Sunday, July 13, 2008

Weekend Project: The Loosening of Apron Strings

Never help a child with a task at which he feels he can succeed.

Maria Montessori

Now we're really cooking! (And not just from the lack of air conditioning...) Their sewing machines, (Kenmore, non-computerized), arrived on Wednesday, and today was our first day sewing with them. There are so many reasons to be happy about this that I don't even know where to start!

Of course, I don't mind not having to lug my machine to Ana's house every week. ;)

Even more than that, the fact that they don't have to share - no more waiting around for one to finish a seam before the other can sew, no more changing the thread 50 times in 2 hours - it was wonderful!

The best thing of all - they are no longer dependent on me, nor restricted to sewing for 2 hours once a week... :)

In fact, we did the facings together today - and I was happy to be there for that, as I don't think that facings are completely intuitive the first time you do them - but I encouraged them to try to finish the dresses on their own this week! The remaining steps are mainly to add the skirt to the top part of the dress, along with 4 belt loops, and then hem it.

We read through the instructions together, looked at the illustrations, "talked" about the remaining steps - they expressed hesitation and doubt, but I think they will be able to do it. And this is so important - I think it is time for them to ease away from relying on me and begin to sew independently.

I still plan to do 2 or 3 more projects with them - t-shirts for their boyfriends (and experience with knits), blouses for themselves (collars, buttons & buttonholes) and maybe an unfitted pair of pants (like pajamas). (As you may know, fitting pants is not something I know how to do. Yet.)

But I'm planning to let them do more and more on their own for each project, so that by the time we are done with these plans, they will be ready to "cut the apron strings" completely. :)

Hopefully, next week I'll have pictures of their dresses to show you! Please take a moment to send some good sewing vibes their way this week... Thanks!


Claire said...

You ROCK!!! When I think about all you've accomplished with this project I'm beyond amazed.
1. Teaching and leaning enough of a foreign language to be understood.
2. Teaching sewing and increasing self-confidence.
3. Giving a helping hand up and not becomming a crutch.
4. Extending the hand of friendship and caring.

The list could go on and on.....

Claire said...

PS. If I could type without typos I too will have accomplished something. LOL!!!