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2019 Sewing Log


2 January 2019

I pinned the casings in briefs #2 this morning.

Then I cut off a piece of red basting thread and made two bar tacks.  This proved surprisingly difficult.  I'd expect someone who had never seen a needle before to do a bar tack right the first time, with proper coaching.  But I had to take the second tack out twice -- I just couldn't get it level -- and then I had trouble tucking in the ends.

Maybe it's naptime.  (Well, it is *now*; I've been fiddling around with e-mail and the Web.)


4 January 2019

Briefs #2 are in the drawer, not without drama.  I ran out of bobbin thread while sewing the casings, and for a while I couldn't remember where I put the balls of 100/6 cotton.  I must get around to sorting out the stuff in the northeast corner of the sewing room.

Then I started to lay the cord elastic along the line on the yardstick, careful that it was straight but not stretched.  Oops, I should have the scissors in my hand when I'm doing this.  So I got the scissors out of the drawer, very carefully measured thirty-three inches, and discovered that I had the sheath in my hand and the scissors had vanished.

After a bit I decided that it was better to fetch scissors from the other sewing machine than to spend the whole day hunting scissors.  I carefully put them right back after the first cut, then started wearing them around my neck, tucked into my timer pocket.  (That pair is attached to a loop of twill tape that usually serves to re-assure me that the scissors are in the proper drawer of the treadle sewing machine.) And I put them back into the drawer as soon as I'd sewn the last gap closed!

I seem to be down to two #10 crewel needles.  I wonder where I bought them?

I found the scissors on my typing hat, which was on the floor under the ironing board.  Now the sheath has gone missing.


8 January 2019

Pinned the casings in another pair of briefs this morning.  I meant to sew them too, but there was a garage-cleaning frenzy and I had to save some stuff.


10 January 2019

I think I sewed #3 yesterday.  It's sewn, anyway.  I pinned #4 this morning,

pulling pins out of casing as sewing proceeds

and I'm in the process of sewing it.  With right-angle pins, I can sweep each pin aside without stopping the machine to pull it out.

I haven't opened the box of red glass-head pins yet, but I'm close -- I have exactly enough white glass-head pins to pin one pair of briefs.

#5 is pinned and on the machine, but it's nap time.


12 January 2019

I tore the sleeve of my black long-sleeved cotton T-shirt while taking it off yesterday.  It's so worn that I put my finger through the fabric next to the cuff.  I think I'll baseball-stitch the three-cornered tear instead of throwing the shirt away, since I don't know where to buy a long-sleeved T- shirt.  I do have a half-cotton T-shirt, but it's thinner.

Well, that was exciting.  I sewed the waist casing of briefs #5, then just as I was starting to sew the first leg hole, a pin struck one of the two mystery holes in the throat plate and slid on down in.

I took the needle plate and the throat place off, but couldn't see the pin.  So I took the shuttle out, still couldn't see it, but much poking and puffing later it came into view and I got it out.  Then I started having at the greasy dust this process had exposed with a cotton swab and a quarter of a "Box of Rags" brand paper towel.

After a bit I saw the point of another pin poking up at the back wall of the compartment.  It would have been easy to pull it out with tweezers, but without thinking, I poked at it with the cotton swab in my hand and knocked it out of sight.  Eventually I had to take the wires off the machine -- I think that this is the first time I pulled the plug on the machine end of the power cord -- and carry it out to the garage, where the air compressor blasted out the pin and a good bit of dust.

And now the machine is back together and there's a piece of correction tape over the mystery holes.  I think that they are for attaching an attachment; I must dig out the manual.

If only to refresh my memory as to what ought to be oiled.

Dast I sew that leg hole before lying down for a nap?


14 January 2019

A while back I got up in the middle of the night, pulled out the top item in the blanket box, and threw it over the bed.  It was a ratty old synthetic blanket that is still around because it's one third of a mattress pad.  (And I must remember, next sheet-changing day, that it's time to throw one of the two blankets on the bed into the wash and put this one on the bottom of the pile.)

