Sew, Sew, Sew Your Boat…

I decided to start sewing for purely practical reasons. It’s a useful skill no matter the application and overall pretty popular around the sailing community. I am honestly surprised at how much I enjoy it. Well, it started with just enjoying the results. Enjoying the process has been a much slower courtship.

I am NOT the creative one in my family. That award goes to my sister, she is super creative, can draw and paint, sing and play guitar, has the more daring fashion sense that she rocks flawlessly, all that. I have always been the bookish one who likes math and neutral colors. We are quite comfortable in our roles. So imagine my surprise (and likely several other peoples too) when I took up sewing – well after the shock and head shaking of “I live on a boat” wore off, when I started released my inner Martha Stewart. Shock aside, over the last year or so, I have done lots of projects on our boat and made a couple of simple sunshades and covers for neighbors and have come to enjoy myself. Captain Harry – who owns several boats in our area hired me to replace the salon cushions in his beautiful 60 ft Morgan schooner. Salon = living room. I don’t know why sailors need their own language. The catch (ketch? heh) was the turnaround time. He needed these completed by the end of January. I didn’t mind – my first big sewing job!

Challenge accepted. Harry opted for a durable marine vinyl, a material I had never worked with and my eyes about came out of my head when the 70lb roll of material showed up. But New Year’s Day I loaded my trusty Singer Tradition into a dock cart and set up shop on the Morgan. Upside of such a large boat was plenty of room to work. And work I did.

During the month of January I got the flu. The first time in at least 15 years that I had the flu happened in the year that I wasn’t allowed to touch anything. Seriously? But at least it wasn’t COVID. That knocked me down for about a week. Then I made an emergency trip to South Dakota for the BEST reason – our family welcomed another grandson and needed a little help because of COVID exposure. Shameless Nana Jana excuse to share a photo…..

31 (minus 11) days, 80 ft of cushions, 70lbs of Marine vinyl, 875 yards of thread, 1 seam ripper, about 2,000 straight pins, a couple of blisters, many bleeding fingertips and 4 months of The Upside podcast and it. is. done.

Harry is happy. I got even more new business from this. I feel amazingly accomplished and proud. I also can’t look directly at my sewing machine just yet – too soon.

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