This past weekend I quietly passed into a new phase of my life. (No, I am not yet qualified for medi-care!) Still, this was a bit of a passage of sorts and one I would never have predicted. I have now joined the ranks of artists and boomers with time on their hands, who in desperation and wanting more to do, have fallen in love with crafting. I know! It sounds so “Holly Hobby!” I am right up there with the people who make jam and pickles, knit their own mittens and make quilts.
This is not to insinuate that these hobbies are bad in any way. They most surely are not. In fact some of the most talented and successful artists are quilters and jewelry makes and I’m sure Mrs. Smuckers began her long and brilliant career, as a jam- making-homemaker of some kind. It is just that my blog is called The Real Life Adventures of a Former Glamour Girl, and somehow “crafting” does not sound glamorous or sexy, at least not to me. The contradiction was seen in the teacher of the workshop, Alexis Garrett of FERNANDFLOWER.com, who was sexy and young, breathtakingly beautiful and ripely with child.
Still, there I was, bright and early on Saturday morning, sitting down at a table with lovely, fellow “crafters,” some of whom were as new to crafting as I, learning to sew on paper to make wonderful art in the form of greeting cards. Yes you read it correctly, I said SEW.
Now you may not know this about me, but I was once a member of the Future Homemakers of America. In fact, I once held the office of Treasurer of the Future Homemakers of America for the state of California. (I know the whole treasurer thing is odd considering my recent inauguration into DA. That will be another story for another day.) The point is that I know how to sew. I have sewn clothes for my children and myself and I have even made a complicated, plaid shirt for one of my former husbands. I have actually taught classes entitled “How to Decorate and Sew with Sheets and Towels.” I am a girl with a textured past.
I had no expectations about how I would do as a creator of unique greeting card art. I did however expect to have fun! This expectation was based on a previous workshop I attended recently on beeswax candle making which was also hosted by Cathy and Stacy of summerlandmercantile.com. I had so much fun dipping wicks into hot beeswax, hanging them to dry on an old fashioned clothes drying rack then leaving the class with ten lovely candles that I had made by myself. I was pretty sure I would at least have some laughs with the card-sewing. There was also food to be served so it was a win for me no matter what.
The process included using rubber stamps to create our own designs and then sewing on bits of fabric, ribbons, old photographs and vintage postage stamps to make unique cards that were actually beautiful! Oh, and we got to use glitter-glue! This was the crowning achievement for a girl who loves sparkle! I even used some painted waxed paper and bits of inner facing to create a filmy, illusionary effect on some of my creations. I found when by sitting down at one machine in a room filled with sewing machines, that sewing was like riding a bicycle. It all came back to me in an instant.
The most surprising and gratifying part of the experience was how it took me out of my head and brought me into my body in a way that was truly meditative and peaceful. There was little chatting among the artists, only an occasional ooh or aah over another's work. I left the workshop clutching my eleven hand made cards and envelopes feeling accomplished, renewed and strangely, happy. The process brought out a part of me I had heretofore never met. Call me Holly Hobby, but the truth is, I loved it!
My life is so glamorous! It's just not fair, lucky for me!!