that's me - Stephanie Boman!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

that old sew and sew

How do I love this vintage ad? Let me count the ways. I love the wife's pin curls and her apron, I love the little girl's romper and how she's clutching her baby doll, I love the traditional lunch box, and how dapper dad is. Most of all, I like how simple the message is: buy a car and give someone work. How refreshingly straight forward.

And in the vein of aprons and simplicity, here's a vintage pattern I bought off etsy. Yes, I am teaching myself how to sew.

My mother used to sew for me when I was young - she used an old singer treadle machine. She made me my sixth grade graduation dance dress - a jumper with small polka dots and a lacy white shirt - that I wore excitedly, only to be crushed when no one asked me to dance. But no one was asking others to dance. We were in sixth grade, for cryin' out loud - why were we even having dances? But I digress.

I picked up a little sewing - I knew how to thread a machine and make a hem - but I never did much with it.

For some reason I recently had a desire to start sewing. Maybe it was looking at vintage dresses and wishing for that style of clothes for myself. So I bought a child's sundress pattern and made something wearable with it. I'm learning lots: like what bias tape is for, and that the pattern piece for half of the front is meant to be used with fabric doubled over to make a whole, that machines nowadays can do hundreds of stitches with a touch of a button, and can even thread themselves.

I guess what this is all about is learning something new. I'm nigh on forty and only recently realizing my potential. I figure if I can plan and take a trip to England with my daughter on my own, write a publishable book, start a small business, and most surprisingly, start running, then there is no limit to what I can do. Why not make my own clothes?

How about you? Have any of you stepped out of your comfort zone lately? Tried something new?

Friday, March 18, 2011

Jane says

"Seldom, very seldom, does complete truth belong to any human disclosure; seldom can it happen that something is not a little disguised or a little mistaken."

The quote from Emma is too true. How often do we lay our souls completely bare? Even in writing, I've known myself to hold back what would be true to a situation or a character. In blogging, even more so. It is too easy to portray yourself the way you want to be perceived. And for that reason I am resolving to show all of who I am.

This is why I like Jane Austen's writing so much - it is honest; brutally and hilariously honest. She calls everything as she sees it, and writes about it in such a superb satirical style.

I'll leave you with another pearl of wisdom from Jane:

"What wild imaginations one forms where dear self is concerned! How sure to be mistaken!"

Here's to honesty, clarity, and a disposal of rose-tinted glasses. Have a great weekend, all!

Monday, March 14, 2011

identity crisis

I continually struggle with who I am. Not in a mental way (thank heavens!), but in a how-I-portray-myself-to-the-world-way.

I recently dipped into twitterland again and I noticed that many of the people I follow have something in common. Their little bios invariably start with "I am a writer . . . ".

When I start an introduction with that phrase I frequently stop and think, "but that's not the only way I identify myself!" When I think of "me" I don't automatically think of writer. Writing is something I do, not who I am.

Is that wrong? Does that mean I'm less of a writer for not automatically identifying myself that way? Am I not as committed to being an authoress?

I know that I am in this publishing thing for the long haul, and that I have more writing in me beyond this book. So I don't think it's a question of commitment to the art of the written word.

I have many "titles" that I wear proudly: mom, artist, wife, writer, business owner. I have different blogs and websites for several of those roles. Why can't I merge them as one, figuratively and literally?

I think part of the reason is that the audiences to my various endeavors are not all the same, and what one group is interested in, another won't be. Not everyone has as many schizophrenic interests as I do. Perhaps if I was charismatic enough I could make all sides of me interesting to everyone. But until that happens . . .

How about you? I think the followers of this blog are without exception all "writers". I'd like to hear about how you identify yourself in everyday life. If "writer" comes to mind first I'd like to hear about that, too. Did it happen gradually? Is it automatic? Do you consistently introduce yourself that way?