Pins and Needles

2 February 2019

My left knee has a decade old scar I got from crawling around in the kitchen when I was barely capable of standing. The scar on my right wrist came from stuffing my hand into a peanut can and pulling it out too quickly and too close to the edge. My legs are dressed in an assortment of cuts, scrapes, and scratches that came from years of poking my nose to find out what was in that tree, over that hill, or atop that rock outcrop. Curiosity will forever and always get the best of me.

In the lifelong search to know the how and why of everything, a deep desire to create using this knowledge overcame me. It was an afternoon more than ten years ago that I asked my mother to teach me how to sew, and being the persistent child I was, she put down whatever she was doing to show me the basics. I had found my niche. Soon the house was full of oddly shaped new friends and their pillows, often stuffed with socks because it was all I had at hand. But that wasn’t enough to satisfy me. I begged my mother to let me use the sewing machine but in her better judgment, she doused my ambition for I was too young and too excited to work a machine whose sole purpose is to rotate a fine needle.
Over the course of years, I worked with my hands, cutting Father’s old shirts and frustrating myself when I couldn’t get my projects to come out quite as I had envisioned. The discipline engrained from eight years of Catholic school couple with the same eight taking Taikashink, a Japanese style of martial arts, kept with me. The first time I walked into a fabric store my mother quickly lost me among the satin, fleece, cotton, and crushed velvet.
When I was finally old enough to get my hands on Mother’s sewing machine, I knew I had found a friend with a very unique personality. Some days it would behave and others it would rip to shred the fabric I spent an hour or more carefully cutting. Despite the anger I had with this machine, I learned what made it work and tamed the beast within my Singer Athena. My free time is still consumed with finding new projects and examining clothing to see just how it was put together, and also how I could do it better. With every new project, I learn a different way to do the same thing, bringing me one step closer to perfecting my art.
My passion for sewing has gone beyond my home and has come to the point where just a walk down the street has me examining people’s clothing and trying to mentally reconstruct how it could have been made. I enjoy the challenge in taking characters from novels, games, and movies that have signature costumes and designing actual ways to put them together. When I attended the New York Comic Convention, I stopped and questioned anyone who had an interesting costume about where they got the fabric for their accessories and how they perfected the detailing. It is an intention of mine to learn as much as possible from as many people as possible to feed my curiosity and better my abilities in order to find useful applications.

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