Variety is the Spice of Life

Variety is the spice of life…. or do I mean ‘space of life’?  Let me explain.

Sometimes life is a long endless round of humdrum events – especially work.  However, every now and then someone comes along with a new idea or a wish list for a wedding dress or a costume that’s interesting and thus exciting.

I don’t know what it takes to get other seamstresses excited, but for me it could be sequins, glitter, fancy fabrics, a bold idea or just the client’s brief.  A recent brief was  “Dandy Vikings” – that  got the juices flowing!  Having the opportunity (or excuse) to play with new materials like rubber or leather or old-fashioned hardware can lift another job out of the ordinary and into the ‘rather interesting’ category.

A phone call can turn a day on its head; a copy of the ‘Elsa’ dress? – no problem.  A flamenco wedding dress?  – hmmm….  A Dr Who Prom dress? – I’ll have ago.  A wedding dress for a belly chum?  No problem and lots of fun choosing fabric and finding a design.

Sometimes one’s interest is sparked not just because these commissions are fun or funky, but because they are a challenge or because there is an importance to it.  In my time I’ve done bridesmaid dress for a severely disabled little girl in a wheelchair, a prom dress for a lass in the middle of surgery and it had to work with/without a wheelchair or crutches.  I’ve also conspired with a girl’s Mum to take the fear and shame away from a curvature of the spine by presenting a lassie with a prom dress design with a sheer lace back.  And I can’t begin to tell you how many wedding dresses I have altered to make ‘little orphan Annie’ into a happy and confident bride.

You never know where the next interesting item will come from – they pop up when you least expect it and from the most unlikely sources. The most recent request to cross the desk has come from the husband.  Hold the phone!  Could I make ties and scarves in space fabric?

As you may know, my husband is a Space Technology Consultant and ‘outer space’ plays a big part in our lives (it explains the ‘space;’ part of my email address rita@williamsonspace.co.uk).  I have, in the distant past, made him daft spacey ties and waistcoats for giving talks to schools and WIs.  Now, he and a co-worker are looking at more ‘corporate’ items for use at trade shows and symposia.  Cue google searches of ‘space fabric’ and a riffle through the ‘odds and sods’ box of patterns to find the tie and cravat (yes really) pattern from an 80’s wedding.  I foresee many a happy hour finding just the right fabric for this job.  Personally I am leaning towards Buck Rogers, but I am guessing that won’t be an easy sell to the old man.

Oh well, back to the humdrum.