Tuesday, June 10, 2014

My courageous Friend

I am going to call her courageous.  I have wanted to share this amazing lady for a long time but I could just not think of the right words. Maybe that should say I had to many words to describe her, kind, thoughtful, generous are just a few. 

That all changed this last week when this courageous lady wrote a blog post, stating what many of us in the sewing world have known for a long time but never spoke of and that is:  There are some very bad examples of sewing floating around in blog land.
Not just bad examples showing an oops (something we all do) but using these examples as teaching tools.  
The attitude seems to be it's ok to do it wrong as long as you are doing it!!  That is pretty sad because I am sure some of those coming across these blogs, really do want to learn to perfect their skills and make items they are proud of.
What better way to learn then for someone to help you by showing you what not to do.
For writing this post Bunny came under a personal attack.  There was never a whisper in Bunny's post to say one personal word about anyone.
Not being in control of their fingers these people went on to attack her friends.  I am one of those friends so I take it personally. Note to the person hiding behind the name ice cream--I am not a lifeless sewing buddy.  I am a full of life sewing buddy. Ice cream you crack me up how funny.

Visit Bunny  http://lasewist.blogspot.com/
Show her some love


  1. She is funny and at this point I am enjoying the entertainment. That's why I keep her comments up. The girls at work got a big hoot out of it too.

    Nonie, you are such a sweetie. You didn't have to do this but I thank you. I have to say the positive support I have received has been large and overwhelming. Not one of the nay sayers has emailed me as I offered to commnunicate and not have a flaming contest on the blog. Seems when there is no audience, there is no opinion. But the supporters have been non stop. Every time I open my email there are more. I thank them all. Thanks to the kindness of friends like you, I am uplifted. Thanks again, sweetie.

  2. I know the post you made could not have been an easy dissension, knowing there would be negative comments. You stuck to your guns, it needed to be said. I do support you.

  3. Do you recall at the dawn on the internet, there was a very amusing cartoon that made the rounds. It was a dog, typing on a keypad in front of a computer screen. The caption was, "On the internet, nobody knows your a dog". Ice Cream and her/his ilk will hide because they lack the fortitude to stand up for their convictions, it's too easy to hit, run and hide. Like Bunny, I've shared that post with friends, and we also have had a very good laugh.

    Nonie, thank you for this post. I am among the BAS (Bunny appreciation society). This topic has been a bug-a-boo of mine as well, but I don't want to, nor do I have time to take it on, but will be glad to comment regarding it. (You see, I'm ever so busy being a lifeless sewing buddy.)

    Good for you Nonie for having the conviction to stand up and share this with your readers. And if they share it as well, my goodness, can you imagine the positive impact it could have.

    Warm regards, Rosemary

    1. Thank you Rosemary, how sweet of you.

    2. Very few people accuse me of being sweet Nonie. :-) But thank you!

  4. I think it is important that tutorials show professional pictures of what to aim for. By all means use the other pictures as stages on the road to learning, as it helps to show how much you improve along the way, but don't show those as an example of the finished item.

    As some of the bloggers responding to Bunny's post have said, nobody starts off perfect. It takes years of practice to get your sewing to a semi-professional finish. I am still learning and I've been sewing since I was 4, so that's 48 years now!

    I am a firm believer in practising. I've made numerous squares testing techniques before making the actual garment. The thing about today's society is that we are all in such a rush wanting instant results. If you need something quickly there's nothing wrong with making a dress in an hour. But like fast food every day isn’t good for you, fast sewing is no substitute for spending your time enjoying the process of sewing with traditional techniques, and improving your skills as you sew.

    Sharing your love of the craft and encouraging those new to sewing doesn't mean that we shouldn't let them know where their work needs improvement. Although I concede that unless it is in one to one tuition or small classes this can sometimes be misinterpreted as unkindness rather than helpful criticism, which is very far from the truth.

    Those commenters who use their children as a reason for less than perfect sewing are missing the point. If you're sewing something for someone you love then surely you DO want it to be at least as perfect as your skillset and time schedule allows. If you have a daughter pestering you to let her wear the dress before the hem is done because she is excited to wear it, then I'm all for using fusibles to fix the hem quickly. You can hem it properly later when she is asleep in bed.

    Many say that nobody would see a sewing flaw on a moving child. If it's for playclothes then that maxim is fine. Why spend a long time doing detailed sewing on a dress that may be covered in mud or torn while climbing a tree? However, if you are making something for a special occasionand you're using expensive fabric then it IS worth spending time on techniques that make all the difference. Not to do so is a waste of time and fabric.

    Cost is a huge consideration when learning to sew. Much as I’d love to, I could not afford to come to America and do a residential course with the Martha Pullen tutors. I'm sure that many who live in the US could not afford those courses either, and even if they had money they may not have the time. That sort of learning is beyond the reach of many people so those who cannot afford top notch tuition have to find another way to learn sewing. That leaves books or the the internet e.g. Craftsy, bloggers or Youtube. The tuition provided varies in quality and delivery. Not everyone can pick up a sewing book and teach themselves. One to one tuition from a master craftsperson is always going to be the better option, but real life dictates that not everyone can achieve that goal and must do the best they can.

    The comments on Bunny's blog that I find very disturbing are the ones where people are suggesting that Bunny and others who sew are not creative and should design patterns. Why? Not everyone is interested in designing patterns. I learned pattern manipulation as a teenager because I had to - none of the patterns fit me when I started to develop a chest! I moved on from that to designing my own patterns, because I wanted to. And not just clothes patterns. I was a successful toy and artist teddy bear designer for many years too.

    People who are interested in designing patterns do that because they want to. People who sew are not failures because they don't want to be a designer, that is downright untrue. If you give the same pattern and fabric to 10 people you get 10 different results - because sewers ARE creative. They put their heart and soul into what they make.

    1. Genine, your comments really hit the spot. Not everyone that sews wants to design so I do not really understand where she was going with that statement. Sewing is another skill that needs to be learned. Like cooking-close just won't do it if the dinner is burnt.

  5. Loved your comments, Gennie. I didn't understand the comments to the effect that if I really knew what I was doing I would be designing patterns. It is not something that interests me and we are all different in our interests. As you say, we are all designers, every time we pick out a pattern, imagine a possible change to it, search for the perfect fabric to enhance the design, maybe add some embellishment or other changeup. That is, to me, the really fun part of sewing. I like that fantastical voyage of making up the design in my head but have no desire whatsoever to make patterns and sell them. I really think those comments were just a grasp at controlling and hiding the real crux of the issue, what you mention in your first paragraph. Thanks, Gennie, for your always well thought out thoughts.

    1. I think you are right Bunny, the design comment was a stab in the dark to derail the conversation.