In my part of the world we say you are a fool if your passion for a pursuit overcomes all practical sense. I am a stitching fool, and I stitch foolishness.

Friday, March 2, 2012

words, words, words

I came home today to find a catalog which I enjoy in my mailbox.  It has fabrics and laces and very pretty things.

And, as I glanced through it, I noticed that it is dedicated to providing heirloom sewing supplies to sewists.


I guess it's better than the word I have most recently seen for people who like to sew.


Somehow that doesn't bring up images of lovely work wrought with needle and thread.  It brings up images of dark, smelly, unpleasant places.  With rats.

What happened to seamstresses?

OK, OK, I know.  Charter subscriber to Ms Magazine here. Language needed to reflect a non-gender-based society, etc, etc, etc.

However, in my naivete, I also thought that, in addition to equal pay and equal opportunity, we would also respect those endeavors that had been previously pretty much restricted to one sex or the other.  This included child care providers and  . . .well . . .seamstresses.

Baby Girl, who majored in Linguistics,  periodically chides me (another word that seems to be vanishing--chides--sounds so much better than criticizes--much gentler--anyway . . .) and reminds me that language is ever evolving and ever changing. We don't speak Chaucerian English or Shakespearean English or even Dickensian English.  The rules of grammar and spelling drummed into me by Mrs. Luther, Mrs. Finlay, Miss Jones, Mrs. Lide, and Mrs. Garner all through elementary school are changing. I do cringe when I hear someone say "between you and I" but I deal with it.


on those rare occasions when I do practical sewing and it works the way I envisioned it, I want to be called a seamstress, not a sewist.

Or a sewer.

(And on the impractical embroidery side, I am beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel called Obligation Stitching.  By this time next week, I should be embroidering my non-obligation stuff!)

1 comment:

  1. I'm with you - "Sewist"? - what a truly ghastly word!