Monday, March 28, 2011

I'm sewing

I did find the needles I was looking for. And in today's mail a package of goodies arrived that cheered me right up!
When I was at Helene's I fell in love with these "Ewesful" felt pincushions and simply had to have one.  Well, ok - three. (remember, my grandfather was nicknamed Carload Charlie).  They are delicious and I plan to take two to the studio and keep one here - or vice-versa.  The little baggie is full of seam rippers because I am always losing them.  These are small but there are 10 of them. They seem to work, so far.

Yes, I have a needle in my hand.  I also have two pairs of pants I bought for Marty that are too long and I have to hem them. Shudder.  I cannot sew. I especially cannot make a hem that will stay up, for whatever reason.  The stitches are too big or too loose or too tight or too crooked. They show on both sides of the thing I am hemming. They last about three months and down they come, no matter what I do.

NO - I don't want hints on how to make a good hem. I have always attributed this clumsiness to the fact that I am left-handed, but I suspect there are other left-handed people out there who can stitch a hem that will stay up forever. I am not one of them. Nor do I aspire to be one.  I cannot sew a proper button, either.  For 29 years my husband has been taking things to the tailor, but @ $9.99 a pair at K-Mart for these nylon, drawstring waist knock-arounds, I refuse.  Have done one pair and can't face the other one tonight. On to stitching down the binding on Emma's quilt. As I sew, I realize that my bindings and facings are hems but they always last forever, unlike the garment hems.  Mental block brought on by Miss Schwenk, my 7th grade sewing teacher.  It is a wonder I love to cook, since she taught that, too.  But I digress...

In truth, I did some other sewing tonight - quite unexpectedly.  This coming Saturday I really want to go to the NY Metro Mod Quilters meeting in Manhattan.  I find it refreshing to be with all these young(er) quilters who are not afraid to play and don't need to follow the quilt police rules. Many are self-taught and I see some future art quilters in the group.  As I said on one of the lists, they have discovered quilts and are putting their own original twists into their work: bright colors, funky layouts - fun, fun, fun instead of worrying about perfect 1/4" seams.  We meet at Victoria Findlay's loft and whoever turns up, turns up. I can't explain why I contribute blocks to the group quilts - but one month every block had to have cheddar in it.  Emma's quilt started with the cheddar block i did not send.  I missed a few meetings but this time, the theme was stripes.  I got the e-mail reminder today and decided this was going to be my therapy sewing for the week.  Two blocks: 10.5x10.5 and 5.5 x 10.5.  They could be sewn stripes or 
striped fabric.  Of course, i sewed.
The second block started with leftovers from the first with a few other leftovers from around the room. Stripes made with stripes.
With that, I've done enough for the day. Tomorow I will go to the studio for an hour or two and then am treating myself to a lovely lunch out with a friend.


Helen Conway said...

I know you said you didn't want hem sewing tips but sometimes we don't get what we want in life. I just have to say: Fusible web. The quarter/ half inch tape kind. Made for all hem incompetents like us!

Eva said...

I used to be a member of the club. My seams... Mental blocks, right. I've been thinking about them a lot. They should not be underestimated! A teacher caused one of mine, too, it was about physical abilities. Sports teachers were Nazis to me, I spent most of my life without sports. Then I decided not to let that hag rule my life any more!

Cécile said...

I always start my classes by telling my students that I can't sew - they laugh, but it is true. I bet there are lot's of textile artists with little sewing skills.
Your blocks are gorgeous! they call for a full size quilt, don't you think?

Mostly Turquoise said...

Why worry about hems? You can't be good in everything, is it?
The work for the group in Manhattan looks great, I hope the weather is getting more springlike over there, at least the fabrics in your work will make people more happy, enjoy your Monday,
grtz, Regina, SXM

tiedyejudy said...

I see we all share horror stories about 7th (and 9th grade) sewing classes! I don't do zippers or button-holes, and still can't alter a pattern to fit me, so I rarely sew clothing. I did get a very good grounding in hemming, though... Mom sewed our clothes and I got to hem them! Guess it's all in what you feel comfortable doing. BTW, love the ewesful pin cushions!

Judy said...

I've always loved those pincushions, but have never purchased one. The colors are so fetching!


Liz said...

You and me both Rayna!

I had to keep turning up DSes hems of school trousers and putting patches on them and in the end I used the powdered fusible glue - a good thick layer!!! I don't think they appreciated the stiffness but at least they didn't have holes in trousers! Glad those days are nearly over... (in fact I think DS3 is too busy hanging round listening to his ipod or chatting up girls to play rugby in the school yard these days...)

Cindy Cooksey said...

I hadn't realized that you were a lefty, too. I can do hems, but directions for some things, like knotted cording, is just so difficult for me. I want to go the "wrong" direction," and then I get mixed up.

Leslie Tucker Jenison said...

i love the NYC Metro Mod Quilters! Many were at the Alliance events 2 weekends ago, and I hung with some of them at their sew-in at City Quilter. Fun group!