The risks of losing a needle.

The risks of losing a needle. Drawing Luke Hockley.

The risks of losing a needle. Drawing Luke Hockley.

Dear Self,

I was just sitting in bed sewing a buttonhole on my handmade shirt when I accidently lost the needle.

My endless jar of honey hates it when I drop a pin or lose a needle.

This is understandable.

If you have ever sat on a pin or inadvertently stuck a needle into your finger, then you know that even though it is very unlikely to be fatal it is a very unpleasant experience.

Losing the needle in the bed is pretty high on the list of unacceptable places to lose a sharp metal object.

Here’s the thing.

Hand sewing a shirt involves taking risks.

Most of those risks are extremely imaginary.

“What if I sew the buttonhole crooked? What if the arms to fit neatly into the sleeve head? What if I choose a colour of thread that doesn't look right? What if my stitching is all wonky and the shirt falls apart?”

Who cares?

The point is to hand sew a shirt. If all those things happen it will be completely awesome. All of that will have been the point. If I wanted a perfect shirt with no risks, then I could have bought one from a shop and kept the receipt.

What I wanted was the opportunity to make something. Something imperfect and human.

It’s funny though. At the moment when I am deciding to sew the button on the shirt I notice myself avoiding taking the risk of getting wrong. Even though I know that anything I do will be perfect. I hold off. Worried that I will muck it up. Then I tell myself “Muck it up!”. I remind myself that any imperfection is going to make this shirt into a more accurate reflection of the flawed but loveable human that I hope to be. And I get sewing.

Losing a pin or a needle raises the stakes for me and the people around me. This thing could hurt, not badly, but enough to make you sit up and pay attention.

It’s risky hand sewing a shirt.

It's a risk I’m willing to take.

I hope the people around me are ok with that.



Ps: I found the needle, and every pin I have dropped so far. My endless jar of honey is safe for another day.

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