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Sunday, February 15, 2015

Missing in Sewing Angst


The last few days have seen me missing in sewing  (angst) action.  I decided I had better get busy and sew the garments I needed before the semester starts.  I also decided I better sew DH's birthday present.  His birthday isn't until May, but I don't want a sewing deadline ahead of me during semester time.  So I did some fast and furious industrial attitude sewing and have run up two flannelette nightshirts.


Since I took these photos last night, I have done the hems and turned up the cuffs.  All the loose ends are darned in and I am ready to mark the buttonholes.  I'll have to do these on my industrial zig zag, which means the old fashioned operator skill approach.  I just think that the big machine will sew the thicker fabric with more ease than the domestic machines.  Any imperfections will get lost in the fluff in any case.

The nightshirts were not without some angst.  I found that my overlocker did not like the curved edge of the facing and ran off, even though I was pinching it so it was a straight edge. The overlocking loops were hanging well over the edge and were going to snag easily.  So I had to bind the top end of the facing to eliminate a bit of the snag factor:



  Unbelievably, when I overlocked the facings and added the binding for the first nightshirt I carefully made two right facings.  So then I decided that the remaining pieces had better be two left facings.  So , you guessed it, I very carefully and automatically  made one left and one right facing.  So now I had three right facings and one left facing and no fabric left over.

So I had to undo the overlocking and binding on one of the facings and make a second left facing.   I could have been lazy and had the wrong side of the overlocking showing on the facing, but these nightshirts are a gift and I like them to look nice and have all the stitching matching inside.

Now I have finished the hems - a double hem on flannelette takes some effort to stitch, but my big machine will power through anything. 

The buttons also created a bit of angst.  I thought I had purchase buttons for this job, but no.  So I had to go to Spotlight today just to buy buttons.  What a waste of time.  I found some perfect ones, and luckily they had three cards, which is just enough.

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I'm glad I did make the nightshirts this week, even though it was an effort, because on Friday, the first of the subject outlines was put up on the interactive site for my University.  The second should go up soon.  While I will enjoy the subjects, unlike the two I did last semester, my instinct that a sewing deadline was not needed during semester was correct.  Essays, presentations, exams, readings -lots to do.  I do keep sewing, but as relaxation  with the  demands during term times.

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I've also made up a pair of pants that are a trial run garment:

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For those of you new to my blog, the above photo is taken in my sewing passage.  Yes, I sew in an old passage.  It was a bit of an unused space and has good light near the sewing machine.  It is quite long and wide.  It is a bit messy and cluttered, but I made the decision years ago that it was not worth moving just so I could have a large, airy, sewing studio about the size of a small house!  It also did not make sense to spend lots on buying and selling, and on stamp duties and all sorts of exorbitant costs, especially as we are not planning to stay here forever. One day I took a look at the passage and thought that would make a fine sewing area. DH's old files were moved out to a hot old room, and I moved in to the passage :). 

A table sits outside the entrance to the passage and that is were I do my pattern work or cutting.

Inside I have two ends to the passage.  This is the first end:


Up on one  end of the passage I keep all sorts of sewing paraphernalia, including stash, in a bookcase.  I have a cupboard with stash in it (and stuff on top) and a rack with washed fabrics such as corduroy hanging ready for use.  I also hang garments there that are either being made or are finished and waiting for blogging.

In the middle of the passage is a  table on which  I keep an overlocker and an electronic machine that does some sewing jobs. Works in progress are also housed on this table in plastic containers.  I also have a small shelving unit that houses patterns, templates and my drawing materials for patterns.


And down on the other end of the passage I have my machine and another bookcase filled with sewing bits and pieces.  And a small chest of drawers that holds all my zips, bindings, needles, scissors, elastics and so on.


It really is amazing what you can do with a passage and the right attitude.  I have had to move a lot in my life, and have learnt to make the most of wherever I am.  And I have always made room for sewing :).

While it is not pretty, it is functional, and it does work for me...

Next week I hope to show you the new pair of trousers....

Until then, take care everyone, wherever you are,

Sarah Liz




28 comments:

  1. Great looking nightshirts and the binding on the facings does make them look even better.

    Wonderful how you have made the passage work for you, to have a space to leave our goodies out and ready to sew at any time is perfect.

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    1. Thanks Sharon - and I agree, there is something really nice and reassuring about having sewing goodies out and about:)

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  2. Ace nightshirt!

    Know what you mean about being super busy for uni...

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    1. thanks - and yes, I have been thinking you must be gearing up as well...

