I think I'm going to pen one of those annoying-yet-inexplicably-best-selling books of banal life "philosophy" gleaned from an everyday activity. Mine will be about learning to sew, something I have wanted to do for a long time and embarked upon solo this past holiday weekend. Here are the things I have learned thus far:
1. When a pattern suggests a certain fabric, they mean it. This is not the place to get creative when you're on your very first project and start substituting, say, velvet for cotton.
2. Machinery with fast-moving needles is scary. In retrospect, it seems that a) this may seem rather intuitive and b) I'm not actually too smart.
3. There are no shortcuts in sewing. There is no room for laziness or impatience. You will pay for it all later, in sweat, in tears, in waste, in cash. Thus, why I'm doing it is a mystery.
4. As with most crafts, a $10 nightgown will wind up costing you $75 when all is said and done. And it will be a crappy-looking, ill-fitting $75 nightgown.
5. The cutting lines are not suggestions. Cut something wrong and the game is over. OVER!
6. If you're already in constant neck pain, craning over a table, a sewing machine, a help book will not help.
7. I am unequal to it all.
On a completely separate note -- and the perfect one for distracting me from the sewing supply explosion that has taken over our dining room -- my new camera arrived in the mail today. It is a Powershot S3 IS (thanks to Thomas for the suggestion) and is the perfect upgrade from my consumer point-n-click to something with more serious potential.
It feels giant compared to my previous pocket model and it has a zillion controls that I hope to learn to use but is also pretty easy to set to Auto and get great results. The package I ordered it with also comes with a telephoto lens, a wide angle lens and some lens filters so if I ever figure out what all those mean, let alone how to use them, it could make for some beautiful pics.
Right now I'm digging the macro setting, which lets me take useless pictures of things very close up. All of the flowers in our garden are now feeling a complete loss of their privacy. But the results are stunning! So come visit me soon so I can take your picture!
Also, email me if you know how to miter lace....