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DIY

Dreaming of Weaving

November 9, 2015

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As a person, I’m not really orientated towards crafts. But my mom is a genius in handicraft and one of my older sisters is also very good. I’ve just been famous for losing my nerves when sewing and doing handicraft, like I told you earlier. However, just recently I realized I actually enjoy sewing and handicraft as long as I keep it simple and small enough. Or it’s just another symptom of becoming middle-aged. Anyhow, this is happening and it made me think of the possibility of weaving something.

I never thought it would be possible to weave in a city apartment, because to me weaving is “a big room dedicated for the loom & the rest of the materials you need to be able to make huge rugs”. My mother, aunts and grandmothers used to make rugs like this when I was a child. I can still remember how we kids tried to stay a little further away from the whole thing on the day the warp was made. It was clear it was not an easy task. I still think it is not an easy task but I was wrong about not being able to weave in a city apartment and making a little smaller and easier warp.

In September I went to De Hallen for the Ambacht in Beeld Festival and joined a weaving workshop. We made the warp just around the back of a stool and I was amazed that with some imagination you can actually do little projects with such a simple and with almost non-existent equipment. After some browsing on Pinterest I joined the group of people who are obsessed about SMALL WALL-HANGING RUGS. Believe me, we are many. And now you think, oh yes, it’s a serious case of becoming middle-aged. I have started the preparations by transforming some old t-shirts into weaving weft. I still need to find some more interesting weft materials in different colours and a small wooden frame to try out my first own homemade wall-hanging rug. Will keep you posted when I get to action and see some results. Friends and relatives: act surprised and happy when you receive tiny twisted wall-hanging rugs from me for a Christmas present!

DIY

Sewing, Swearing and Self-Discoveries

October 5, 2015

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I don’t know what’s gotten into me but I have been doing quite a bit of handicraft and sewing lately. I asked for a sewing machine for a Christmas present last year, because I have always liked to have the possibility to fix small things (patch a hole in a t-shirt, shorten a pair of pants etc). I have done some small projects years ago, but the problem has been the moment (it always comes) when I realize I need to use the seam ripper. It just blows off my nerves like playing that Yoshi’s Island videogame. You cannot believe that swearing. I’m more of a traditional Super Mario Bros girl – and with sewing I also prefer the simpler stuff. I made linen pants for my husband some years ago. You cannot believe that swearing. They were beautiful pants and my husband wore them till they split in two (which happens to all his pants eventually, it is a mystery I do not understand till this day). Or then he wore them because he heard my swearing and was afraid for his life. Anyway, I was left with the impression they were beautiful pants – the process just was too much for me.

However, now that I’m older and wiser, I realized I CAN just do the simple things. First, I did the macramé hangers and they were beautiful. Now I found a cool idea on Pinterest to make your old t-shirts into a scarf and I made my husband one out of his t-shirts he does not wear, but that have sentimental value. It also came out very nice. And I did not swear. I must be on the way to inner peace! And I’m not joking here!

I came to realize why first when I was thinking about the reasons I don’t like to cook from the weekly 3-meal dinner box we order home (which really is a saviour because you don’t need to shop or think of what to cook). First I thought it’s because the recipes are in Dutch and that it’s too tiring to read them in the evening until one day it hit me that I do not like to follow strict instructions. It is so boring. And if it has new recipes every week, I don’t get to do my versions of any of the food. This surprised me, because I’m a law-obeying Finn and I rarely even jaywalk. I thought I’m ok with instructions and rules. The same applies to sewing and handicraft. When I see a nice product I want to think and see for myself how it is done. If I don’t figure it out, it’s not my thing.

I would love to make some of my wardrobe myself and I found this lovely sewing book called Easy Cute Straight Stitch – Japanese Craft Book by Yoshiko Tsukiori that I’m craving for now and wondering do I dare to order it or will it take away my newly discovered peace of mind. Easy straight stitch… I can do that, e?