Thursday, May 6, 2010

Somedays I'm Kinda Smart. Other Days, Not So Much

Seven years ago, I was a young mother and fledgling seamstress dying to make clothing for my young children. I decided upon a simple two-piece pajama set and picked out some fun fabrics.

I remember those pajamas with fondness. They were roomy enough that Mike was able to wear them for a couple of years. They were short sleeved with pants and made of a light cotton so they were suitable for both summer and winter. I accidentally made them too long so as he grew I let the pants down. I'm not sure who loved those pajamas more, me or Mike. By the time he was far too big to wear them any longer and they had to be retired, they were so worn that you could see the outline of his body through the fabric.

It was those pajamas that came to mind last week as I did the periodic clothes rotation that the seasons and growing children demand. Adam had outgrown most of his pajamas so I decided that I would make him a few pairs for his upcoming birthday. I even bought some fabric several months ago with the vague idea that I might one day turn it into jammies.

This morning found me in my sewing room, fondly reminiscing as I perused the box of every pattern I've ever purchased. There was the baby bunting I made for Noel. And there were the dragon and dragon-slayer Halloween costumes from when they were one and three.

I finally found the pajama pattern and pulled it out of the envelope to sort out the pieces that I would need.

I smiled to myself as I noticed the changes that several years of sewing have wrought. I used to carefully cut out every piece in the pattern, regardless of whether or not I actually planned on using it. Now I only cut out what I need, saving myself a lot of time that I used to waste cutting out patterns to projects I would never make.

I sorted through every piece, double checked, and then sorted again. There was every damn piece of that pattern except the ones I needed. Which leads me to assume that I threw them away!

I'm a minimalist kinda gal. If you're looking for knick knacks, keep looking because you won't find them at my house. My prom dress was simple enough that I wore it to church for years after I graduated from high school. I put my mother through endless stress because I wanted to rent instead of buy my wedding dress and I refused to get silk wedding flowers so that I could follow the tradition of keeping my wedding bouquet in a beautiful glass display case. (I left my fresh wedding flowers at the church, intending for them to be thrown away and my sneaky mother kept them, dried them and put them in a jar and gave them to me a few weeks later. It took several years before the guilt allowed me to fianlly throw them away.) My rule is this: "If it's not seasonal and you haven't used it in more than a month, you don't need it." Makes for some interesting, ah, conversations between me and my "saver" husband. But I digress.

Somewhere in that frugal little 24 year old brain of mine, I thought that it would make sense to throw away the only pieces of the pattern that I used and keep the rest. They were the key pieces so I can't even use the others, like the neck facing.

Turns out I was a big dummy even then. It's nice to know that some things never change.


Darin and Amy said...

I wish I was still there so you could teach me how to USE a freakin' pattern! I like to be that make-it-up-as-I-go-along kinda girl. Doesn't always turn out so great!

Nikki said...

So funny Julie. I was just hauling out my sewing machine and thought of you and all your faaaabulous creations. My poor little girl needs new pajama pants in a bad way. I made her the pair she's still wearing about two years ago. lol Lucky for her, I'm a little bit of a flannel fanatic favoring girl flannel over boy flannel. So I have lots to pick from. :)

Now I need to go make a ducky towel and some baby washcloths for a baby shower.