Today was wash day and also time to re-make the bed from the mattress pad up, and I thought it high time to roodle around in the blanket box and find a nice blanket for the top layer.  Oops! Nothing in there but single-bed blankets and a blanket meant for a double bed, but too small to put on a king bed crosswise.

And a piece of wool I bought intending to make a suit.  It is so ugly that I never cut it, but it should make a very nice blanket.

yard goods on bed

Al approves this proposal.

cat sleeping on yard goods

It's kinder hard to be sure measuring it all folded up, but I think I have eleven yards.

I think I need six inches less than three yards.  On the one hand, I don't want it dragging on the floor, on the other hand, I'm not at all sure this wool has been washed.

If it is eleven yards, taking out six to make a blanket will leave five.  Perhaps I should simply cut it in half and make two.

Five and a half -- two and three quarters -- nine inches less than three yards, and I can bind the ends instead of hemming them.

But how much will it shrink? It won't fit into the washing machine, which suggests strongly that it hasn't been washed, but it may date back to when I did my washing at the laundromat in Voorheesville.  Even after I bought the Maytag, I vaguely remember taking yard goods there.


16 January 2019

I've sewn #5 and begun pinning #6.  I don't think I've mentioned that I've been pressing the seams open with my fingers.  This jersey doesn't open itself, but it stays open once firmly informed that it should.  In addition to pinching between my fingers I stretch the seam while pushing up from below.

After pinning #6, I had three pins left over.

But I noticed a few that should be stuck into the bent-pin cushion on my dresser, and I found a plastic-head pin that I presume to be the one blown out of the sewing machine.  It must have been in the works a long time!

The bent-pin cushion is the lid of a small basket.  There always seems to be a shortage of bent pins when I want to take a pin out of circulation for the long term, as when I pinned an old sheet around an unwanted thingummy so that it would be clean when we turn it in with our leased car.

I'm feeling a bit time-for-a-nap, so I'll put away a few things in the garage instead of finishing #6.  Since I started with #7, this is the last brief.


17 January 2019

All briefs now await elastic and inventory marks.  Instead, I'm measuring the wool.  Folded double, it is four yards and twenty-eight inches long -- and that carpenter's folding ruler was really handy; buy your sewing tools at the hardware store whenever possible.

While measuring, I noticed that the ends have been zig-zagged, so it has been washed.

I have inspected my box of silk scraps, my box of synthetic scraps -- must not forget that that box contains a substantial amount of the ripstop I made my yellow windbreaker from -- the closet, and the laundry room, and I've concluded that the nicest binding I can make from what I've already got is the black ripstop left over from my wind pants.  I bought nearly twice as much as I needed, because I hadn't expected the pieces to lay out side-by-side so much.  Black china silk would be even nicer, but though there's a fairly-large piece, it isn't that large.  And what I have is too thin and flimsy.

Went to Dharma's web site, which is where I got the black habotai.  Their only black habotai is 8mm -- and so is their chiffon.  White habotai can be had as thick as 16mm.

This search led me to notice that the shelf in the half of the closet that I can't use for fabric is just lying on its supports.  I think I'll get a screwdriver, take out the lower hanger rod, and move some of the too-long-for-the-closet fabrics out of the laundry room.

And I can probably throw out some of the shirts now hanging on the upper rod.

Ooooo . . . they have some 12.5mm 63% silk 37% wool fabric that would make a *lovely* scarf! But they sell only whole yards, so a scarf would cost $28.34 plus shipping, and I don't want white.

Hmmm a pre-made 35" x 35" scarf is $16.23.  Five inches smaller than I'd make.  So I folded and pinned a forty-eight-inch scarf to thirty five and tried it on.  Clearly intended to be tied under the chin -- so that's why we never tied our scarves at the back of the neck in the forties -- but if I wrapped it around my neck, it overlapped enough to pin.  That would eliminate the bits that sometimes poof into the sight of my rear-view mirror.  But it would be more trouble to put on.  But a white scarf is acceptable.

