Tuesday, 15 April 2008

I Hope it Fits

I've spent the last two days making a dress for my ex-mother-in-law. Because of some fitting issues and specific colour requirements, she couldn't find a dress to wear to her youngest daughter's wedding at the end of May. So when I was in Utah in March, she gave me her favorite dress (so I could copy it) and the fabric for the new dress and I brought them back to Canada with me.

They have been put aside until this week when the kids are out of school. My kids can help me with the kids I tend during the day so I can get some sewing time in. So I have no pattern other than the old dress and both the old dress and the new fabric are rather slippery. It has made for an interesting and frustrating project, but once I hem it tomorrow, I'll be done and I can get it into the mail. Then I just cross my fingers and pray it will fit her perfectly and she'll love it.

Even though I've tried, I can't think of any way to relate the experience to writing. I haven't had much time to work on my own projects. I guess I was too focused on the task at hand but once it's on its way to Utah, I can concentrate again on my own work. There are just times when the writing has to get put aside because life gets in the way, but without the experiences life offers us, what would we write about anyway?


Janette Rallison said...

Wow, you are one nice and talented ex-daughter-in-law. I can't even sew with a pattern. But you're right, so many of my real life experiences have worked their way into my writing. This one might make it it into one of your books someday. (It immediately makes the character sympathetic.)

Marsha Ward said...

Stephanie, I think you can draw a parallel between the necessity of working on your sewing project and needing to take a step back from your writing project to let your mind find out where it all fits.

You mentioned previously that you might need to go back a few chapters and start your characters on a different path. Have you interviewed them? Let them tell you where they would go, given the chance to set off on their own. It's amazing what happens when we listen to our characters.

Ronda Hinrichsen said...

How about this as a way to relate it to writing:
Sometimes we have a pattern--rules, guidelines, etc.,--to follow, and someties we don't, but either way, when it comes right down to it, when we write, we are simply making something beautiful from what we've been given.
BTW, I agree with Janette. You ARE an awesome ex-daughter-in-law. Oh, and now that I've met you in person, I can see how much your beautiful pencil drawing of you on this site looks like you.

Stephanie Humphreys said...

Thanks for all the great advice. The biggest problem with letting the characters tell me where they want to go is my husband starts to think I'm a little crazy. :)

He could be right...

Annette Lyon said...

I think I would have lost my mind in your shoes. I tried making Easter dresses out of pink satin for my girls one year. Never, ever again. Slippery fabric is a nightmare!

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