Friday, October 21, 2011

Decaf does not agree with me.

That was the sound of a costume zombie rising from the muddy grave.

I'm finally back in the sewing room & delighting in the company of my machine, iron, needles & thread. Of course, just now I'm at the computer on my lunch break pondering the multifaceted world of Historic Sewing... and all the good & bad that comes with that.

Like: how mean should someone be when "kindly" explaining to someone else that ALL buttonholes were ALWAYS sewn using the TRUE buttonhole stitch (wrap thread twice) vs the blanket stitch (wrap thread once)? With a "so-called expert" thrown in to twist the knife.
And then how should one respond when one was sewing on heavy wool with heavy thread & a "true" buttonhole stitch was impractically bulky? Hrm... ponder, ponder... yet I admit that the ancient post was indeed misleading and I have since learned that a "true" buttonhole stitch is basically a French Knot, pearl stitch, or countless other "wrap it twice" techniques. For the 18th c... Sigh.
I hate forum flotsam.

And: Is it NOT OK to learn? Is one not allowed to make mistakes? Really? I mean, we all start somewhere, right? So if you are starting out on a path of research or growth in your hobby/field of study, are you not permitted to say some stupid things on occasion?
Why should someone be condemned for saying something today in contradiction to something they said 2 years ago? Do findings not change?
Are we not permitted to change our minds?

I just get so tired of the Mavens squishing the newbees (or the not-so-newbees), especially with "always" and "never" statements. Please prove it. PLEASE direct me to your primary sources. I would love to read them! I really do mean that.

Anyway... please, if you are a long-time living historian, of whatever flavor... be kind to the new kids on the block. Gently guide them, hand them books vs. dragging them around by the back of the neck or hurling expletives at their heads.

Then: there's the issue of sewing vendors/sellers using copyrighted patterns for the bulk of their inventory when they know it's wrong.
Let us just say that most pattern makers are really great people & deserve your respect both financially & intellectually. Just because "no one can tell" once the final piece is made, doesn't make it right. ASK them. Chances are they will give you permission to use their patterns.

Failing that, learn to draft patterns like I do... or learn to drape! (I'm quickly discovering the wonderful world of draping). Work from originals with permission & if you "can do it that way" please DO.
"Don't steal" is one of those things that is a basic moral. Obtain it, observe it & abide by it.


Gail Kellogg Hope said...

Yes, I'm grumpy.

I'll post pretty clothing pictures soon, I promise.

Keith said...

Yes gail, the whole thing can get as murky as the water you are paddling in. The answere is research research and more research. But you are right, we need to guide and help, not put people down. This is supposed to be fun!
Regards, Keith.