Christmas morning, 1988. My step-dad surprised our family with matching jammies he had sewn himself. Long after their divorce, I regretted not learning how to sew myself, for the memory of his gesture has never left my mind.
At 15, I left for an all-girls boarding school where one might assume I would have learned the home economics trade, but alas, it was solely academically focused and the opportunity continued to evade me.
Fast-forward through college and my first career as a teacher, beyond my wedding and the birth of my four daughters and as much as I wanted to, I still had not learned how to sew.
It took the interest of my eldest daughter to force my hand. First, she attended workshops, then week-long camps and finally, we attended a mother-daughter class together. For her 8th birthday she received a sewing machine, table, fabric and patterns but she still needs assistance and on my limited knowledge I have felt unqualified to help her.
Her sister’s 7th birthday is this fall and as a budding artist, we are having a painting party: cue, the need for a home-sewn art smock.
I searched the internet high and low until I came across the most perfect little art smock that you ever did see, INCLUDING a free pattern. You can find it here: https://blog.spoonflower.com/2020/04/diy-childs-art-smock/.
My eldest and I ventured on to Joann Fabrics to explore fabric options. Her first time there, she was like a kid in a candy shop!
Spontaneously, we decided to visit my mother-in-law the following weekend. She is a master seamstress, capable of anything from zipper and cushion repairs to quilts and curtains. After mentioning our project in passing, she offered to help. Why hadn’t I thought of this before??
Within hours we had cut the pattern and started to sew.
Our design was reversible with pockets on either side and after much finagling we tried it on our 4 year-old model and here she is!
Better late than never, right?
Life is never too far gone to try something new and I. am. living. proof.
Better late than never.