Thursday, November 02, 2006

Oh Yes, I've Been Here Before

Wow, this "every day" thing really comes up and smacks you in the head, doesn't it?

I have posted before about how NSBR and I are just ten seconds ahead of the trends, not enough so that anyone will actually believe us when our new crazes become nationwide. Not that it matters. And our information about what's new, what's in, what's hot is based on the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, not even the Village Voice or anything (well, occasionally the Voice), not even Daily Candy (well, occasionally...).

But I digress. This summer the New York Times ran a story called, basically, "Supermodels Able to Drink More Rose than Cosmos and it's still pink!" No, it was called "Rose the hot drink for summer." Anyway, I showed it to my father, pleased because R. and I had two prized bottles of rose we bought on our Napa trip (we suspected we had risen in the esteem of the pourers when we agreed to taste the rose. We're the kind of people who care if the pourer admires our taste.) And pleased because H. (R's sister) and S. (her husband) had been ordering assorted case lots of rose all summer and sharing most of it with us. "Look, rose wine is hot this summer," I said to my father, and he, with the social anxiety of working-class origins and an unshakable Baby Boomer suspicion of pink wine, said, "I don't think so."

But I continue to digress. I can't link to it because the online Journal is subscriber-only, but the WSJ had a story yesterday, "It's Hip to Hem: Sewing Makes a Comeback." And I am proud to report that I went right through that trend and came out the other side, long ago.

I like knitting, although I have several scarves languishing in various rooms of the house right now, and I have not graduated beyond scarves and hats to anything resembling the shaping skills of a sweater or even the stick-to-it-iveness of a blanket. I like the idea of sewing, and it is handy to have a machine and be able to run things through it--if, for instance, you like making felt Christmas stockings for all the new babies in your family, or even if you are sorry you ever opened that can of adorable felt worms, it's better to sew most parts of them than to glue everything. I like the idea of sewing, but can't bear very much of the reality of it.

I felt vaguely guilty about this until my mother began to plan her retirement. S. said, "Guess what! Nana says after she retires she's going to teach me to sew!" "That's great, honey," I replied, and it took a few days for it to really sink in, but one day I was driving by myself and I suddenly thought, Now I do not have to learn to sew, just in order to teach S. to sew! It had been weighing on me more heavily than I realized. I'm off the hook, I thought with increasing excitement. With any luck, by the time my mother no longer wants to hem the occasional pair of pants for me, S. will be able to do it, my mind continued evilly. S. has many sterling qualities I lack, and I think she may actually take to sewing.

Here's why I can't and won't do it:

1) My machine is old and quirky, and I'm not about to buy another one and then not use it.
2) There's no good fabric at the national chains, and the Mom-and-Pops are going out of business right and left. I hear there's good fabric in the city, but basically you get what you pay for, and meanwhile I could be paying for the labor, too.
3) Do you know how many sleeves you have to set in, and zippers, and long seams you sew and then discover one piece is facing wrong side out, before you get good? Too many. A person could be writing. Or reading. Or cooking. Playing the piano...

Here's why I don't believe it's a trend:

Most women in this town don't even make dinner (reportedly). They're going to make clothes?

I do make curtains. A cat could do that.

No comments: