It had taken me 18 months to find it, but when I entered the cavernous expanse I knew my quest was over. From wall to ceiling the room glittered with treasure, and there was a strangely familiar musty smell. I darted about, stroking different items, picking up little items the caught my eye before carefully replacing them. It was oddly magical.
I really didn't know where to look next, my eyes tried to drink in all the buttons, fabrics and threads as my mind raced through all the creative possibilities. Purple spiderweb fabric for Halloween, rolls of fleece begging to be made into ponchos, tapastries, jumpers, hats, cardigans to be crafted from the mountains of wool and thread... I wanted to try my hand at it all!
Except I can't. I don't know where to start.
My mum is the needleworker in my family, she'll put darts in dresses, take up trousers and re-line curtains without a second thought. I can just about stitch on a button and sew over the holes in my leggings...
I don't remember her actually doing it, but I remember certain jumpers I had as a child and knowing my mum had made them. But my Mum never taught me to knit. She says that as a child I showed no interest (I was a stubborn little thing), but yesterday my mind was itching with the creative possibilities, but it's not just my lack of skill just let's me down. I'm worried about making something, or starting to, and giving up before I'm finished. My self confidence (or lack of it) tells me I'll fail before I even start.
My Mum has always been a perfectionist. She'd never admit it, but at the same time she'd stay up all night crafting the perfect curtain-tops. She puts herself under so much pressure to achieve perfection that it no longer looks fun. Maybe that's why I never showed any interest as a youngster. I worried that just having a go wouldn't be good enough... And besides, there was always my Mum to do things for me...
But as an adult things need to change. Hubby and I decided yesterday that we won't be returning to the West Country to start a family. I won't have my Mum on hand to offer to take in school trousers, I need to know that I can do it myself.
So I'm setting myself a challenge. Before the end of the year I'm going to make myself a hooded poncho. It's not hard from what I gather, but it will be a big step for me.
All I need to do now is buy the fabric, and know that trying is the first step.