Kneeling to measure the cloth in half, I realized that that would make the blanket two yards and twelve inches long, if I took only half an inch at each end for the hem.  So I measured a blanket that is barely long enough.  Two yards nine and a half inches.

Back to the pin-marking.

My original plan was to take pins from between earlier pins when I ran out; after all it's theoretically possible to do the job with only two pins.  But when I moved a dramatically-bent pin, I thought I should take this opportunity to inspect each pin as I removed it and throw out the defective ones, so I opened the box of red-head pins that I bought when I noticed that my supply of white-head pins was getting tight.  I took out a few, being very careful not to fluff up those that remain, put them on my Grabbit, and finished the job.

When it was time to pull the pins out, I put the good ones on the Grabbit and the bad ones on a magnet I'd snitched off the fridge.  Much to my surprise, there were only four pins to be added to the bent-pin repository.  Perhaps I didn't examine the pins carefully enough.

The cat is curled up on the fabric -- it's already too late to keep the cat fur off -- so I'm going to leave him there and go to bed myself.  Then I'll finish the cut, brush the half that I plan to put back into the blanket box, and tumble it in a hot dryer for a while.  Perhaps I should move it directly from the dryer into the freezer, just to be sure.


18 January 2019

The scrap is in the laundry closet, awaiting attention.  This evening, I cut the blanket piece in half, with the cat's help, and pinned the lap seam to sew it into a blanket.  I was inclined at first to hand-baste it with 100+ to be sure the stripes match, but realized that it would be easier to stroke and stretch it on the bed of the sewing machine than to do so on my lap.  Lacking a smooth-topped piece of furniture of the correct height, I put a magazine-style advertisement on my knee to do the pinning.

When I went hunting for black silk to thread the sewing machine, I remembered that I also have gray silk.  But a strand of the gray laid on the gray flannel shines bright, while a strand of black disappears.

I also found part of a spool of black spun silk, probably bought before I got access to Superior Threads, and I think I'll use that up on the basting pass.  Spun silk should blend into the fuzz better even though it's thicker.

But I suspect that there is significantly more thread on the bobbin than on the spool.

The selvages on this fabric are flat and even and eminently usable -- except for the orange threads that I at first took for sun fading even though there is no sun in the blanket box.


19 January 2019

I thought that four rows of black zig-zagging would dim the orange a bit, but on the bed the orange seam is more conspicuous than the orange edges.

I learned, rather late, that when you are matching stripes on a lap seam, you need to put the pins at right angles to the seam, to secure only a point.


Tuesday, 22 January 2019

I'm wearing briefs #6 with no elastic and no inventory mark.  Inserting elastic is the perfect interruptable job to do between loads of wash, but I'm still recovering from yesterday's shopping trip, and have just enough mental power to do the wash.  Perhaps after my nap.

The spun silk nearly finished the basting passes.  I didn't make a dent in the bobbin, so I put the empty spool back into the bag with it.  Also there is a bit of yellow wool with a threaded #10 needle stuck into it in the hole of the spool.


Wednesday, 23 January 2019

I moved the wide linen fabric from the laundry room to the newly-available closet.  Now I can open the dryer door!

I had already moved the cottons, which take up more rod space.  There are three hangers of linen and six of cotton.

Two of the cottons are, as near as I can tell without unfolding them, an osnaburg tablecloth and an osnaburg curtain.  The tablecloth is not made of the same osnaburg that I bought so much of to make curtains for three rooms and two doorways, but something thicker.  Seems to be a tad loose of weave; this might be something I can use when I've used up the unwashed osnaburg for my embroidery gig.  If I ever get another gig.

Another two hangers are rather a lot of black twill and somewhat more white twill, which I thought handy to have on hand for pockets and the like.

The remaining two are a red-checked damask that I bought when I thought I would want to make several tablecloths and aprons, and some orange duck I bought by mistake when I wanted to make yellow aprons for the Auxiliary fire committee.  As far as I know, the Auxiliary still doesn't have a turn-out uniform.

The red-checked apron is still in use, the two tablecloths are not.  When I went to the laundry room to count the tablecloths, I found an alphabet book in progress (the baby is a grandfather), and two stained osnaburg tablecloths that I mean to make into dish towels when there is a need for them.

In the afternoon I embroidered inventory marks on briefs 6, 5, and 4.  It was convenient that the seven-segment displays of those numbers can be represented by six, five, and four bar tacks.

It also helped that I could see the wash-out numerals through the fabric, to guide me in embroidering them backward on the inside.

After supper I'll embroider three orange bar tacks on #3 and be done.

It's just as well that I chickened out of embroidering the last inventory mark.  Looking around for something useful to do before vegging out on the Web and usenet, I saw my blue hat on the ironing board and thought of working a hexagram over one of the holes, but that is also a mind-engaged job, then I noticed a little crocheted hexagram that has been lying on the board for ages waiting for me to find something to sew it to -- perfect!

And I did a perfectly-appropriate job of sewing it on:  neat, but not out of proportion to a gardening hat.

I missed half the hole.

When I looked for threads to make the inventory marks, I was startled that there is no floss in the backpack, then remembered putting all the stuff that belongs in the flat upper compartment into the keyboard box where I keep extras.


24 January 2019

I'm cutting 33" pieces of cord elastic and putting them into 32" waist casings.  No wonder I didn't miss the elastic while I was wearing #6!


29 January 2019

I washed #6 yesterday, and today I put elastic in it.  In the process, I found #5, which I'd rolled up and put into the arm of the futon with the tools when I got tired of mending gaps.  I left the bag of tools and both briefs on the eating table, so I'll be sure to notice them in the morning.

I've written on my shopping list that I want a spool of really-pale blue cotton thread.  That will be after I've mended all the gaps with a grayish baby blue.

At every gap, one of the four ends is grease stained.  At the beginning end -- I think.  I can't figure what is doing it.  Perhaps cleaning and re-oiling the shuttle race again will mysteriously clear it up.  Nothing in there has dirty grease on it, and if there were, it would get on the stitches, not just the end.

I'm concentrating on bedding for a while.  I pulled a sheet blank off the pile of muslin, and I intend to make the remaining gray windowpane wool into another blanket.  And then hem both blankets.

After having another dither over my scraps of silk.  They would be nice -- but spectacular.  Spectacular and bedtime don't mix.

This leaves one pre-torn sheet on the stack of muslin.  One blank on the ironing board, one finished sheet on the bed, one finished sheet in the linen closet.

Much to my surprise, one linen sheet is still hanging in there.


30 January 2019

This morning I cut the flannel in half and pinned a lap seam.  The Necchi is still set up with black silk.

I remembered to use right-angle pins.  I had to separate the seam to get my fingers under the seam to pin it, so I matched a stripe, stretched the seam to verify that I'd matched the correct stripe, and stuck a pin into a stripe between that stripe and the previous pin.  The weight of the fabric pulling on the seam sometimes caused difficulty.

When I was nearly done, I realized that I wanted the pins stuck the other way around, so I went back up the seam reversing them.  I quickly learned to stick a pin in the stripe adjacent to a pin or between two pins before pulling a pin.  This process made the pins closer together, and there weren't a lot left on the Grabbit.  Sometimes I stuck a few pins into the fabric to make them easier to pick up.

After my nap, I sewed the first and hardest row of zig-zag of the seam.  I found that close- together pins were a very good idea.  The pins definitely didn't get flicked out of the way as the needle approached! If only because they would have been lost in the waves of wool; each went back onto the Grabbit as soon as it was pulled.

After supper, I still felt intelligent enough, but I couldn't see what I was doing by the overhead light, and with all that wool to shove through, I couldn't put the headlamp back on the machine.


31 January 2019

While attmpting to use the headlamp to thread a needle, I learned that the control circuits have decayed.  One can light two of the LEDs, or four other LEDs, but not all eight.  I'd noticed odd behavior, but I hadn't taken it off and looked into it while switching.  I guess I'd better put "headlamp" on my shopping list.

I finished the lap seam this morning.  I wasn't as careful as I was with the first blanket.

While sewing the last pass, I managed to put the needle through a fold of the blanket and had to cut the thread to get it out.  Then I ran out of thread and put on the almost-empty spool, thinking that this was a good time to use it up.  It lasted until I was exactly seven of the little windowpane squares from the end.  My pocket ruler says that that was a smidge more than three inches.

That left a lot of thread ends on the seam, some of them almost long enough to save for hand sewing, but when I spread the blanket out on the bed, I couldn't find one single loose thread.  It didn't help that variations in the weave give the illusion of black threads wandering over the surface.

!! My horsehair clothing brush!

So I brushed both sides of the seam.  I found some white hairs, but no black threads.  There were a couple of false alarms when I saw a black thread, but brushing the fuzz smooth erased it.

While examining the blanket, I decided to finish the raw edges by turning exactly on a white thread to make a 3/7" hem, and zig-zaging twice.  Rather like the dish-towel hem at

My handy-dandy solar calculator makes the squares just a tad under 1.1 cm.

But hemming the blanket can wait until I've hemmed the sheet.

And now it's past nap time.


1 February 2019

From 2018SEW1HTM:  "I pinned hems the width of an appointment card in the muslin this morning."  [I used a business card instead.  I wonder what "brittle brackle" is?] [Wikipedia never heard of it, but it has heard of "butter brickle".]

I've pressed the turn-under in one end of the muslin.  Because of the volume of the fabric, I've decided to finish one hem before starting the other.

I ironed a shirt a few days ago, and found the dimmer switch quite hot when I turned it off.  Ooops! We were careful to use a porcelain fixture that could stand that much current and a "drop cord" that could stand that much current, and Dave cut the cord to exact length to cut down on the resistance -- but by the time we put in a dimmer switch we'd forgotten that the iron outlet is on the same switch as the light.  A dimmer switch is not designed to take that much current!

The first suggestion was that I plug the drop cord into another outlet when ironing, but the uninterruptable power supply is plugged into the only outlet available, and it isn't that uninterruptable.  It's designed to allow an orderly shut-down.  After dithering and franticking a bit, we realized that the UPS has two surge-protection outlets that we don't use for the computers, and they are on the more-convenient end.

So I pulled the plug of the drop cord and plugged it into the UPS to press the turn-under.  Worked, and nothing got hot, but the plug is hard to pull out and push in.  I rubbed the prongs with a little contact cleaner on a rag, and it helped a little -- and made the prongs look better -- so I took another rag and cleaned the prongs on the iron plug.

Looking to see how I hemmed the sheets brought my attention to the shelf-cleaning and the remark that it was a pity I found a place for my hams without being obliged to tidy the end of the fiction shelf.  Which caused me to reflect that if I put the iron down there, I could stand it on its heel and put it away hot.  The shelf where it was is just a hair's breadth too low to allow that, and it has been annoying.

Then I noticed that if the iron and the "baby gown" box swapped places, I could put the iron away standing up -- and not have to bend over to get it off the fiction shelf.  Saved from tidying again!

After my nap, I sewed the first hem, then pressed and pinned the other.  Not quite enough time before supper to stitch it, and it will be too dark to do so afterward.  But the sun doesn't set until 6:00 (18:00) now.

It was, indeed, much easier to press and pin the hem without worrying about what the other end was doing.

Also, the plug went in and out a little easier than when I tested it earlier.  I think that I'm working corrosion out of the socket.  It probably also picks up a little lube from the prongs.  So I should clean the prongs again soon.


