Wednesday, 11 March 2009

A Stitch In Time?

Anyone waiting for a photo of some glorious garment to appear amongst all this verbal chicanery will be sadly disappointed. Use your imaginations, Bloglanders! You can choose from dainty baby clothes, jazzy little boy outfits, suits, jackets, wedding outfits, hats, curtains, dolls, toys and anythings else that can start life beneath the foot of a sewing machine. You imagine it and I've probably made it, at some time.

However, I can recall a less than perfect experience a few years ago, when I was still in full time employment. I now relate it, for your eyes only...

The Ballad Of The Bridesmaids' Dresses

Have you ever embarked on a project,
then realised, far from the end,
that the fates have conspired against you,
so your firm resolve gradually bends?
Carol asked me to sew up two outfits,
Claire's bridal attendants to grace.
Soon, my table was totally covered -
paper pattern all over the place.

I'd carefully cut out each section;
twenty pieces I'd trimmed, whilst I dreamed
of the wedding day's colourful garments,
all complete, every stitch, every seam.
When my scissors, at last, finished trimming,
to instruction sheet details I turned.
Far too late to avoid wasted effort,
of Big Snag Number One I then learned.

Bodice pattern showed specified layout
on material width, side to side,
while skirt pieces showed by their markings,
an up and down grain was implied.
Many fabrics would not have caused problems
by the criss-cross of grains of this ilk,
but unfortunately, this was not likely,
when applied to those yards of shot silk.

For held lengthwise, the fabric was paler;
cross-wise showed a much darker hue.
Now I was in quite a dilemma.
What would be the best thing to do?
After quick round of 'phone calls and emails,
between me, the bridesmaids and the bride,
an alternative pattern was chosen;
website pictures helped them to decide.

A mercy dash then to the factory,
for a new pattern packet to buy.
What is that well known adage?
When you're having fun, doesn't time fly?
By now my week's leave was 'most over.
Not a stitch had I sewn, nay, not one!
I was simply back at the beginning,
as if I had never begun!

I thought I could try to get slightly ahead,
by buying two zips, at the ready.
But once back indoors, not a zip could I find
with my shopping. So, whose a big Neddy?
I searched for them, then I went back to the shop.
The counter assistant was sure -
she'd not found a brown paper bag left behind,
so I went home to ponder some more.

When I thought over carefully what I had done,
once I'd got in and closed my front door,
I could see myself unloading shopping with haste...
Then at last two and two equaled four.
A small paper bag full of mushrooms
I had place on a fridge shelf, I knew.
And yes, you guessed, when I looked closer,
there was not one brown bag there, but two.

I can't recommend frozen fasteners,
but the message got through without doubt,
for a symbolic signal I'd given myself -
'Don't forget to leave time to chill out!'


  1. excellent writing
    Do chk my new poem

  2. Hahahah! Oh, you poor girl! I've done this many times--been rushing so fast I can't remember where things have gone. But ack! sorry about the dresses, i'm sure the new pattern was just as beautiful! Jenni

  3. The rhythm in this piece is fantastic Jinksy - Great stuff - And you've made wedding outfits and hats - You are amazing! Oh, and I'm pretty forgetful too - It's my blonde side, I always say by way of excuse! x

  4. What a fun poem. How did the dresses finally turn out.. no doubt those zippers warmed up.

  5. Poor gal. Have you taken on any more sewing projects since then?

  6. Last line says it all.

    I'm gradually becoming amazed at how you string together words in patterns so readily. I've written poems and lyrics, but if you ask me to pump out one daily or so, I'd be round the bend in about two weeks.

  7. Oh, Dear Girl! You are SO clever with your poetry! I loved this.

    I once failed to follow the layout instructions on a piece of light-weight corduroy and had two (apparently) different colors on the front and back of my dress (which had seams right up the center.) Economic times being what they were, I had to wear this "creation" and just pretend that it was intended to be that way. I hope I was more pitied than scorned. Oh, the lessons we have to learn the hard way!

  8. Lawd! A brave soul you are creating bridesmaid dresses! I used to sew - years back, I made my own work clothes. I was pretty good at it, but not good enough to sew for special things like that....

    I always love reading your poems *smiling*

  9. Since I was snookered by the pinny I had to sew in Needlecraft, I have to say I have never experienced any of that. I could never get the hang of knitting either....

    Great poem, I had a chuckle reading it.

  10. At least you had fun setting it all down in the poem.
    Remember poems help our mental health.

  11. Enjoyed this post, found it most amusing.

  12. This was so wonderful Jinksy!!
    I loved the way everything ebbed and flowed and connected together perfectly!
    I wonder how long it took you to write...
    Big Hug!
    Donnie X

  13. I'm looking for items misplaced from our trip. I suspect they're still back there. Right where I left them.


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