For those of you who’ve kindly followed my sewing journey to date, you’ve probably worked out this blog is less about sewing and more about what I think about when I’m sewing.
Whilst my spiritual leanings are distinctly Buddhist, formal meditation does not come easy. Movement has provided a window into the benefits single pointed attention might bring – yoga, cycling, running – and recently I’ve discovered another portal in sewing.
I started journalling my adventures in stitch with the aim of documenting my makes and writing about the process in a traditional fashion. However, when I got down to the business of writing, what emerged were my thoughts whilst sewing, rather than the craft in hand.
I’ve always had things I wanted to say – just not the vehicle through which to express them. That is, until I discovered Maude and tentatively embarked on creating my own handmade wardrobe. Writing propels me to give memory form and in the process I’m aware of how much is edited and filtered through the eyes of the scribe. I’m sure people could read my recollections and find them markedly divorced from their own. For what are our memories, other than the stories we tell ourselves about what’s happened to us.
Writing this blog is an opportunity for me to revisit the past and celebrate a difference which used to elicit shame. It’s also caused me to consider the subjectivity of my reflections and their validity. I’ve always had strong opinions and am drawn to people who are emotionally articulate. I’m fortunate to be in close relationships with people whom I can be frank without fear of rejection – exploring differing viewpoints in constructive exchange. However, seeing things differently can result in disharmony and for me, managing conflict will always be an ongoing challenge.
The stories I’ve told myself have not always been conducive to a healthy state of mind. In adulthood, I’m pleased to be writing a different script, as I’ve worked out that most people aren’t thinking very much about you at all – they are far too busy making up their own stories about what’s happened to them. I’ve also met someone whose take on the world is filtered through a much rosier hue and he’s a joy to be around. Which has led me to rethink – if we are simply expressing our stories to one another, I’d rather be happy than right, fluid than fixed.
And finally, something about this post’s creative endeavour – a progression in the story of Maude. I’ve been toying with the idea of making Maude centric accessories and this is a tentative attempt at a make up bag. Folks on Instagram have been encouraging me to think bigger than I’d envisaged and I’m starting to think there may be scope for Maude to emerge on a wider platform than my clothing. But I’m a new kid on the block, with a head for words, rather than business. So, any ideas are most welcome … where do you see Maude?