When Middle Aunt invited me to join her and a friend for High Tea there was really only one question: what shall I wear? I knew there was nothing truly suitable in my wardrobe. There never is! And while it is the case that I sometimes get by with what I have, I thought this called for something a little more creative, a little more inventive, a little more – handsewn? Yes, that’s it. Well, handmade, anyway. I didn’t really think I’d end up getting out the thimble and fine crewels. My intention was always to use my sewing machine.
My intention was also to destash. I’m at the part of life where you don’t want to keep accumulating things because someone else is going to have to deal with them after you’re gone; and I speak from experience when I say that that’s really unfair. Although I’ve been eyeing off New Look 6000 and had actually purchased the pattern, I knew that for me it wouldn’t be a quick make and I probably didn’t have anything in stash that would do it justice. I’ve been sewing up totes and purses these last few weeks. Time was slipping by and, a couple of days ago, the need for some work on the dress – indeed, a finished dress – had reached red alert. What to do?
Raid the wardrobe, of course! You didn’t think I was going to be able to pull a rabbit out of a hat – or a dress out of the sewing room – at THAT short notice, did you?! Luckily, I was able to find something appropriate enough that fitted and looked presentable, which was the main thing. I might even have worn a skirt, but that the elastic on the one I picked out decided that enough was enough and it sort of fell apart in my hands. Oops. Yeah, damn, that was that plan scuppered. I will fix the elastic, of course, because I like the outfit and value having a dressy, lightweight skirt for summer; but it will take dedication and more than just a few minutes because I have to figure out how I’m going to manage it.
Somewhat as an aside, I explain that Middle Aunt and Uncle have a few chooks, who lay a significant number of eggs. Accordingly, we save our egg cartons and occasionally an exchange takes place. Although I wasn’t able to show off a dress I’d made, I did take a pile of egg cartons I’d saved so that Middle Aunt could take them home. And I put them in one of the totes I’d made from that leftover furnishing fabric I was given such a long, long time ago. There’s not enough of any of it to make large items, but it makes fine, sturdy shopping bags. French seamed and all, for extra sturdiness and because the linen frays like you wouldn’t believe (principally, I think, because the samples aren’t cut as plumb as they might be and, in order to get the maximum bang for buck, I’ve cut with sides aligned rather than grain aligned). The dozen or so egg cartons fitted beautifully.