address with which to reply to you personally.

Sucks, right?

Anyway, to remedy this, I usually come back to my posts and post replies in the comment field with you.

But, if you ever want to email me directly to talk about pumpkins or shoes or what it's like to spend a good part of your day Swiffering - shoot me an email to finnyknitsATgmailDOTcom.