Friday, June 2, 2017

Sewing Lethargy

While Mike was in the hospital in August and things were not looking good, I came home one night and threw all my quilting things off the table and into a plastic bin.  Since that time, I've only gone into the sewing room to make necessary repairs and do two projects:  This lap quilt for a friend and an advent calendar for the children.

The room became a catchall for things I didn't have a home for and has become pretty scary, but I just could not seem to get any enthusiasm for sewing.

I'm determined to change that now and get busy.  Without even bothering to clean the room, I've done 3 projects just this week.

Getting back into machine embroidery was the first thing.  I bought a few shirts from ARB Blanks and did this one for Graysen.  Why I picked a design with over 30,000 stitches to get myself back into embroidery is a mystery to me except that Emily, Graysen, and I all agreed on it.

Graysen loved it and helped me pick out the colors.  It was really a lot of fun to do except for the plastic film I used.  I like to place a layer of plastic film over the shirt while I'm sewing it to give a better look.  Reading the directions on the box of Sol-U-Film Washable, I saw that I could soak for 30 second to 2 minutes and it wold dissolve.  It didn't.  I soaked all night, and it still sat there thick and shiny, which would NOT do.  I finally came to the conclusion that I had accidentally placed heat soluble film into the water soluble box, and when I pressed across it with a hot iron, it started to dissolve.  It was still a lot of trouble though, and I was really pleased to see that it turned out okay.

So did Graysen love it and wear it immediately?  No, of course not.  She admired it and talked about it, but when it came time to put it on, she flatly refused.  Why!  Only she knows.  Our conversation before school.  Me:  So you don't like the shirt.  You chose the design:  G:  I love it.  I love mermaids.  M:  Why don't you want to wear it or just try it on?  G.  I don't know.  -Looking sad-  I only like pink things.  M:  The starfish and the fish are pink, and I did a pink flower in the mermaid's hair.  G:  I just don't want to wear it.  M.  Well, we're in a hurry so pick out a shirt you like (for school), and we'll go on.  And did she pick out a pink shirt?  Again, of course not.  She chose an old hand-me-down faded green shirt that has a sequined shamrock on it - way too short.  M:  I thought you only loved pink shirts.  G:  Well, I love this shirt.  Maybe Katherine will like the mermaid one when she's 4.

I've decided to take a day each week and do nothing but sew, knit, or crochet - or clean the sewing room and get rid of things.

Today I did an outdoor umbrella!  Ryan had found this umbrella for a good price and bought it used, but it had a lot of repair to be done.  The pockets to hold the frame (spokes?) were all torn and frayed, and the Velcro that held it shut had rotted with time and weather.

It look daunting when I first saw it, but I found some thread and a strong needle and proceeded.

It was actually quit easy when I saw what the pockets were supposed to look like.  All 8 of them were in some state of disrepair, unstitched on various sides and raveling.

They were all intact though, so it was a simple matter to sew around 3 sides, tucking under the raw edges.  It worked out pretty well, I think.

Next was a row of Velcro to fasten the edges of the umbrella together when it was up.  It was old and weathered and just ripped off when I tugged on it.

I found a long strip of white Velcro and sewed one side down without problem.  The other side was cut into piceces for some reason, so I sewed 3 pieces down the length.  The big problem was that the Velcro has a sticky back and started to gum up my needle.  I was too lazy to clean it since I was so close to finishing, so I had to keep rethreading.  It did work out finally, and I think it's going to work.

Not my best job of sewing but adequate for what it is.  Now all we need is a little sunshine.

The third and last project of the day was Ballerina Bear's arms.  I can't remember how many times I have reattached those arms.  Graysen tends to swing her around and around by her arms, and the purple fabric for the outfit just frays more each time.

She was too chubby to get under the needle of my machine, so armed with thread and needle and a good audio book on the computer, I did battle with those arms.  I tucked them farther into the batting, turned under the purple satin, and stitched many many stitches.  They won't come out easily, but I don't promise they won't ever come out again.

I enjoyed breaking my bout of lethargy and getting back in the sewing room, but I'm looking for some things next week that are a little more fun.  

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