So, I am sitting here eating Cheetos with chopsticks, doesn’t everyone eat them this way, and I have been thinking about the way my passion/business has developed over the years into what it is today. When you look backwards, you can usually clearly see how you ended up where you are today. Wish it was that clear from the beginning. Sure would make life a lot easier, but probably a bit less fun and entertaining…anyway…
Many years ago, I won’t divulge how many, I began sewing for hire, making mostly clothing items and tailoring. This was really not my idea of a job that I wanted to have long term, but it was something to do to make ends meet. I knew I wanted to sew, that was my passion, but clothing (especially for others) was not. Then came the bunny craze of the 80’s.
Remember these? I started making these in the 80’s and still have not stopped. These rabbits now fall into a category called “softies” and I really wish I knew how many I have actually created. The thing I loved about making the rabbits was that I could add personality to them by the way I embroidered their faces and the clothing I dressed them in. So, it was clear, even back then, that I wanted to create softies and other more creative home items with my sewing skills.
Fast forward to today. My passion for sewing has never dwindled. The things I create today, though, have become more specialized and my focus has narrowed quite a bit. Today, I make mostly quilts, pillows and softies for clients who have either lost a loved one, or have clothing (or other fiber items) that they want to preserve. I now consider myself a Memory Maker.
Clients will send me their (or their loved one’s) clothing items and I will dismantle and then rework those items into a memory piece that can be cherished and handed down to future generations. I love this work, because it allows me to create something special and unique on a daily basis. I have made many t-shirt quilts for graduates, pillows for those a beloved family member has left behind, and even a doggie softie out of a departed dog’s sweaters. Every client presents me with a blank canvas and the materials to create a one of a kind item for them. The other, and equally as important, thing that I love about this job is that it usually brings tears of joy to each client as they open the newly crafted items. The memories come rushing back and are preserved in some small part by this tangible item they now can hold close.
At the time of this writing, I have completed two t-shirt quilts in the last two weeks, have several memory pillow and softie Christmas orders in the queue for clients, and have all of my mother-in-law’s “quilts in progress,” that I am working toward completing for family. To say my life is busy is obviously an understatement, but it is also quite wonderful to have settled in this place with this passion.
What is your passion?