What a long last couple of weeks it has been! I think the stress has finally caught up with me, I’ve had some pretty miserable neck/shoulder pain off and on for the last three days and I can’t decide if its getting better or if I should go see a doctor. So I’m just taking it easy today, trying to avoid anything too strenuous, like craning my neck down to see what I’m sewing, so the fall back is blogging about what I should be doing if I were at 100%. :)
I helped put on an activity for the young women at church to get some trek clothing prepared last night. Trek is a four day hike where the youth dress as pioneers and pull handcarts around, a sort of simulation of what the pioneers would have gone through while crossing the plains. From what I hear, it is a great experience and I would love to go, but I haven’t prepared physically at all and I have a grumpy, teething one-year-old that needs taken care of.
Anyways, they asked me to be the unofficial “clothing specialist” for our group and it has certainly put on the stress! It wouldn’t have been so bad, but I am in a mad rush to try and get these alterations done for my mother-in-law before she leaves town for a month. I’m thinking I probably won’t get them all done, but if I can get close, I’ll be happy. So far, I’ve finished three skirts and the last two just need to be re-hemmed (hoping to get that done later today) and then it will be onto pulling apart dresses!
Super excited to get these things done because I really want to motor through a bunch of projects that I’ve been waiting to finish/start, but these major alterations really slow me down. I think I’m just really slow at unpicking seams and because I’m doing some pretty hefty alterations, there’s a lot of seams that have to be unpicked!
Anyways, back to the trek activity. I got a bunch of resources from one of the ladies over the clothing. She sent me all these online tutorials to make things, so I figured I would just use those instructions to demo how to make each piece of clothing. But I wanted to test them out so I ran to Jo-Ann’s (since I don’t really have many quilting cottons) and picked out a nice deep orange for a skirt, a tan floral print for an apron, and this awesome teal polka-dot fabric for the bonnet. I forgot to take pictures of the finished products before I lent them out, but I have a picture of the fabric I used.
I’m also making a second set since I bought the material to do demos, but everyone ended up doing their own thing, so I’m just going to make them and lend them out to people to use. I think the second set will be just as cute, though it is much more “girly.”
I’m trying to decide if I should do my own tutorial or not, but I probably won’t since I hate how much time it takes to do them. I used these online tutorials to make the items:
Which reminds me, I finally broke my first seam ripper. I was working on my test run trek skirt and I put the button in the wrong place. I was using my seam ripper to get the button back off and the end just snapped right off! I guess I sewed that button on a lot tighter than I thought! So I finally bought a nice new seam ripper. I guess they don’t make them any more special than the basic ones, but it has a little ergonomic handle and its green, which is my favorite color!
For this activity, I wasn’t sure if we would have enough sewing machines, so I went and pulled my old Brother out. I broke it a long time ago sewing an elastic casing for a dress I made my sister. I put a lining in it which gave the casing a couple more layers and the machine couldn’t handle it. I think I was finishing off a pretty heavy seam with a zig zag and all of a sudden it just sort of gave up and would only do a straight stitch. Anyways, after pulling it out, I figured it probably needed a major cleaning and maybe that would help. Holy cow, there was so much lint under that bobbin case! Poor machine!
Sadly, it didn’t fix the problem of not catching the zig zag stitch, though it certainly sounds better when you sew. I’ll probably have my grandpa take a look at it and see what’s going on. Hopefully he can fix it and I can send the machine off with a sibling or something where it has more potential to get used.
They just announced the winner for the Belcarra blouse sew-along giveaway yesterday… I didn’t win. :( However, I did enter Sew News hotpatterns.com Summer Breeze Sleeveless Tops sew-along. I actually saw this picture of this blouse on Flickr a while back and I really wanted to figure out what pattern it was because I really liked it… I finally got my answer!
All you had to do was join the Flickr group for a chance to win and my name was drawn to win the pattern for free! I just got it yesterday, and I’m super excited! I completely forgot about it until I opened up the package!
I’m a little bummed because the pattern is in this massive envelope and the pieces are printed on normal paper. I know a lot of people like the immediate gratification of buying a PDF pattern, even though you have to piece it together or whatever, but I really prefer tissue paper (I don’t have to piece this one together thankfully!). Just a little annoyed because this pattern isn’t going to fit in with all my other ones! :P I’m not sure that I’m going to get around to joining the actual sew-along, but I’m definitely going to add this to my summer project list (that’s already a mile long… -_-) Ah well, that’s how my life is going right now!