I was taught to use a sewing machine by my grandmother when I was 13, but didn’t use my skills regularly until college, when I spent four years working in the costume shop as a stitcher. We didn’t always make costumes by hand, but there were always alterations to be done and I learned how to cut patterns, pin fabric and put together the pieces. After finishing school, I went without an electric machine for almost six years. I finally got around to buying my own machine last winter and it was one of the best purchases I ever made. It makes sewing the backdrops (and everything else, like costumes and puppet bodies) SO much faster! Now if I could just get a little better at filling bobbins….life would be perfect.