Two Raleigh sisters walked away from the N.C. State Fair in October with a handful of ribbons that recognized the Ravenscroft School students’ sewing, knitting and jewelry-making skills.
Keira Segars, 7, and her sister Heidi Segars, 10, have both been sewing since they were about 4, said their grandmother Lyn Raba.
Raba, who sews and does other handwork (including making a lot of the girls’ dress-up clothes), said choosing projects, sewing the items and entering them in the fair is an annual ritual for her and her granddaughters.
A ritual, she said, that is embedded with lessons and character-building opportunities for the girls.
“We work all summer, and sometimes during the year,” Raba said.
They explore various ideas and try to choose competitive projects, which often require learning new skills mixed with exercising patience and being careful.
Entering the fair, Raba, creates an added incentive.
“It needs to be as perfectly done as you can achieve, so that is hard,” she said.
After entering the fair for about three years, the girls have also learned not to take losses personally.
“We have a lot of discussions about how you don’t always win the first place,” Raba said.
Both of the girls, however, did place first in their age groups at the fair this year, according to their grandmother. Keira was recognized for her hand-sewn necklace and an embroidered purse.
Heidi placed first in the machine-sewn doll dress category for her age group and placed third for a machine-sewn purse and a knitted hat.