Friday, July 12, 2013


Since coming back from my sewing lull, my brain has been brimming with new ideas and projects to start.  One of those ideas is to make curtains for several rooms, but specifically for my guest bedroom.  This room used to be an office, and had sheer curtains, but now that it will be used as a guest bedroom, it needs more privacy.  I bought some outdoor fabric that I think will work great as curtains.  It is the same thickness as my dining room curtains - it lets the light through, but you can't see through it.

I wanted something that would fun, interesting, and gender neutral.  I will have to keep the bedding calm and plain (maybe solid?) to avoid overwhelming the tiny room.

Blind Hem Stitch by Machine

When I had the demo for the new sewing machine, one of the things she showed me was the blind hem stitch.  I've actually had several demos for machines and they almost always showed off the blind hem stitch.  I remember thinking, "hey, why are you showing me this stitch - I have that on my old machine!"  They really didn't spend as much time showing off the fancy stitches.  But the interesting thing is, that even though my old machine had this stitch, I didn't really know how to use it. The fact that they use this stitch in every sewing demonstration shows that many people like this feature, even though they don't use it.

I realized as I was holding the curtain fabric on my lap, that these curtains would give me a great chance to try out the blind hem stitch.  I had to look up some youtube videos for blind hem stitch, so I would remember how to use it. Another video showed that you could fold the fabric down as usual and pin it, then stitch it down.  The trick is in knowing how to fold the fabric and this one shows the fold more clearly.

The curtains aren't finished - I got distracted by another idea, okay maybe more than one.  I will show the finished curtains to you when they are done.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Viking Sewing Event

Tulip Pillow made at Viking Sewing Event

Earlier this year, my trusty 24-year-old Kenmore gave out on me.  It seemed like it was a goner, and I started thinking about getting a new machine.  I tinkered some more with the Kenmore and think I have fixed it, but I haven't had time to work with it during the busy season at work.  But the yearning for a new machine didn't leave me, and I broke down and bought a new machine, the Husqvarna Viking 650 with lots of stitches.  I have started writing a review for it, and want to try out some more features before I publish it.

I am still working out a schedule for my free new machine classes, but in the meantime, I received an email on Tuesday about a Sewing Event.  Pay a small fee for supplies and lunch, and come in for six hours.  On Thursday.  Talk about short notice!  I am still working, but I have flexible hours, so I decided to take the day off.  Of course, my boss decided I had a deadline on Thursday, so I worked late on Wednesday and early Thursday morning in order to meet it. Phew! That was tiring.

On Thursday, I went to Joann's (the Viking store is inside Joanns, but it is a separate entity).  I thought I would be the only person there, or one of a few, but there were more than 10 people!  I missed the introductions so I wasn't quite sure what was going to happen, but it turned out that we were all making a pillow.

Watching Embroidery Machine Doing All the Work

We first sewed the triangles onto the center square.  They set us up on the embroidery machine, and we could watch the design show up on our piece.  Then we chose our own quilting stitches and locations, and put a backing to make a pillow.

It was, as expected, a way to drum up sales - check out our wonderful embroidery machine, on sale now!, the embroidery software that lets you design your own embroidery designs, how about a new quarter inch foot with a flange to keep your fabric from wandering off (which I really want now), etc.

It is a beautiful pillow, and it is amazing all the wonderful features that are available today.

Embroidery and Quilting Stitches on Tulip Pillow
I enjoyed the class, but it didn't have the satisfaction of making something.  Part of it is the fact that I made the same thing as everyone else.  I always change up patterns to avoid having something that looks exactly like someone else's.  Personally, the joy for me in quilting is the designing and making part, and not the finished product, so having a machine that does everything for me was somewhat disappointing.    It was a good lesson for me to learn, though, because I had been eyeing the embroidery machines, especially the ones that let you design your own patterns, and now I know that I made the right choice with the machine I did buy.