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Sewing, My First Love

Well, not counting Bruce....

Some of you may, or may not know, that when I was a girl my dream was to work for a newspaper. I loved writing from the time I could actually form letters, however, that was not to be. Instead of a creative career, I ended up in medicine which is so darn crazy as I am so bad at science. It is a real wonder that I ever got through all the physics, as well as other science subjects needed to get through x-ray school! But so I did, and actually ended up loving the job, mostly because I got to work with people. Not once did anyone ask me how the x-ray tube worked, so that was good. :)

In lieu of writing, which was a long shot I began sewing. It is a wonder I ever learned to sew, according to my 8th grade Home Economics teacher, who claimed I would never learn! Obviously she was wrong, and once I got the hang of it, I sewed, and sewed, and sewed.When you are from a family with five girls, and love clothes, which I most certainly did back then, you can do whatever you set your mind to! No longer do I sew every day, however, when the mood strikes, or a need exists, I am thrilled to sit at the machine!

Sunday we awoke to wet everything from overnight showers. Because the ground was so wet, we decided it would be such a hassle to set up at the market, we stayed home instead. Among other things, I cleaned up my office, including the closets, bookshelf, and the floor where all that fabric was still in a holding pattern. While doing so, I came across this photo, probably at least 25 years old, that melts my heart. Perhaps I've shown it before, but I just love it so much.
That would be me and my little Jon boy when his brothers were in school. If he isn't the cutest, I don't know who is! I, of course, am wearing an home made dress. The perm? I don't know what to say about that! The fan--no air conditioning. To my left is my serger, and to the right is my Mom's old Elna sewing machine, which I inherited, although I don't exactly remember why. Bruce and I were talking about that serger last night--he remembers buying it on layaway as it was very expensive back then, and with four children to care for, it was quite the sacrifice on his part. The name of the machine was Baby Lock, which I've found reviewed here. I spent part of most every day sitting at that sewing table, always left up in our bedroom, making everything from pillows to "knock offs." I can still remember how proud I was when I made look-alike Levi's jackets for the twins. Jams--remember them? So, having sons did not stop me from sewing!

Sadly, while finishing an applique on a quilt for Matt way back when he was at FSU, my Elna died. I was heart broken giving that machine up, particularly, the knee drive. What do I mean by that? Well, instead of the more common foot pedal, there was a 45 degree piece of metal, attached to the body of the machine that was the mechanism used to sew. Once I replaced it with my current Bernina, it took me quite the while to adjust to using my foot!

Sunday, aside from the cleaning, I began making Christmas bunting for my booth.  The last time I made bunting I struggled with how to cut out the perfect triangles; this time Bruce made me a template.
I'd purchased 1/4 yard of seven different fabrics at Hobby Lobby. Using the rotary cutter, I cut them all out, with right sides together, and began chain sewing.
Chain sewing is the most efficient way to combine fabric pieces that are all the same. What it means is that you never lift the presser foot, just continue sewing while feeding in the pieces. Once all 32 triangles were sewn on one side, I cut them all apart, then sewed in the same manner on the other side. All sewn and turned, I laid out the pattern on my ironing board. I used a chop stick to push out the points, which are not great, but will be unnoticeable to most, including me once it is hanging.
Look how clean my sewing table is!!
Believe me--it looked nothing like this when the day began! My desk, where I am sitting right now typing this post, could still use some work!
I used my summer bunting, seen laying on the ironing board, as a guide for length. Next step, sewing the triangles between the layers of double fold bias tape. I chose to use zig zag for this step. In red, of course.
So, there you have it---a Christmas decoration for my booth!
Before I start a new sewing project, those photography prints, piled on my table, need signing. But then again, Sunday is a long way away......
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