You can probably see where I'm going with this. My severe lack of sewing ability has been well-documented, not only in my family and my old Home Ecomonics class in middle school but also on this blog. It's a fact, though not a pretty one. Still despite this flaw in my character, occasionally there are things that require repair which normally cause me to ever so reluctantly haul out my so-called sewing box.
I thought this would be another of those times. I have this pair of light blue shorts you see. Well technically I suppose they aren't shorts at all. But they aren't long pants either. They are something in the middle and I roll them up to just below the knee. Two hundreds years ago they would have been called knee-britches and men wore them. Now, I'm not sure they are called, clam diggers maybe? Regardless of what they are called, I am fond of them. They are loose and comfy and a little sloppy which is just my style. Especially in the summertime.
A while back, while taking a walk I tripped over something. It might have been an uneven or cracked sidewalk , it could have been a twig or a loose pebble, it may have been my own big feet or a particularly lumpy bit of air. It doesn't really matter. The point is I went flailing, out of control through the air and up against a fence. I wasn't injured at all and in fact barely noticed that it happened. (It's not an uncommon occurrence, after all) except that the fence was clearly the sort that eats trousers. I continued my walk with a small tear in my comfy blue long shorts (or whatever they are called). Dang.
It was a relatively small tear and I thought maybe nobody would notice. Except of course, everyone did. Every doggone time wore them after that, someone would mention it. It was always very polite. Something along the line of, "Of dear, look there, you have a little tear in your shorts." Followed by the advice, "You need to sew that up now before it gets any bigger". Trepidation would then strike and my blood would begin to chill at the mere thought of tackling such a project. So I stopped wearing them.
What is the point, I asked myself one day, of owning shorts if you aren't going to wear them. I had to decide. Am I going to fix them? Or am I going to throw them out. I couldn't bring myself to throw out a pair of perfectly good shorts with only one small tear. Which meant that now I had to fix it. Dang. I considered it at length. The colour thread required, the best way to sew it without leaving a pucker or three hundred yards of knotted up stitching, which is my usual style. Do I sew it from the back or from the front? I felt, quite honestly, like an engineer approaching a singularly difficult river crossing solution.
Tim was the one who suggested to me that I try an iron-on patch. One on the inside of the pants and one on the outside. Brilliant! I am in favour of any solution that does not require actual sewing. Off we went to Jo-Anne fabrics.
Now I must interject here that I adore walking around fabric stores. I love the colours and the patterns and the textures. The weight and the sheen and the intricate embroidery delight me. It is a feast for the eyes and the imagination. That's as far as it goes, you realize, I cannot actually create anything with any of these stunning fabrics but I love them all. I am wowed by the buttons, enchanted by the rainbow of thread choices, and mystified by most of the implements arrayed before me. So I'm not in a place that makes me uncomfortable at all when I'm in a fabric store. Instead, I'm like a happy visitor to a foreign land :)
Tim found the small plain iron-on patches for me right away. And I agreed that would be a great idea for the inside patch. But I knew I didn't want some square piece of random iron-on fabric on the outside of the shorts for all the world to see. No, if I'm going to be sporting an iron-on patch that is visible, it's going to be a pretty one. So the search continued. Finally we found that section in the crafts area. There were dozens to choose from. I didn't want anything sparkly (although I like sparkly, these shorts would not benefit from sparkle) and I didn't want anything with skulls or superhero's on it (just not my style) so I finally settled on the small pastel bugs in the middle photo above. One of those would be a perfect fit I was sure. They maybe weren't pretty but they are darned cute. I can live with cute.
Once home, I set up the ironing board and read all of the directions multiple times. I cut the inside patch to the correct size, turned the shorts inside out then, taking a deep breath, pressed it on, as per the instructions. It looked good. Then I turned the pants right side out, chose my patch and carefully, and thoroughly pressed it into place as well, again according to instructions. Not bad! That was easy! I was so pleased with the results that I decided to wear the pants the very next day.
Actually looks kind of cute right? I was so tickled with myself. All right! Bring on the torn garments, I can fix those now without drawing blood even one time! Awesome!
Toward dinner time I noticed that the cute little outside patch was missing.
I understand how I can be bad at sewing. It's a skill after all. Not every person has every skill. But this was an iron-on patch. I even read the instructions and what's more, I followed them to the letter! What the actual heck?? How can a person be bad a ironing on a patch for heaven's sakes.
Sigh. So I am back to debating. Do I try another patch? Wear them with just the inside patch on and ignore the outside? Do I attempt to sew the outside? Or do I give up entirely throw the pants away?
I honestly do not know.
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.