The Darwin Exception

because it's not always survival of the fittest – sometimes the idiots get through

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Project Fair: UPDATE

Posted by thedarwinexception on July 30, 2007

Well, the good news is I now know just about everything there is to know about my sewing machine. The bad news is, I didn’t really want to know that much.

It took me ALL DAY to embroider that stupid god damned jacket on the Winnie the Pooh set. And it ended up not even being Winnie the Pooh.

First off, it DOES make a difference how you hoop the material. I was hooping it wrong for the first 5 tries. Yes, 5 tries. I was getting so mad and so frustrated I was about ready to just say “fuck it – fuck the whole damned thing.” And then it came to me that maybe this way of hooping the material wasn’t exactly the right way.

And it wasn’t. The material didn’t slide and jump around so much when I did it the right way, which is like this:

Do you see the difference in the way the material is hooped? Yeah, well I didn’t, not for the longest time.

But it ended up that this wasn’t the whole problem, anyway. The patterns I was trying to sew out were fucked. No matter which way I hooped the thing, no matter which material I sewed it out on (and I tried several), there was no way this pattern was sewing out right I tried different threads, different stabilizers, different hooping methods, different bobbins, nothing was making it work. So much for buying patterns on the internet from “amateur” digitizers. I guess there’s a reason they were $3.00 a piece. They suck.

There are some companies with professional digitized designs, I’ll stick to them.

But, I tried all day to stitch out the Pooh designs, and it just wasn’t working. So, I switched to a different design, just to see if it was  ME, or the machine, or what the hell was going on. And it was really, really nice to have something stitch out with ease. So, instead of being a Pooh on the front of the jacket, I chose instead to pick up the flowers in the material and use those for the jacket motif,  rather than the stupid bear, and now I
have this:

Which is still nice, I guess. It isn’t EXACTLY what I wanted, but I am going to order a regular Singer or other professional design card with the Pooh designs and I’ll make the jacket again with that.

But this is the jacket as it is now – see how when the sleeves are rolled up you see the lining of the jacket?

This is the lining of the jacket and the overalls (which have no straps as of yet).

And here’s the little jacket with the shirt underneath.

So that set is done except for the snaps on the shirt and the straps on the overalls. Which should be about an hour’s worth of work. The bunting is DONE.

I LOVE the ribbons on the hood – they have pearls on the sides of the ribbon. I think they are really pretty.

And the “design my own” sweater is DONE.

The third set, which will eventually be for the AFCA baby, is done except for one half of the little matching pants that go with the sweater and deciding which buttons I want to put on the sweater.

Since there is testimony again tomorrow, I should get a lot of knitting done. I can finish the Pooh set in the morning before the trial starts, then knit the rest of the day while I watch the trial. I can’t sew and watch and take notes at the same time, because there’s no TV in the sewing room, but I can knot and watch and take notes.

But, I got quite a bit done today, despite the fact that it took me all day to embroider the jacket, and I even had to go back to Joann’s to get more material because I went through about a yard of the lilac trying to embroider Pooh on the front of the jacket. And I had to get more thread. I used a whole thing of the tan.

But, like I said, I learned a lot about my machine, which I’ll probably be happy about some day. But not today. Today I’m just tired of embroidery.




14 Responses to “Project Fair: UPDATE”

  1. what adorable creations!

    I never hoop knits…here’s what I do instead:

    I apply Fusible Tear-Away Stabilizer to the back of the knit (fabric or onesie) and hoop ONLY the stabilizer, not the knit


    I hook regular Tear-Away Stablizer, spray the back of the knit with Temporary Adhesive spray (my favorite is Sulky KK2000) and then stick the knit to the stabilizer.

    When I’m done, I remove the Tear-Away stabilizer and apply Fusible No-Show Mesh (by Florani) just to the back of the design (it protects the embroidery and is soft against the skin).


    With friendship,

  2. whoops…hook = hoop…LOL

  3. I apply Fusible Tear-Away Stabilizer to the back of the knit (fabric or onesie) and hoop ONLY the stabilizer, not the knit

    Well, I had stabilizer on the jacket when I embroidered it. I haven’t actually attempted the t-shirt yet, that was just for “illustration purposes”.

    I usually use the wash away stuff or the tear away stuff, depending on whether I want to actually see any of it on the back. On the jacket, it didn’t matter, since there was to be a lining on the inside of the jacket, so you don’t see the back of the embroidery. So I just used a regular stiff interfacing.

    But I will try your tip and see if that makes things easier.

    And I went to your site – Good Lord, now I’m 3 steps behind in the “Get Organized” challenge. I can’t wait to try some of the projects for the needles. I have them all thrown together in a Rubbermaid tub.

    My sewing room is fairly new, but it was never organized. When you get to ribbons and seam bindings and stuff – here’s my favorite tip:

    I took an empty aluminum foil roll and box and wound all my ribbons and elastic and trims around the roll, and I have all the edges hanging from the front so I can see which are in which box. If you get a good brand of foil you can even use the existing cutting edge to cut the ribbon. Doesn’t work on generic rolls, though, the cutting edge is too flimsy.

    And you can cover the box so it doesn’t look like a tin foil box.

