Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Good, The Bad, And The Sniffly

Look what I sewed! This was a test project. I want to make more of these but thought I'd better first test the pattern to make sure I understood it. AND ... I wanted to test my ... wait for it ... my ... my ... my ...


Here's the little beauty! It's the Pfaff Tipmatic 1151! Isn't she gorgeous?!

Here's what happened. If you've been reading my recent travails, you will know that I finally got to the end of my rope with my crumby sewing machine! Done. No more trying to sew on that thing. I put all that hand work into that baby quilt ... the one with the farm critters on it and the green minky back ... only to have tension problems with my sewing machine ... which led to screwy binding ... which led to a warped quilt. It won't hang flat. It curls in. It's still okay but it would have been better if it had hung flat. So I was mad at my machine. Again. And I said so.

So ....

Reading my plight, Angel Gayle came to my immediate rescue. She dug her old machine out of her closet ... deciding that iron-on hemming tape is more her style anyway ... and she dropped her machine off at my door. Friday night I set it up. I was excited right away because already I could tell that the feed dogs would be less problematic than mine. I studied the manual and got everything ready to go. I got it threaded and then went to pop in the bobbin, but natch! My bobbins are too small and I didn't have any others. I dug through the box the sewing machine came in and no bobbins there either and, as chance would have it, I was feeling really crappy so I wasn't about to go out to any stores any time soon to hunt down a suitable bobbin. Stymied again.

Then ...

I got an email from Angel Jo who, having read my story, wondered why she was still hanging onto her old Pfaff. She bought a fancy schmancy new quilting Pfaff a couple of years ago and, thinking she would use her old machine for taking to classes and retreats (it being more portable), she kept her old one. As it turned out, she didn't use her old one after all and she decided to offer it for sale to me! I only really know this old Singer of mine so I have no real knowledge of what a machine should sew like, I just know mine isn't doing what it should. So on Sunday Kevin and I stopped in at Bob and Jo's and I came home with a beautiful new-to-me machine! I LOVE IT! It purrs! I mean it. It really does! And it sews a straight seam! If the seam is crooked at all, it's my fault on this machine. I'm tickled as can be.

On Sunday we watched the grey cup game with friends, all the while bugging Matt (Hannah's boyfriend and die-hard Lions fan who was in the stands at the game) with many texts from Kev cheering for Winnipeg. No time for sewing on Sunday.

But Monday night after work, with Mom here to lend her experience and support, we made this little lined drawstring bag. They've been popping up all over the internet ever since Jeni posted what has become a very popular tutorial. You can find the tutorial here and you can see many sweet examples at her Flickr site. I see, too, that  Jeni has since announced a pattern for these bags for sale in multiple sizes, which would be handy. I'd like to make a shoe bag size. This one is just a little too small for adult shoes. The original tutorial is still on her site, though.

The Pfaff sews like a dream! Mom and I did struggle quilte a while with one little part of the threading system and struggled again with bobbin winding and there's a funny thing that happens with some threads that appear out of nowhere but that don't interfere with the sewing and I'll need to figure that out, but mostly everything went very smoothly. I'll bet I can whip these up really fast now that I understand the way they're made. I gave this bag to Mom.

And now for a little icing on the cake. Angel Pat went to quilt Mecca ... the International Quilt Festival in Houston, Texax ... and brought me back this ever so sweet little pincushion. It's filled with either sand or ground shells (I hear that's what a lot of pincushions are stuffed with - available at pet supply stores) and is cute as can be and heavy! Check out some of the winning quilts from the quilt festival here.

Well, all of that makes the "sniffly" part of the story pretty "meh". I'll only mention it in passing. Within two days of returning from Uruguay, Kevin came down with a nasty cold. I did all I could to protect myself ... he slept on the couch, we did a lot of hand washing ... I used disinfectant wipes on doorknobs, remotes, handles, phones ... but no luck. I caught the damn thing, too! It's a nasty one. We both feel pretty crappy still. Kevin went to the doctor today because he's prone to these things going into his chest but the doctor said his lungs are fine so far and that it's a viral thing. Hunker down ... lots of fluids ... sleep ... some kick ass cough syrup. So that's what we'll do. Actually being "normal sick" is almost refreshing. So much less worrisome than niggling little aches and pains and discomforts I can't explain. It's also more tolerable knowing I have a sweet new sewing machine right here on my dining room table beckoning me!

See? A happy story!

And while I'm at it, way to go, Shelley! The worst is over. And Barb ... be strong!

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  1. Glad to see you've got a new machine! Pfaff is another good name too. I have a friend that only buys that brand. Looks like your having fun getting to know it.

  2. Congratulations on your new machine, and what sweet angel friends you have! Love your bag - I need to go back and check that again on Jeni's blog....hope you feel better soon!

  3. this machine looks great, i want one for my childrens



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