I'm struggling with my sewing at the moment. I'm bummed because I have yet to finish the stupid jeans, bummed enough to blog about it because I have no one else to talk to about it at the moment with Scott enjoying his temporary assignment in Hawaii. He owes me, big time, when he gets back home. I'm thinking he's got at least 2 weeks of bedtime duty to do so that I can get right to sewing after dinner. We'll see. These jeans are part of the never-ending SWAP that I was doing for Maeve so I really need to get them done. I've done 4 shirts, although 2 need to have the hems redone because I don't like the way they turned out; 1 pair pants; and 1 dress so far. I still have to do 2 skirts, a pair of leggings, another T-shirt and a blouse and I have to finish the vest. Soon I'll be done and I then can get to sewing for me and for Little Man. Oh, and Little Miss G has informed me that she needs another pretty dress for Easter. Thanks for giving me plenty of notice, honey.
Anyway, I was working on the black jeans last night because Miss M wanted to wear them today with her striped turtleneck and her super-cool purple converse that she got for Christmas. I could see it in her eyes that she thought that this would be a great outfit. It almost happened. I only had to stitch the belt loops, stitch and topstitch the waistband, stitch the buttonhole, apply the button and then quickly hem them. I should have been able to get this done. Alas, my sewing machine had other plans.
I had gotten all the way to the buttonhole when things started to go awry. I like to double-check my settings with a test buttonhole before I do one on the garment, just to be sure that I like the width of the zig-zag, etc. Plus, I was sewing on denim so I wanted to be sure of the stitch length. So I made a test buttonhole on the first waistband - I'd cut it too short, somehow, and I had to cut a new one. It was great to be able to do the test buttonhole on the exact thickness of fabric and interfacing that I would do the real buttonhole on, because it helped me to eliminate at few issues. I ended up doing 3 test buttonholes because I really wanted to get it just right.
When I moved to the actual pants waistband the machine decided that it no longer wanted to play nicely. First it didn't want to stitch at all - the threads were not linking underneath. I moved to a smaller size needle and that seemed to do the trick. BUT... about 2/3 of the way through the buttonhole it suddenly got jammed and wouldn't move. I couldn't finish the buttonhole. I spent an hour trying to figure out exactly what the problem was. The thread keeps getting caught in the race hook and jamming in the bobbin area. In the past my solution has been to take the bobbin casing apart, clean it really well, get a new needle, maybe adjust the bobbin tension, put it all back together, stitch a bit on a scrap of fabric until it runs smoothly again. After an hour I looked at the time and decided that Maeve was going to have to wear something different to school because I couldn't stay up any longer.
Needless to say, she was mightily upset this morning but she managed to keep it together long enough to listen to why the jeans weren't finished. She even asked to look at them and when she saw the almost-finished buttonhole she gave me a hug and said that it was okay, I could finish them later. Today I didn't have time to get to the machine but I'm hoping that LIttle Man will nap tomorrow afternoon so that I can figure out the machine. If I can't make it work I'll break out the Singer Featherweight so I can hem the jeans and do the stupid buttonhole by hand. I don't like to do them by hand but I will if I have to. And on Monday the machine is going to the repair man for a tune-up. In fact, I'm going to check all of my machines this weekend so that I can get them all tuned-up and ready for the sewing badge we're doing for Girl Scouts.