Sylvie, volunteer seamstress, to Victor, 5 years old:
"What do you want to sew?
"What is it like, this boat?"
And so Victor begins to draw his boat and then cuts out each part of the drawing: hull, mast, sail, and the little flag at the top of the mast. Victor then chooses fabrics, a colour for each element of the boat, not to mention the background. Sylvie then sets each corresponding piece of paper on the fabric, and Victor cuts out the fabric following the outline of the paper. Sylvie then starts some of the foundation stitches under the watchful eyes of her apprentice, and passes him the needle to continue the work. Victor pierces the first fabric, pulls the needle through, and I brought it back out through the other side.
We finished at home. At the end, he was able to sew all alone, even on the underside of the fabric. We of course confined our sewing to the foundation stitches. The portholes were his idea. He chose the buttons, their number and their placement. I helped him to sew the first three buttons (one of the few things that I know how to sew) and he did the rest without my help. I would never have thought all this could be done by a 5-year-old boy.
Thanks Sylvie! And thanks to the workshop Needles and Creations at the Tourelles! This workshop takes place every Tuesday from 2 pm to 5 pm at the Tourelles, the socio-cultural centre of Pauillac. This workshop is normally intended for adults, but anything is possible when the will is there!
2018 Anne Fontana (Pauillac), translation: Chris Murray