Tuesday, August 22, 2006

The Uncommon Threads Adventure a.k.a. Getting Stitched in t.v. land

We’re back from our Uncommon Threads taping – none the worse for wear – although physically exhausted and mentally spent. As we were winging our way west, Clara and I kept pinching each other to see if it was real. We were utterly amazed that our childhood lessons of sewing and embroidery were getting us on the little screen. The anticipation of things to come kept us on our toes.

All our preparation of stitching just wasn’t enough. Since they had asked me to be on the show and since Uncommon Threads had started shooting, the DIY network had changed the way they wanted the show shot. What I was prepared for, wasn't what they now wanted. The first season of “Uncommon Threads” has just begun airing and evidently, probably to everyone’s amazement, they do seriously take viewers' comments to heart. What this meant is that there was no skipping of steps. Since we didn’t have enough step-outs pre-made to show all the steps of a particular project, a bunch of my projects got cancelled. I guess I understand but I was a little miffed after the hours I spent making everything.

The good thing about the people at Screen Door – the production company – was that they were all super nice and made us feel completely comfortable. We had our own producer named Judy Helm who walked us through our instructions a zillion times. We had a prop person – a lovely girl named Andry – who handed us things from the sidelines as we needed them. Judy had a friendly assistant producer named Molly Fitzgerald who gave us confidence and is one of the nicest women on the planet. The hostess Allison Whitlock, was so nice and friendly and she actually is very crafty herself. She knew how to embroider. She could anticipate what to say and point out about what we were demonstrating and she made us feel totally comfortable – as comfortable as you can be with fifteen people watching, directing, lighting, filming and more. I never did find out what they all did.

It took us two days to figure out we had a dressing room – which was pretty humorous. We kept changing in the bathroom. While we were there, two other groups were also filming – a crochet group from Atlanta and a weaving group from Colorado. They were really nice too – just as nervous and apprehensive – but they were troopers and they looked great on the monitors.

What was so amazing was how many people it took to make the whole thing come together and how long we had to film for a 22 minute show. We were filming for two and a half hours and it will all be edited and condensed. I will be interested to see what they used from the bits we filmed.

That’s it from here. If you want to read more about the “Uncommon Threads” filming experience, I recommend reading the blogs of Dharia and Sarah. They’ve done a good job of capturing their moments which were very similar to Clara's and mine. I forgot my camera so I can’t post any photos. The shows will air sometime in 2007 and I’ll try to find out when and post here.

My thought of the day for you all is... teach your kids to stitch, crochet, knit, paint, draw, and be generally crafty. You never know where it will lead them.

I’m going to take the next two weeks off to spend time with Julia and Mark, my mom and my sisters. I’ll be back in early September. Enjoy the rest of the summer!


Dharia said...

hey there! glad you made it back safe and not too frazzled.
i'm so sorry to hear they cut your projects!! i really wish they had told us all about the new step outs before we went out there. but now we know how hurried and capricious the industry is. eye opening!

Sarah Brueck Stallings said...

Kristin - your sewing is gorgeous and love your designs!
I hope doing Uncommon Threads will be beneficial for you!
I really hope they contact all the remaining UT guests and explain the new "rules" so as not to disappoint too many more people!
Best wishes!

Alicia P. said...

So glad you did this, Kristin! Can't wait to see it. xo

kneek said...

How many shows did you tape in the end? It sounds like they need a little help in the communication department, despite being very nice and friendly.

Anonymous said...

Here's a link to some knitted and embroidered mittens that I think you'll appreciate - they're designed and knitted by a Finnish knitter who blogs up in Lapland. http://lenealve.blogspot.com/


vintagechica said...

Even though I have 3 boys, I love that they appreciate hand-made things. We "craft" alot and the oldest two have just started to embroider. And you are right, you never know where it can lead them. Im sure their future wives will love the fact that they can sew a button on!