Monday, 25 October 2010

Old habits and new machinery

I can remember learning to sew as a young child. First the embroidered felt coasters, then clothes for my dolls and then clothes for myself. I remember helping my mum by blind stitch hemming the clothes she made for us whilst I was still too young to be trusted with a sewing machine. I took dressmaking classes at school and still remember the teacher telling us that the iron was as important a tool as the sewing machine. We had to tack (baste) all our seams by hand before machine sewing them and we weren't allowed to do gathers on the machine. They too had to be done by hand, and the stitches had to be really tiny and even. The teacher pulled them out if they weren't!
Some of these methods have obviously stayed with me for life as I still work with the iron permanently on and I do prefer to hand baste, even though it does take a lot longer to do.
I love the rhythm of hand sewing. I stitch away, listening to the radio or just quietly sew, dreaming away of all the new projects I'l make next.

That said, I love my machinery too! I have a Bernina sewing machine that was most definitely a luxury buy and three years on I'm still finding new things that it can do! I also have an overlocker (serger) to give seams a professional finish and which enables me to sew stretch fabrics beautifully.

I am lucky enough to have the space to set them up side by side so that I can switch from one to the other as I sew. My laptop sits by my side and I can watch for emails, listen to music and feel totally connected to the world whilst at the same time being in my own little stitching reverie!

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Back on Track

Hi, I'm back blogging again.
I have been absent for quite a few months! Sadly, my Dad was ill and then passed away, and between looking after him and then sorting out everything I just didn't get the time to blog, but I'm back now and I'm really looking forward to telling you all my ideas for my ever expanding Etsy shop.
I'm using organic fabric now, as well as organic yarn, and I'm really enjoying sewing again.
I was sorting out all my dad's stuff and I came across the sewing basket that my Mum had when I was a kid. I opened it up, and the chilhood memories came flooding back. There were patterns I remembered sewing when I was about 10! The same little plastic knitting needles I learned on, the half finished dolls clothes and zips unpicked from worn out clothing. (yes, I've kept them! My mum was a brilliant recycler, she would be proud of me!). There were tins of pins and spools of thread and I was hooked once more.
So began a spending spree in the fabric shops. I made some summer dresses for the children of KidsCo (I'll tell you more about them in another post) and the idea of adding organic clothing to Lovefibres was born.
I just love those little knot embellishments on the pockets.
I'll be back soon to show you what I've made next - I promise!