    Of course, I’m sure there are fancier, more elegant solutions. I can’t wait to see them all – my ribbons and trims and elastic are the biggest, most disorganized “stash” I have – besides buttons. Ugh. I have billions of buttons.

    And all the sewers reading – go to her site and get organized.


  4. Glenda said

    Boy for someone who takes things to the cleaners to get hemmed, you all are talking a foreign language–something akin to quadratic trig.

    Bless you wonderful people who know how to do things like that. I have a beautiful grandson that I would love to do those kind of projects for but I have to settle for Baby Gap. My mother is a wonderful seamstress who can crochet, knit, etc. I failed Home Ec in 7th grade so she took me to a Singer sewing class when I was a teen and I flunked the class. Yep, flunked a sewing class that I paid to go to! And so she sent me again–same result. Needles and thread are not in my DNA.

    Thus, I take things to the cleaners to get hemmed. . .

  5. LOL Kim! Thanks for making me smile!

    Ironically, Part IV of the Sewing Room Organization Challenge is Ribbon, Trims and Laces. I’m DEFINITELY including your tip on the aluminum roll…how smart!

    Hope you’re having a great day!

    With friendship,

  6. Maria Chang said

    I only recently discovered your site via the CTV Spector message board. Really enjoy your blogs! Make me laugh/grin. You’re a talented writer AND sewer/tailor!

  7. Sue said

    Where do get your patience? Damn.

    Well, all the outfits are adorable, precious and beyond my scope for sure.

    What are you doing with them? Are they going to be auctioned at a fair? If so, you ought to take bids from your online admirers too.

    I loved the ribbon too.


  8. What are you doing with them? Are they going to be auctioned at a fair? If so, you ought to take bids from your online admirers too.

    Most of the stuff I sew or knit is for kid’s that belong to friends. The little Winnie the Pooh outfit is for a friend’s daughter – the bunting, well, I don’t know who the bunting is for yet – the baby I was originally making it for has long since outgrown it and the “design your own” sweater and the striped sweater are probably going to the new AFCA baby. Probably the bunting, as well, unless someone else turns up pregnant.

    I’m not selling anything at the fair, I don’t think. I don’t really “sew to sell” – the minute it became a “job” I would hate doing it.

    And I really do love that ribbon.


  9. pattymac said

    If you don’t want to make things just to sell them, how about auctioning something for your favorite animal charity? I have a grandson on the way and I would love to buy something knowing the proceeds would go to animals. Not that I want to pressure you or anything. I don’t know how you do all you do. And I’m a person that used to make all my own clothes and even made my girlfriend’s wedding dress. But that was before I had a computer and cable tv! Now everything goes to the tailor even if it’s just to shorten a hem.

  10. Oh Geesh Patty! When is your grandson due? I would LOVE to make something for him – I wish I had known – when I went to Joann’s last weekend they had some really wonderful Bernat Baby Softee yarn on sale and it was this gorgeous blue and white stripe – and I kept thinking “Should I get this – I know *no one* having a boy!” I’ll have to go back and see if they still have any of it.

    it’s the “soft blue”

    And it’s *because* of the tv I can knit so much – I can’t just sit and watch tv – it’s like a huge waste of time to me, I have to be doing something else, too, while I watch – so I knit. The Spector trial has done *wonders* for my knitting. I never would have been able to complete 3 different knitted outfits in under a month withut the Spector trial. Never would have happened. The bunting alone I had been working on for over a year until the trial started.


  11. pattymac said

    The baby is due in September and will be named Hobbes. I think that trumps Precious. Your niece wasn’t named after a comic strip! Hobbes McLaughlin, sounds like a future ballplayer to me.

    That yarn is so pretty. I used to crochet and I should pick it up gain because I have to do something when I watch tv, too.


  12. The baby is due in September and will be named Hobbes.

    Ya know, now that I hear the name again, I remember you mentioneing that in AFCA.

    But, I got some yarn today – I’m thinking I’ll make him a little hoodie sweater – I’ve been wanting to try a hoodie sweater.

    I’ll post some pictures as it progresses.


  13. pattymac said

    You are too nice. And I would love to make a donation to that animal place you like. Or I could hire somebody to install hidden cameras in the formerly dead lady’s house. I wonder how much that would cost. You’d have something to watch when the Spector trial is over.


  14. You are too nice.

    Hehehehehe. Yeah, right.

    And I would love to make a donation to that animal place you like.

    That would be lovely. Tell them I sent you. I adore them and the work they do. The lady that runs the place is who I would love to be if I had 40 acres and 20 years to live. She’s really a gem for this community and for oue animals. She doesn’t get enough recognition – or funds. She does all her work out of her own pocket and the donations she gets.

    When she offered to pay for Holly to be spayed, I was flabbergasted and told her “Well, look, how about you provide transportation” (because I need that more than the funds) “and I’ll pay for Holly and one of your other dogs.”

    Or I could hire somebody to install hidden cameras in the formerly dead lady’s house.

    OOOOhhhhhh!!! I like that idea! I have a couple of new things to tell about her – some odd shit going on over there. I’ll post later when I post my awards.


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