I Can’t Sew Worth a Lick

…something my late grandfather would not be thrilled about. Although he was a tailor by profession, it wasn’t bestowed upon any of the male siblings except to my aunt who no doubt studied by his side. Growing up under the occupation of the Germans where jeeps and trucks rumbled through the rugged terrain in a village of the Peloponnese was not what you would consider fun times. Who wants a fine tailored suit when food was scarce? The rich soils of Hellas laden with olive trees were omnipresent of course, however, unlike when I grew up where this golden culinary prize was found bountifully on every table, back in those not-so-good-old-days especially in Athens away from villages and the direct connections to farmers, options were limited…one of the many unfortunate outcomes of war. Harvest celebrations of Mother Nature’s marvel, fresh pressed extra virgin olive oil, were not experienced during these callused times. While my grandfather was a forward thinker and after lessons learned from WWI, he stockpiled food so they were one of the lucky ones who didn’t worry about their next meal. Another aunt of mine, on the other hand who grew up in Athens, still cringes at the thought of eating dark, dry rationed bread that was their staple without even a measly olive to accompany it. While she doesn’t go to bed hungry anymore, she as well as my uncles have chosen professions in the white collar industry rather than ensue in their father’s footsteps. How was this skill lost completely in my family? Not a single one of my cousins or siblings sew, nor were we ever exposed to it growing up in Athens or in the States. The closest I encountered to the trait was scuttling a heap of clothes down the street to Mrs. B’s nest, where she was always swamped with sewing tasks from the neighbors. SONY DSCSONY DSC Home economics didn’t exist in my school, back then the arts were not emphasized as a part of learning and the idea of how to run a family environment and make the world a better place for generations to come was a dwindling discipline. Today educators see the power of the arts in learning as well as achieving optimal and sustainable living for individuals, families and communities, however, due to cutbacks we witness less and less of the arts and home ecology in our education system. Don’t even get me started with that rant and how we stand on the future of this country! In any case, here is my attempt at sewing. It’s more pseudo sewing–okay I completely cheated and used a fabric glue. Since the project didn’t look complete…I had no choice but to resort to needle and thread along the edge of the fabric. What do you think?SONY DSCSONY DSC SONY DSC

Is there a skill you had always hoped you learned? Give it a shot and see what you can transpire in your nest. Happy skill honing!

6 thoughts on “I Can’t Sew Worth a Lick

  1. Those are fantastic. They bring so much character to the room. It is a shame they’ve gotten rid of home ec in schools. Both boys and girls benefit from it. My boys went to a Montessori school, and as such, they participated in cooking special meals and learned to sew and that kind of thing (in addition to what I’ve taught them at home). Of course, now that they’re teenagers, they’ll have nothing to do with it, but it’s nice to know that got some exposure. And, when my oldest teen wants his favorite dish of pasta with olive oil and herbs, he knows how to make it himself. Of course, it’s about the only thing he can make besides Ramen noodles, but at least it’s something. 🙂


    • Thank you, the tops of the poof were shredded from years of rough play…my boys preferred to toss, roll or use them as shields rather than sit on them. I had to come up with something so when West Elm had a sale on pillow cases $12.99 each I got out the shears, glue and eventually thread and needle. I am sure your boys will eventually resort to their honed skills from home ec as needed sooner or later in life.

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  2. I think you did a great job and using glue is a fine way to go. You accomplished the task, and that’s the most important thing. I sewed quite a bit when I was younger and haven’t in such a long time. I am not at all sure my skills would satisfy me at this point. My grandmother taught me to knit as a child and I have recently thought I’d like to pick up my knitting needles again! I don’t actually have a lot of interest in the projects, but I don’t want the skill to disappear. My oldest granddaughter is showing some interest, and I think that may motivate me. I really enjoyed hearing more about your family and their experiences in Greece. It will be interesting to see if someone “down the line” really shows an interest and talent in sewing and tailoring. It might happen. 🙂


    • Thank you. My sons have both been knitting in school and they are the ones who initiated the request to sign them up for the afternoon activity. The school advocated that knitting assisted with the right brain/left brain connection however, I have also read studies that debunk that theory. As a child while your brain develops it lateralizes functions however, a both sides of your brain work together at all times. I was happy that they enjoyed it and could create cute little items, currently they are not being offered any knitting or sewing and I unfortunately can’t supplement it, however we do garden a lot both in school and around our nest. Have fun rekindling your knitting with your granddaughter, maybe you can help her make holiday gifts!


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