Saturday, 2 February 2019

So much for being bright-eyed and alert in the morning! While sewing the other hem, I wandered off the fold four or five times.  So after mending those places, I examined the hem I sewed yesterday, and it is perfect.

Probably a good time to take a walk, leaving the house for the first time since Sunday.  I'll suit up as soon as I fold the new sheet and put it away.


5 February 2019

hemp-cotton briefs Yesterday, while I was waiting for a load of wash, I sewed up the elastic gaps in 5 and 6.

And writing that required me to move my to-do list from 2018SEW2.HTM to this file.  Must make a note of it in the weblog -- and get on with closing 2018.

I've decided how to finish the two blankets.  A Creative Sewing poster said that a patented hemming method is detailed in the current Threads -- to which I have no access.  She said that one folds under a quarter inch and top stitches -- which is hardly a patentable idea; I've been making once-folded hems for decades, so there must be a bit more to it.  But it made me realize that on windowpane fabric, folding just one repeat right on the white thread would make a neater finish than my usual inch, so I'm going to hem the new blankets.  Two rows of zig-zag, as usual.

I still fancy piecing silk scraps into a binding, but not for these blankets.

The scissors I keep in the drawer of the Necchi have been missing for weeks.  They have to be within arm's reach of the machine! Meanwhile, I put the loop attached to the White's scissors around my neck every time I borrow them.  The timer pocket keeps them from rattling around.


6 February 2019

I sewed one of the four hems today.  I started pinning the fold, then when reaching for pin #5, I realized that I was putting the pins so close together that I might as well baste.

I wanted to work off a spool, but the spool of #50 black installed on the Necchi appears to be my only one, so I used the White bobbin that was in the bag where the spool belongs.  It fit into my timer pocket nicely; a spool would have been reluctant to unwind.

Basteing instead of pinning made me turn the white line a bit farther to the wrong side, so that I could use it as a stitching guide.  Ten feet is a bit much for basteing off the spool, so I cut off at the center seam, and paid more attention to taking long stitches thereafter.

I emptied the bobbin before I'd finished the first row of zig-zag, which caused me some concern because that is my last spool of black #50, I'd sewn some off it, and I can put an entire spool of Size A on a forty-yard bobbin.  But I let the winder run until it snapped shut, and there is still plenty on the spool.  A hundred meters is only eleven yards longer than a hundred yards.  #50 must be significantly thicker than size A.


8 February 2019

This morning, I stitched the hem that I basted yesterday, and still appear to have plenty of thread on the spool.  I basted with black 100+ to economize the #50 silk, and put one stitch in each square, which kept my stitches long.  The spool was, indeed, harder to stitch from than the bobbin.  I should have put it into my timer pocket, sideways so it could roll.

The turn-under is exactly as wide as the presser foot, which made it easy to put the first row of zig-zag exactly down the middle.

Hope I remember all that, because I plan not to start hemming the other blanket until I'm sure I can put it back on the bed before bedtime.

In the afternoon, I picked out the hems of my charcoal-gray suit pants.  This proved easier than I expected, but I had to keep shifting the work into the sunlight whenever I picked a thread.

I'd expected it to be very difficult because the fine black thread is sunk into the fabric and impossible to see, but it turned out to be a strong smooth filament thread -- I'll have to sort through my synthetics; I don't recall ever having anything but fuzzy chopped-staple polyester and a couple-few of spools of vintage nylon, none of them black, and a very coarse "bonded" nylon.  And the thread on the lace side matches the lace perfectly.  I was surprised, upon picking it out, to see that is came from a spool of gray "subsilk" thread that I still have.  I saved a few of the longer snippets and held one against the spool to make sure.

It wasn't quite as easy as snipping the gray thread in a few places and pulling the black thread right out, partly because I didn't realize, before doing the first leg, that both rows of stitching and the securing of the overlap had been done in one pass.  I had made the hem by turning up an inch and appliquéing gray lace over it.

