At the end of the year in 1999, for no reason at all, I decided to sew myself a replica 1901 Reception Gown, of spotted net and satin.
‘No Reason' I've learned, is an extremely high-value reason to do anything.
I had just returned to Melbourne from 6 years in Japan, and had the time, the freedom.
I had no idea how to make it. I did, however, know that Step One was printing out the pattern, which I did.
Step Two was putting it in my handbag, taking it out to puzzle over and decipher, wherever I went.
One day I was standing in line at the bank. Because iPhones hand’t yet been invtented, I took out the pattern to gaze at it.
There was a tap on the shoulder, and the older lady behind me asked “Are you going to make that?"
“Yes! Im going to try. I don’t yet know how though" was my reply.
It turns out she was a member of the Adelaide Historical Costume Society, and a sewing teacher. She had come to Melbourne for her husband’s work, and her days were quite lonely.
Betty was her name. A few days later my sewing machine and I were at her house. Every day for weeks I’d walk through the Melbourne parks, from my house to hers, and before long, with lovely Betty by my side, my dream became real.
The moral of the story is, if you want to do something really, really lovely, theres this crazily high chance there are people out there, criss- crossing your path, who want to be on your team.
Think of something adorable, whimsical, ‘no reason’ that you want to make. Small, like a fancy dinner, or big, like a fancy family.
Put a photo of how it will look in your phone, as your screen saver.
Gaze at it often.
Ask everyone you meet how they think you should start making it happen.
Then tell me how it goes.