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  3. Well done. I love the colour of these nightshirtst. It's amazing how you've got your sewing space to work for you. Good idea not to have self imposed sewing deadlines when you'll have course imposed ones. Good luck in the new term - I'm glad the subjects interest you more. That makes all the difference (to my learning at least)

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    1. Thank you - it's a great blue isn't it? Yes, when sewing it is really helpful to have an organised space, even if a bit cluttered!

      Thank you for your well wishes..I agree, learning is much more fun when it's something you want to learn about.

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  4. Lucky hubby to have a wife to sew such thoughtful gifts. I do know what you mean about sewing while you can before school starts. When I was teaching I sewed every other Saturday and cleaned the house on the alternate Saturday. How precious that Sewing Saturday was to me!!

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    1. Thank you Diana. I agree, making sacred sewing time is so important - I do like the way you organised your time so you managed to sew - housework every other week was a great solution.

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  5. Great make! I also like learning about where you sew -- I just have a wee corner of a room and my fabric stash is in my closet and my pattern stash is in a bin under my sewing table -- I long for more space but am content with what I have!

    I hope the start of your semester begins with flying colors.

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    1. Thank you Annie.

      Now about you - contentment is very important. You are still building a life, and it does take time to do this. Your solution to make a spot for yourself is just right - I can remember doing very similar things - and trying to remember where I had put things! At least you have made the start - sewing is important to you, and carving out that small area affirms this to yourself and others :)

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  6. "It really is amazing what you can do with a passage and the right attitude."

    Words of wisdom that can be interpreted SO many ways! You are just wonderful, SL!

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    1. Yes, please do apply in other areas of life - although I have to admit that I am not nearly as wonderful at following my own advice in all areas of life . Sending you well wishes...

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  7. Best wishes on your upcoming studies.
    Hubby's nightshirts are going to be great.. Know he will enjoy them,and so smart of you to get this done early.[Rushing out to buy buttons,etc really stinks...and if your like me, you will probably run across buttons that you really did already purchase,ha]
    Cant wait to see your new pants.. Happy sewing.

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    1. Thank you Judy for all your nice thoughts. I hate going out for emergency sewing supplies too - which is why I usually have a nice stash of goodies. You are right, the buttons will turn up one day...

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  8. I love to see sewers work spaces so thanks for sharing yours. Hopefully I will get my room kitted out sometime over next winter but in the meantime we have our main rooms to concentrate on!
    I like your nightshirts a lot and that piping although necessary is an added special finishing touch. Glad you go them done early. Sewing at your own pace keeps it a pleasure. Good luck with your studies :)x

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    1. Thank you :) and I remember you moving - and you are right, building your home and sorting out the main rooms is a big priority right now - but at least you have organised a spot for sewing for now.

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  9. Those nightshirts look nice and cosy. It is great to have a dedicated sewing space. Until I claimed my space I was juggling sewing and dining in the dining room.

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    1. Thank you BeaJay - you are right, unless you claim a space you will always juggle and not put sewing as a life priority.

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  10. Love the nightshirts - and you are so smart to have them made before the semester rush!

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    1. Thank you - and yes, semester will be a rush, but that means it will also pass quickly.

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  11. You are so ahead of the curve! Those nightshirts look amazingly well made! And I love your passage :) Having a dedicated sewing space is all that matters!!

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    1. Or behind the curve, Mrs Smith - it's hard to tell with curves!!!

      I agree, the dedicated sewing space does matter.

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  12. Wow, I love your sewing passage, and the way you organise it. You have far more in there than I do in a small bedroom - I should get you over here to organise me :)
    Nightshirts look amazing, and beautifully made. Your husband is a lucky guy!

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    1. Thank you - the passage is actually quite large, a small room really. I have it crammed with stuff one end, which leaves my sewing area free for sewing. I could not sew in a mess.

      I've just finished the nightshirts...thank goodness. Now for some selfish sewing.

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  13. Cozy and warm nightshirts for chilly sleeping:-) Nice that you were able to overcome your sewing inertia.

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    1. Thank you Mary - inertia comes and goes. Sometimes I think it is just that we need a rest.

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  14. I love the detail on your husband nightshirts and I am sure he will love it :)
    Nice to see your sewing space, my sewing room is very small and I use to move to the dining room when the weather getting hot :)

    Good luck on your study and can not wait to see your trousers

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    1. Thank you Hana.

      At least you have a sewing room - small is better than nothing. What a good idea to move when it gets a little hot and airless. I used to do that in some of the houses I have lived in in the past.

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