sewing : : The Mother of Action

Sometimes, Aggravation can be the mother of Action…though usually it’s just the Grandmother of Binge Eating (Note: Why, yes, I have appropriated Terry Pratchett‘s marvelous one-liner to suit my needs.)

tangled mess of embroidery threadsI was so frustrated last night, trying to work on an embroidery; the solar-powered lamp, the nasty weather, rough seas and heaving boat…crafting conditions that would have given more orthodox embroiderers a nose bleed…and I could not find any of the needles I wanted to use, because all my needles (as well as a spilled box of dressmaker’s pins) were lying loose at the bottom of my sewing basket, under great handfuls of snarled, tangled embroidery thread.

WHY? Because I’m a disorganized nincompoop, that’s why!


A pincushion (sewing), with pins. The small
Image via Wikipedia

I was so angry at myself for not having some sort of system…nothing anal retentive, just a little bit of method to the madness?

I’ve been embroidering since I was a seven-year-old in pigtails; can you believe I have never owned a single blesséd pincushion? Or a decent thimble, for that matter?

It seems rather sacrilegious, or disgraceful, at any rate.

Quilted and embroidered cover

I actually started work on a needle book last year…I had already embroidered and quilted the cover, and had only to sew the felt pages into the book, when a good friend in need of a journal came along, and I was moved to bind the aforementioned quilted covers into a lovely writing journal, instead. I didn’t mind, but then I just forgot all plans of organising my needles….until last night, that is, when I spat the dummy for good.

This morning I got up with pincushions on the brain. Nothing embroidered or fancy-shmancy…in a fierce mood, I grabbed two pieces of felt, cut the pattern pieces out, and I made a Spool Bird pincushion. The spool bird pattern is here.

Time it took to hand sew (using backstitch) and stuff my new pincushion? An hour flat.

The satisfaction of having all my needles stuck into one pincushion, where I can keep an eye on the little buggers? Timeless.

“Oh, craft, where is thy sting?” Bring it on, says my pincushion. *insert roar here*

The new pincushion, Panthera avis, rocking his roost.


4 thoughts on “sewing : : The Mother of Action

  1. your needlebook is beyond treasure. Its too beautiful to be keeping just needles, then again – thats why its so wow.

    Also, I have yet to organize the house. Maybe thats why I’m not moving so much, the idea of total organization freezes me up (maybe because the thought itself poses an impossibility). I like small little organized things, and thats why I collect boxes (not the artsy kind, I mean just carton) with all sorts of useless-today-perhaps-useful-tomorrow things. I’ve been hiding behind books and sheets and made excuses for the smallest little discomfort – WHINING I know, I’m pushing myself over a cliff. but, I need to see something beautiful possible happening here for me to get back to making magic. ranting.. oh Nat..


    1. And that’s why it isn’t my needlebook anymore! It was originally meant to be a journal, and that’s what it ended up becoming. So, yes, destiny.
      Sometimes what the spirit needs is a serious space-clearing, where you get rid of a lot of stuff you’ve been carrying around all these years. Funny how I’ll hoard stuff thinking I can’t live without this, and then I throw it out when I’m in one of my desperate moods, and I’ll never think of it, or need it again.
      Take it easy. Organize ONE BOX of things, put a label on it, reward yourself with a trip to a museum or something! 🙂 Do another box in two or three days!
      You’re homesick, too, I think…besides the new bodily discomforts, so my god yes, you’ve taken on a lot of changes at once and it won’t be easy. It took me a year to find my footing in Australia and feel like I would probably stay here even if Kris left me; it happens when you accumulate a critical mass (couldn’t tell you what that mass is) of things you can call your OWN…friends, co-workers, meaningful places and activities, a sense of being part of the community in your own right, somehow, and not just as someone’s wife. Acceptance, on your own terms, by the country you now live in. It takes ever so long, but then that sea change happens and it’s wonderful. Belonging.


  2. Your story is too funny; and so, so true about being just the slightest bit organised…. to free oneself up for the grand creations at hand……I love it!


    1. It all happened so fast, I had to laugh at myself…then in one hour I had a pincushion *somebody kick me for WAITING 30 YEARS to make a pincushion!* So nice of you to visit here, Jenni! Missing you, truly. The three of us don’t get together anymore, turns out you were holding us all together! When you coming back?


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