I think I shall turn the hem up on a thread-marked line, verify the length, then sew the lace onto the outside bottom of the pants with the scalloped side just barely hanging over, turn up on the marked line again, and top-stitch the scalloped side.

I was thinking that I'd have to wind a gray bobbin, but I'll want the gray thread in the needle both times.  I may use some random bobbin of subsilk in the bobbin for the first stitching because it will be hidden inside the hem, and I might want to take it out again some time.


12 February 2019

hem up pants of gray suit

While pinning the hem up to try it on, I decided to just sew it that way, using the old hem for a turn-under.  The lace is pretty, but I don't even see it myself -- and there are tiny holes in the pants.

Then I put darts in the fronts of the legs of my black grubbies, thereby covering small holes in the knees.  The last time I took in the legs of grubbies, I trimmed the darts and covered the raw edges with zig-zag, but there isn't that much wear left in these.  I stitched a toe's width from the seam, then turned around and stitched back down along the fold.

I sewed it on the treadle.  I thought it would be hard to stitch lengthwise on a flatbed, but I just turned the leg inside out and smoothed a couple of inches at a time, and the teacup didn't get in my way at all, though there were a couple of times I was glad that I've learned how to start the treadle without pushing the handwheel.

It probably would have been a different story if I'd made the pants close-fitting, as was my goal the previous time I darted sweat pants.  I made the darts two inches wide at the bottom, which took out four inches in each leg, and the pants don't miss it at all.

I folded the leg, right-side out with the seams matched at the bottom and enough off to lie flat at the top, then stroked the length of an appointment card with my nonce pencil.  Then I laid my twenty-four-inch ruler with one corner on the fold, one corner on the edge of the hem, and the edge touching the top of the appointment-card line, and drew the rest of the stitching line.


14 February 2019

According to the creases inside the hem, the flowered skirt was taken up first one inch, then half an inch since it was last washed.  I'm inclined to "awk scrickle I'm shrinking fast!", but it's really that my fear of tripping over my hem is growing fast.

The to-do list says to take it up two inches, but I tried both skirts on (and then measured them against each other: they are precisely the same length) and decided that one inch would be enough.  But I plan to use the White's longest stitch (five to the inch) to sew the hem.

I seem to have come close to that last time, as the hem was easy to remove.  Oddly, the needle thread was easier to pull than the bobbin thread.  So I'd pull until the rumples got hard to move, cut the thread an inch or two beyond them, pull the thread out, then pick up the freed bobbin thread, pop a stitch through by pulling on it, cut it an inch or two beyond that, pull the bobbin thread out, turn the work over, pick up the freed end of the needle thread, and repeat.

Meanwhile, the cat curled up on the other end of the carpet sample I was using to catch the threads, so I haven't shaken it yet.

Before doing that, I put plywood on the ironing board, and went around the hem with an appointment card and my nonce pencil

Then I interrupted work to type this.  I've got one pin stuck in to hold the hem one inch wider.  Should have it sewn by supper time.  But it's time for a nap now.

hem up flowered skirt two inches

I did get it sewn by sunset.  I wish I'd begun with the black skirt, because I want to wear this one to church to make sure it's short enough before shortening the other one, and I think I wore it last Sunday.

And then I pressed it.  The fifties meaning of "pressed", i.e. ironed it without steam or sprinkling.  It needed it, as the pleats had all been pressed (literal meaning) into creases by hanging in the closet.  The creases from the previous two turn-ups also pressed out.

Ran out of bobbin thread partway around, and had to pause to re-fill it.  I did use five-to- the-inch stitches.


15 February 2019

GIMP BLANKET2.JPG and BLANKET6.JPG   Sometime yesterday I scaled two pictures and named the the links I made on 14 January.  There was a typo in one of the filespecs; instead of correcting it, I changed the link to match.

