Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Lost Arts of the Home

I am constantly discovering how little children today know of simple things that I thought were part of daily life.  These are the little acts that form a homemaker.  Whether it is sewing or knitting, cooking or cleaning, many people in today's society are at a loss when faced with doing such things themselves (more so with the sewing and the like.)  Too few children are taught the art of a needle and thread, and this teaching is so sorely neglected that when a person can sew, they are viewed as a miracle worker.  

The art of sewing is a very simple one to learn, so simple that you can learn and then teach your children. I highly recommend instructing all of your children, girls and boys, in the proper usage of a needle and thread because at some point they will have a snag in their socks or a rip in their jeans.  If they know how to sew, they can easily remedy the disrepair.  Go through the basic steps of threading a needle (not as easy as it may seem), basic stitches (mainly the running stitch), and the numerous uses for sewing.

If your children are interested, further their knowledge-base by introducing them to the sewing machine.  My sisters and I have spent many long hours stitching away at doll clothes, blankets, or fancy dresses for ourselves.  The ability to create a wearable work of art from a pile of fabric and a pattern is a wonderful but sadly neglected skill.  If you know how to sew but haven't for a long while, try it again.  Pass it on to your children.  If you don't know how to sew, make sure to take it slow.  Don't start off your lessons trying to concoct a velvet cloak or a three-piece suit.  Such valiant efforts will come in time, but if you begin with such grand plans, you will most likely become extremely discouraged.

A final note: Your seam ripper is your friend.  It is no fun to rip out stitches and re-do them, but you will thank yourself in the long run when the finished project looks 10 times better.  Don't be afraid to start over and backtrack.  Take it slow, and make sure you read the directions very carefully.  Also, most patterns require a bit of common sense (or not so common, depending on the pattern.)  Read the instructions and try until you figure out what works.  Most things don't sound like they should work when they are explained out loud, but once you follow the directions, everything tends to work itself out beautifully.

1 comment:

  1. I am constantly discovering how young children today know simple things that I thought they were part of everyday life.

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