Create Your Future

Feb 25, 2012


Mariah Pattie - Springfield High School
Credit Randy Eccles / WUIS/Illinois Issues

I have never played video games, never gone out for a sport.  I watch no regular TV shows, almost never do my homework at home, and have joined few high school clubs.  Yet my days are not filled with unending boredom.  In fact, I do not have time for sports and TV.  What fills my days?  I sew.  It is actually something of an obsession.  I started sewing classes nine years ago, and by the end of eighth grade I could finish practically any pattern.  I sketch during school hours, eager to get home and start my next project.  My sewing machine broke a couple months ago, leaving me on the verge of a meltdown when I realized that I was now incapable of creating anything until it was fixed.  My specialty is costumes, both historical and movie replicas.

My life is about creating. Mankind is nothing without creativity, individually or as a society.

There is something magical about putting on a costume.  When I lace up my gold Regency corset over a floor length skirt my mind is electrified by thoughts of the elegance and poise of those timeless eras.  Or I can don the creamy layers and flowing brown robes of a Jedi, with the steady assurance that my costume is nearly as accurate as the movie itself.  What about the chill I get when I look at my Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland dress and think of all the painstaking hours I spent searching the Internet for pictures and recording even the least perceptible of details?  The best part is the knowledge that I created those costumes from scratch.  Me.  Money could never buy the effort put into them.   I wore the gold corset dress for my senior pictures, with no regrets, because my creations are part of me.  I could not exist without them any more than they could have existed without me.  When I finally complete something, be it corset, dress, or even curtains, I get a thrill just looking at it and realizing that I dreamed it up, I sketched it out, I created the pattern, and I brought it to life with the skill of my own hands.

Don’t get me wrong; my life is not about sewing.  My life is about creating.  Mankind is nothing without creativity—individually or as a society.  When an artist dreams up a painting or an author a plot, they have the opportunity to create something lasting, something that will outlive themselves.  They have the opportunity to beautify the world.  When I was younger, I was embarrassed because my peers thought sewing was “old-fashioned,” “girly-girl,” or just plain “weird.”  But now that I have realized the power it gives me to bring imagination to life, I would not trade my skills for anyone else’s.  I believe in the power of creativity to shape our future.