Summer in Chicago usually wears it’s party dress. But this year it forgot to have it sanitized…We all know why!
I won’t even use the word, it’s now become an adjective/verb vs noun
It describes a type of living that was unimaginable even 5 months ago
It’s the action required to determine any activity outside of our home
Whatever the case, it’s defining our Chicago summer
Summer in Chicago means Farmer’s Markets, patio dining, the lake shore, the dog beach, Shakespeare in the Park, free concerts, tourists, (which I don’t miss) Cubs games, and flowers. It’s when we escape from our winter confinement and the spring rains to become happy faced human beings who tolerate traffic, express our inner child and show our faces to the sun.
It’s also KWA season at church. Usually we’d be in the thick of things, gearing up for dress rehearsals, creating extra costumes, tweaking ones we thought were finished and living in each other’s pockets while we do it. The workshop would be buzzing with the hum of busy bees doing things they didn’t imagine doing only weeks before, if ever.
Creativity for days
Instead, KWA (Kids Week of Adventure) is on hold this year. Church hasn’t begun to gather again, (I can only imagine the meetings about how to accomplish that gargantuan feat), and for now, life is still almost as stagnant as it was with the exception of using the backyard more often, the occasional patio dining and shopping behind masks.
Masks are in all our cars and at the doors so we can be “safe”
As much as I’ve enjoyed the mask business, I HATE wearing one! I can’t say it enough. It’s amazingly limiting and I find I can’t breathe well, even in my own which are the very best ones ever made.
Since Bruce was laid off, many ideas for survival have been tossed in the hat. Blessedly, he found a contract that will provide well, possibly till retirement but minimally for 6 months. But one of the ideas that has grown legs is the idea of my own business
Sewing is a skill I learned at the age of 16, from my mother. She enjoyed making dresses for her girls, and gifts for her grands. I have always thought my mom was a natural creative that never had the proper encouragement.
The first garment I made for myself had a zipper in it. I installed it 3 times before it was correct and I remember my mom’s chuckle every time she pointed out my errors. First time, inside out, 2nd upside down, 3rd was finally right. I should have framed the item (I think it was a dress), somewhere along the way it vanished.
My grandmother on dad’s side was also a seamstress (that’s what we called them back in the day). She enjoyed making me dresses for school each year. At least 3 or so, I want to say it was one for each day but I’m fast reaching an age where my memories aren’t so precise.
My dad is a machinist by trade. He’s always considered his abilities a gift, one that allowed him to enjoy his life’s work. I’ve wondered many times if I were born male would I have also enjoyed his trade? In ways, fitting pattern pieces together requires similar kinds of skills.
My mother’s aunt was an accomplished quilter and tailor. During the depression she took in alterations and dressmaking as a business. Quilting she did for the pleasure of it, but it also provided warm blankets for the home. Quilts used to be useful more than artistic.
So, as you can see, my skills come through a long lineage of inherited talent!
I am blessed
Mask sewing is what began this venture. While Bruce was having heart surgery, I sewed. While Bruce was in ICU, I sewed. While Bruce took his first recovery steps, I sewed.
It kept me sane
Now that Pinterest and the online community live, crafting of any kind holds a wealth of support. Patterns, techniques, videos, fabrics, blogs and IG feeds are life.
It’s dang close to what I imagine heaven will be!
At first the business idea was simply an outlet for my own creative skills to find a landing pad. After the layoff it took on significance. Now it holds the potential to pay our property taxes and support our health benefits.
So for all my followers, please check out my FB page, CindaSews. A website with details, photos, services, products and teaching to help and encourage fellow sewist (that’s what we call them today) is in development. I’ll announce it when it’s ready. And for those of you who’ve already supported my early endeavors,
In the meantime,
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