One of my two pairs of silk tights has a couple of small holes that need to be darned before they become large holes, so I've been looking for the thread I ravelled out of the pair that was too tight in the waist.  I think maybe I used it up because it is very good for fine darning.  Yesterday, inspiration struck: at least two of the silk rags I saved for making patches have the original waistbands -- I can ravel out more!

And since I don't need to get the over- enthusiastic elastic out, I don't need to find a spool to keep it on: I can ravel out one needleful at a time.

Today's chore is to get the pattern for my linen jersey down off the wall.  My newest linen jersey was made in 2010, so it may be a bit disordered.  I have quite certainly forgotten how to use it, but last time I took notes.

I did have it off the wall to use as a basis for designing my overjersey in 2014.

In moving stuff to gain access to the pattern wall, I noticed that the box my point presser is in is marked "#695 | POINT PRESSER | 1/12 DOZEN".

This also reminded me that I have a point presser.  I've never used it -- probably because I don't know that I have one.

Perhaps it would help if I took it out of the box and put it next to the sleeve board.

The woven-jersey pattern needs a list of the pieces.  I shall write it on the pattern for the back pocket, which isn't used with any other pattern.  The back pattern has a note that I used it to make my red-silk crepe underdress.  The sleeve pattern was used to make the taxicab jersey and the linen-print suit that I don't wear because it's too loud.  I think I'll wear the tunic with black jeans some time.  I appear to have thrown out the sleeve pattern I used for the taxicab jersey.

I've got the front and the front yoke, the back and the back yoke, the sleeve, the back pockets, and the front pockets.  In glancing over my diary for the taxicab jersey, I see that I don't need interfacing because I'm using hook-and-eye tape.  And now I see that it's time to re-copy my shopping list again.

The collar! No pattern for interfacing; I think I'll draft a new one.  The diary said that the curry collar was an inch too short; the pattern piece says it was used for both the curry collar and the taxicab collar.  Fawchunately, both jerseys are still around.

First impression:  the complaint about the curry collar was that I never hooked the top hook.  That hook is three-fourths of an inch lower on the taxicab jersey.  Also, the curry-jersey collar is sewn with half-inch seams, the taxicab with quarter-inch seams.  That makes it half an inch longer.  But superimposing the collars shows that it's an inch longer.  Must have stretched some, and I'm using a better-quality fabric this time, and also using Pam's fusible interfacing.  But the curry collar is long enough.  Must try both on before cutting.  And carefully read the diary. I might have shifted the pattern a quarter inch from the fold.


Sunday, 17 February 2019

When ironing the skirt I wished, once again, that I knew who made the fabric. I got further proof of how good the print is this morning when I'd been fumbling with the fastenings for a while before I realized that I was putting it on inside out.

I was sure that my red silk underdress left many inches of my long slip hanging out, but if I shorten the skirt again, I'm going to have to shorten the under-dress too.

I'd be really, really worried about my back were it not that most of the things I've been shortening hang from the waist.

I think I'll start the list to be written on the pocket pattern today. I don't want to write on the pattern until I'm sure I don't want to make changes, so I'll keep the list at the bottom of this file, between two asterisms and above the stuff that is commented out. Perhaps I'll also refrain from writing "WJ#1" and so forth on the pieces until I have used all of them.



Items used to make the yellow jersey

yellow linen


9 inches hook-and-eye tape
#100/6 thread
fusible interfacing


straight-stitch treadle sewing machine
hand-sewing needles
seam ripper
magnifying glasses
ironing board
sleeve board

WJ#1 front pattern
WJ#2 front yoke pattern
WJ#3 back pattern
WJ#4 back yoke pattern
WJ#5 sleeve pattern
WJ#6 collar pattern
WJ#7 collar interfacing pattern
WJ#8 front pocket pattern
WJ#9 back pocket pattern
WJ#10 pattern
WJ#11 pattern
WJ#12 pattern
WJ#13 pattern