A few months back Craft Magazine and Singer Sewing Machines sponsored a “Crafting with Nature Contest.” All you had to do was use a sewing machine in your creation and somehow incorporate nature. I was all kinds of excited and came up with the idea of a sort of Advent calendar, but for spring. I thought it would be an awesome way to teach kids to observe the world around them as spring came, that it would be easily customizable for different families and geographic locations, etc.
Now, before I show the pictures, you have to be aware that I had NEVER, EVER used a sewing machine before. Never.
So, I drew a sketch of what I wanted and brain-stormed ideas and I got my husband to take me to several craft/fabric stores. I picked up a few fat quarters to use for a background of ground, mountains, and sky, some felt for the tree trunk and leaves, etc., and some backing fabric, along with velcro to attach the leaves, etc.
Then I started work.
Did I mention I had never used a sewing machine before? And that I hate measuring things? And that the only thing I failed in kindergarten was cutting a straight line with scissors? Also, fabric markers don’t work on felt (at least not when I’m trying to do it). I discovered that little tidbit the night before the deadline. Thus the suck-tastic paper tags hot-glue gunned to the felt leaves. They say things like “first leaves,” or “first flowers.” I should have added “first indication that Shoveling Ferret sucks at this and should give up.”
Here you can see the lovely border, sewn with seams that are no where near straight, and with lovely gaps between pieces because I suck. I can’t even blame this on my hand tremors. This is just total unadulterated FAIL.
I feel I should note here that I am fiercely proud of the little felt froggie. Look at the awesome embroidered eye, complete with a little white speck to show eye-shine.
In any case, if you go to the flickr links for these photos, you can see my hilarious attempt to spin my multiplicity of FAILS into advantages – the screwed up seams are totally organic and um, stuff…
Needless to say, I did not win. (Yes, I was crazy enough to go ahead and enter the whole mess hoping for pity points, I guess.) At all. I think I may actually have accrued FAIL points for any future contests I might enter. It’s probably a good thing I didn’t win. I would have then had to explain that no, I’m not actually a toddler, so, no, this isn’t actually really amazing considering…
I did have fun though. I have yet to return to my sewing machine, but I will and look forward to it. Hopefully it won’t turn out quite this badly.