We’ve mentioned craft camp a few times around here lately, and thought we’d share some snaps from our last one. Last year we were lucky enough to go on a couple of crafty retreats at Sewjourn, and I think we’d both agree those weekends were real highlights of the year.
For some reason my non-sewing friends are endlessly fascinated by the whole concept of a group of craft-loving ladies going away for a weekend to do nothing but sew. I’ve had quite a few conversations that go something like this:
‘So you go away for three days and do nothing but sew…?’
‘And everyone there does nothing but sew?
‘Do you go out and have any fun while you’re there?
– No. THE SEWING IS THE FUN.
‘Do you drink?’
– Yep. But not enough to mess with the sewing.
‘After three days do you feel like you never want to see a sewing machine again?’
– The EXACT opposite.
I know it sounds a bit nutty to the uninitiated, but surely some of you sewing types can relate? We both feel that it’s such a lucky break and a joy to have three days away in the countryside with like-minded friends and acquaintances who share the whole hand-making passion thing deep in their bones. And yeah, I guess it is pretty weird that some of us are at their machines before 6am and some are still there past midnight, and some don’t stop much in between, but the chance to make stuff without interruption, to share skills and tricks, to borrow and compare patterns, to celebrate successes and laugh in the face of failures, is so much FUN.
So this recent camp was about Fen dress fever; summer dresses and more summer dresses; meticulously crafted linen tunics that prove the value of all those pesky things like basting, pinning and hand stitching; pom pom trimmings; Christmas gifts and selfless sewing; experiments with overalls; Inari tees; simple singlets and one quiet crafter who sat in the corner making felt leaves and flowers and ended up with this sweetest of animations for her new book:
Sewing, crafting and hand-making can be quite a solitary business (thank goodness for Instagram!). While often that’s part of the appeal, there’s also something lovely about sharing a hobby for a while, being in time and space with others immersed in that creative process, and taking a break from the normal mad juggle of fitting your hobby around your life. We’re thinking of ways this year to inject some craft camp energy into our Melbourne weekends – to gather with friends occassionally for a couple of hours of making and laughing. We’ll keep you posted. x