Over the Summer I made a note to self about trying out sewing with rope. We have all seen rope baskets before, and I really love the look + feel of them. But I had never thought to sew with rope until I saw Erin's basket and watched the trailer to Nicole Blum's CreativeBug class. "Yes, I can!" I said, and onto the shortlist it went.
Fast forward to this past weekend when I was at the hardware store picking up clamps and wood glue to repair the dollhouse. I spotted clotheslines in an unassuming bin and picked up one. Later when I had time to try it out, my first thought was to create a bread basket. But as I fiddled with it and hastily stitched, a kidney shape started to form. What resulted is an oblong dish which is really cool, even if it is not exactly what I originally had in mind. As I pondered the dish, rather than be disappointed in what it turned out to be, I filled it with the gingko leaves we have been collecting during strolls in the village and it became more than it had been moments before. That made me think for quite a while.
I could tell you "the rope decided it wanted to be a dish," but that would be a euphemism - truth be told, I did not think through the engineering behind my original concept prior to beginning to stitch. There was no plan, just an idea and blind hope, and that can get you only so far. To be sure, there is a definite finesse required for this, but one also needs a tremendous amount of self-discipline to meditate on the process at hand and be in the moment. I truly wanted to learn from what I had done and made the connection to throwing on a potter's wheel; you really have to focus on the task at hand or your vision can lose its way.
Like so many things in life, you need to approach it with intention.
Lesson learned, I created a goodly-sized conical bowl with the remainder of the 30m clothesline. It began with a coaster-sized foundation and I worked up at a slight angle from there. Adding stripes to the outside was a simple as changing out the bobbins a few times. This was a challenge to make - not the sewing, but rather having to focus and devote my full attention to one thing. (And I can always use a refresher course on that.) I appreciate learning new meditative practices like this that I can add to my arsenal of ways to quiet my mind and focus. Yet another benefit of making things by hand. More of these to be made in my lifetime, and more lessons to be learned in the process. Of that I am sure. xoxo