This summer marks the 50th anniversary of my learning to sew. I learned to sew because I am a farm girl. It was an essential part of the education, as was cooking, gardening, and gathering eggs. The first seven years of sewing were painful and tedious to me, because I wanted to be reading or wandering the fields and orchard. But I had good teachers: mother Juanita, Grandma Alice, sister Phyllis, and Aunt Helen. For these women, I give thanks.
Today I am using a simple straight stitch on a quilted garden. I remember many years ago finally falling in love with a simple straight stitch when I conquered an understanding of garment construction. The ability to make and mend clothes was an essential element in my personal economy.
Today I am love with the simple stitch all over again. It gives me power to communicate. My art can tell a story or evoke an emotion. And there is a new set of women who consistently persist in encouraging my stitching: Emily, Donna, Marsha, Mary Ann, Mary Lois, Paula, and Joyce. In these women, I rejoice.
Today I stitch.