Monday, 19 March 2012

lost

I've been limping along here with intermittent posts but I have to admit I've completely lost my blogging mojo.

It started quite some while ago, when someone close to me let slip that they had stopped reading my blog after feeling I had criticised them on it. At the time I was dumbstruck. The slight had been unintentional and I had remained oblivious to their reaction for months. I felt awful, and upset with myself, and upset with them for simply being offended without checking in with me.

I spent a lot of time thinking about it.

About the rights and wrongs of it, both mine and theirs.

About why I blog and what it means.

About how I use the blog to record events but also process how I feel about things.

About being honest and the consequences of honesty.

About the blogosphere and manners.

About real life and manners.

And while I think I did nothing wrong, that I behaved reasonably, that I use the blog in an entirely defensible way, I just can't muster enthusiasm to share what's in my head in the wake of these revelations.

I can post about the stuff I make because that's safe and inoffensive - except even then a comment can bring to mind the same thoughts. Thoughts about how people feel in relation to what I post. I'm just not comfortable with it. And more reflective posts - like this one here - feel like a high wire act.

I considered shutting the blog completely when it happened, but that felt really wrong too. Like an over reaction or a misplaced and rash response I would later regret. But it now feels a bit like the blog is dying of its own accord. The impulse to blog is mostly gone, and when it comes it is generally accompanied by a string of doubts and negative thoughts.

I'm really sad about that. About losing the joy the blog has always given me.

I've been blogging for seven years now and I just love having the in depth record of the minutiae of everyday life at my disposal. Sometimes when I am searching for something from the past a search string will bring up posts I have entirely forgotten and I can get lost rediscovering the days and months as I captured them.

So I'm not saying it's over. Maybe that desire to speak will return. I hope so. But for now I'm going to stop topping every to do list with write a blog post and face up to the reality of the shift that's taken place for me.

Perhaps it's time too to open other doors and think differently about writing, maybe return to how I felt about writing before the internet or perhaps just have some time to read or think, unencumbered by words.

It all feels very uncertain.

I'm not sure where I am at or where I am going and while that's not a comfortable feeling and there's sadness and fear in there, I am reminding myself that change is, in general, a friend. I have to look past all the bits that feel new and unfamiliar and remind myself that change is a process not a destination and I've been through it many times before.

Whatever comes next by its very definition can't be seen from here, but its bound to be good. Maybe it'll all be so exciting I'll feel the need to blog about it.

Sunday, 4 March 2012

recovery

Last weekend was craft camp, this weekend the school fete.

There's been a lot of making, organising, coordinating and reflecting.

And after a 12 hour shift on fete day - 12 straight hours of standing and talking and lifting and serving and setting up and packing up without even a single toilet break - there's been two solid days of recovery. I've never felt quite so shattered without the involvement of alcohol, drugs or emergency medical care.

And I took no photos on fete day, or even any photos of the wares I made to stock the handmade stall that I coordinate. [Though I admit to a quiet gratification that all the linen aprons I made, all the linen tea towels I printed, all the Japanese style wrist bags I made and all the scarves I knit sold.]

I have finally taken some photos of the craft camp wares (minus the aforementioned fete stuff that I spent a whole craft camp day making).

Bags and hats for the kids featuring fabrics received in a kids printing swap
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A downsized version of the Tessuti favourite 'our fave top' for Amy in a fabric she's been hassling me to make up for her for months.
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Some work pants for me in a two way stretch woven cotton
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And a skirt in cotton elastine, with circular motif pocket and patch featuring my current obsessionally favourite colour orange.
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It compliments my grorange shawl, finally finished and much loved.
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I finally used up this fine black and white stripe knit I've been holding onto for a while and was overjoyed to realise there was enough for both a short sleeve T with shirred details,
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And a giant oversized long sleeve top with a very long and bulky cowly neck.
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Another zippy toiletries bag from crumpler scraps to take my swim shower stuff in.
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I also finally got around to sewing myself a leather bag too. Uncharacteristically for me, who in general fits into the cut first ask questions later category of sewists, I spent a lot of one day sitting staring at the leather, cutting pieces up, stitching them then sitting staring at them a bit more. In the end I opted for the simplest shape and construction I could possibly manage to cut down on the opportunities for the difficulties of sewing leather to impact on the end result.
It has my customary complicated interior pocket organisation, but the outer is cut entirely in a single piece from a lovely thick but soft hide.
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I'm very happy with this one, I love the size and shape and there's just a few imperfections to keep me humble. I haven't started using it yet, since my last bag hasn't actually fallen to bits but it's very nice to have a new bag just waiting in the wings for when it does.

I will also be perpetually amused and heartened by the process of making it, and the involvement of others as I thought out loud about different ways to go with it. I'll also remember with great fondness a certain inventiveness about substituting for the template plastic I didn't have for the base.

It is in fact the quintessential craft camp project - too involved and large scale to be tackled easily at home, with both learning and a bit of teaching involved, so much the more polished and well executed for the discussion of details with others, a bit of improv demanded at the last minute, and something that has a real ta da! I made it! wow! about it.