Friday, February 04, 2011

Good Enough

What does the phrase "Good Enough" mean to you? Does it conjure thoughts of someone who has tried their best and knows when to stop or do you think that good enough is never enough, there's always room for improvement?
I had asked Five to clean up a mess that he had made. He got most of it but missed a few small pieces. I told him "Good enough" and let him leave the room. Afterwards I wondered if i had just communicated to him that it's okay to not do the job to full completion and if I should have insisted that he get even the little pieces. I try to emphasize effort more than performance. I don't care if he didn't succeed at something as long as I know he tried his best and had a good attitude about it. I used to think that I had had to do everything right. If I missed a day of devotions, I'd do 2 the next day to make up for it. I'd end up getting so behind that there was no hope of catching up so I'd give up on doing it at all for weeks or months. Then I'd start again, determined not to miss a day but of course it would happen inevitably and I'd feel like a failure.
Perfection affects my crafting as well. I'll buy a pattern I like and later get intimidated by it and think I can't do it justice so it sits in my drawer, untouched. Or I'll keep adding and adding to a project, trying to make it better. Or rip something out and try again 3, 4, 5 times when the reality is that anyone else that looked at it would probably see nothing wrong with it, it just wasn't exactly what I wanted. I've been finding myself saying "good enough" more often recently and it's like a load is lifted off my shoulders. I used to apologize when giving a gift if it wasn't perfect and point out the mistakes and say how I should have done it better. I've realized that 1. people are just grateful for the gift and don't care if it's not perfect and 2. chances are, they won't even notice if I don't point it out to them.
After thinking all of this through, I felt good about telling him that what he had done was "good enough". I don't ever want him to think "Nothing I do is good enough so I'm not going to bother to try." I have seen this happen to children when their parents or teachers were overly critical and demanded perfection of them and it is devastating.
I apologize for the lack of posts. Life has been busy and the sewing room/sunroom is not weather proofed very well so it's really cold out there. I'm trying not to run our electricity bill way up by running the space heater constantly so I haven't been out there much since finishing my class. In fact, I still haven't hemmed a pair of pants that I got for Christmas! I'm hoping for a warm spring so I can get back out there and sew some more.

Anna Q

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Pillowcase Dress

I love the look of these dresses and finally decided to make one. I didn't have any pillowcases that were cute enough to use for a dress that I was willing to cut up. So I just picked some fabric from my stash, sewed a tube, and hemmed the bottom. This is approximately size 6, but could easily fit a smaller girl due to the adjustable straps. It would end up a couple inches below her knee instead of right at the knee like the rest of my size 4 and 5 dresses. It could also be used by bigger girls as a top or over pants. The adjustable straps are about 10" long so there's a lot of room for growth.

I used these directions that I found from a swagbucks search. Her instructions are really easy to follow. (I copied them into a Word document if anyone's interested so it prints out on only 1 page.)

Traditional pillowcase dresses make a casing on the top front and top back and thread the ties through these casings. This can create a strangulation hazard, however, so I like her way of doing it better. She inserts an elastic into each casing, sewing it in place at each end. Then either make a casing for each armhole and thread the ties through the casings or sew on double fold bias tape, extending by 10" at each end to make the ties.

I didn't bother to print out the instructions so by mistake I made the elastics 9" each instead of 6". I think it works anyways (I'm certainly not about to rip it out to fix it!)

I feel like it needs something. Maybe I should have enclosed the hem in the double fold bias tape too? Or does the fabric have enough detail that the dress doesn't need anything else added to it?

I also made a sewing apron which turned out awesome. I'll take pics and post soon.

p.s. I do not take credit for the colour of my kitchen wall. That was our landlord's mother's choice. Definitely not mine.