Monday, July 26, 2010

Sew it goes...

A new shirt -- Stats: PATTERN - New Look 6407
FABRIC - woven, non-stretch 100% cotton
ALTERATIONS to pattern - lengthened torso, narrowed shoulders (but maybe not enough - sigh)
BUTTONS - vintage (maybe 1940's?) medical uniform buttons - think high-necked Ben Casey type shirts (oooh, just dated myself with that cultural reference!)

There was supposed to be a cute cotton skirt to go with it. Hah! I was attempting a side-wrapped straight skirt from an OOP Stretch & Sew pattern. It was easy to sew, fit well, looked good...until I tried to walk in it, and then it made a silly little 'tent' with each step - not a good look! Ah well, sew it goes...

Meanwhile, take a look at these cute little zippers from Japan - (click makes bigger)

Hopefully there's enough detail for you to make out the cute little zipper pulls on the outer zips (that's scissors and a vintage sewing machine) and how the center zip has lacy edges (not as easy to see, sorry!). Found them while reading another blog - they're from an Etsy seller in Japan. Leave a comment if you're interested in knowing who/where and I may be kind enough to look it up for you. I don't have a clue what I'll use them for, but I couldn't resist!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Look Ma -- Crochet!

See, I do still work with yarn -- and very lovely yarn it is too!

Stats: Color Changing Cotton 4-ply from Wolle. Colorway: Sunburst 2 Amount: 2 50 g. balls Pattern: a scarf from Ondori Crochet Lace, a Japanese crochet pattern book. Hook used: 4 mm - F

Of course you know there has been some sewing done -- but that's a post for another day.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Up and Running! (Or, does she even work with yarn anymore?)

It is most definitely not pretty, but it's done!

Here's a closeup of the urethane belting I'm using instead of the traditional leather treadle belt --

Now the question becomes -- do I let Mr. Minglingyarn attempt a cutout of this top (so the machine will sit more conveniently flush with the table), or do we leave well enough alone? Understand, our woodworking skills are nil -- still,it would be more convenient. Of course,if I follow through on my attempt to get a serger up and treadling I would need (yet another) solid top for that. Decisions, decisions! At any rate, kudos to Mr. Minglingyarn -- it really must be love for someone with 10 thumbs to even attempt this -- love you babe!

You would think that perhaps I was done with sewing machine clean ups/fix ups, but no. There's a little matter of a Singer 500a (nicknamed The Rocketeer by collectors) that needs a bit of attention. That tricky enabler Margaret was responsible for this one -- she really wants to make sure I can never tease her again about her herd of spinning wheels!

It doesn't appear to be in very bad shape -- although Margaret mentioned that the previous owner had said that there may be a part missing. It will probably be a display piece -- at least for a little while longer. Too many actual sewing projects lined up at this point!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Lean, green sewing machine


Stats: Singer 185K, straight stitch only machine, three-quarter sized, formerly electrical - now with motor removed and operated by a (repro.) hand crank. Machine is circa 1958, and is mounted in its own wee table. This one is also from Kilbowie, Scotland, so I guess I have the makings of a clan.

As any long-time visitors will doubtless already know, I seem to have a bit of a problem when it comes to vintage sewing machines -- as in, I just can't seem to resist them! But really, take a look at her all cleaned up and tell me she isn't a cutie --

Took a bit of elbow grease to get her looking decent (inside and out) but she's well on her way. While I love the idea of hand cranking her, I'm not too keen on the (not so cute) look of the black crank with Chinese lettering, but there you go -- you do what you need to do. The original green hand wheel was swapped out for a spoked hand wheel from one of my other machines. There are instructions on line for drilling out a space for the hand crank 'finger' so that the original hand wheel can be used, but sadly my tool skills are not up to that (at least right now).

She was quite stiff and sluggish when I first got her home, but cleaning made a big difference. I removed a huge wad of felted lint from around the bobbin case, and now stitch quality is quite nice. Also while cleaning I discovered an old red label that stated "repossessed machine" -- how sad is that? I always like to learn a little of the machine's history, but the person I bought her from wasn't her original owner. In fact, although she sews, she bought this machine several years ago in order to use the cabinet as a table -- never even threaded her up. Ah well, different strokes...

Now, what shall her first project (with me) be?