Sunday, February 7, 2010

And the Last Shall Be First

Welcome all to my blog. I’ve actually wanted to start this blog for over a month but I’ve gotten sidetracked by one disaster or another – including two of my three sewing machines konking out on me. But here I am! I’ve been reading so many awesome blogs by sewists, crafters, do-it-herselfers and other very creative women. They’ve given me so many great ideas and (I like to think) I have great ideas of my own so here I am.

Plus I have so many people that know I sew but, as my friend Catherine often says, “I never SEE what you’re working on”. So I hope this blog is a good way to show everyone my projects. I hope you enjoy it. It’ll get prettier as time goes on. I look forward to your comments and suggestions!

This blog would have been started shortly after the New Year. But my main sewing machine, a 1970’s Kenmore, started to die off. It would zip along just fine and then….nothing. The motor would be running but the take up lever wouldn’t go.

So fine, I moved on to my second best machine. It’s a practically new 2007 Singer. I bought it because the Kenmore doesn’t do zippers or knit fabrics well. The Singer does ‘em beautifully – but the tension is ALWAYS messed up and the presser feet are impossible to change. (I broke a nail switching them once). Which means zippers are a no-go and, with the tension issues, so is any kind of detailed sewing. Which left me with the 2005 Kenmore I got from my Grandmother when she passed. It’s one of those cracker-jack prize machines that come from local Sprawl*Mart. It moves at the speed of mud and all the presser feet were missing. Pathetic.

So I took my main machine to the repair shop. For $115 they could fix it for me. “But at this point”, the guy tells me, “you might as well get a new one.” Well, coming off of Christmas, I really didn’t want to drop $115 on repairs and I certainly didn’t want to drop $250 or more on a new one. I’ll just chug along with Gramma’s cracker jack prize machine and make do.

But then I got asked out on a date.

And I had NOTHING to wear.

But thankfully I’m a seamstress. “I’ll just make something”, I thought. But how do you make something fabulous to impress a new date when you have one machine that is no good for zippers and detailed stitching and another machine that is so slow that you just won’t have time for properly finished seams or the ability to handle harder to work with fabrics?

Thus began my first sewing challenge of 2010. This is what I came up with:

I used New Look 6204(A) to make a knit pull-over top. It features a simple casing down the front to create the rouched look. The skirt is McCalls 4245(A) which has an elastic waist and is casual enough to get away with a rolled, machine-stitched hem. Made the whole outfit THE DAY OF my date in about 6 hours. Whew!

It wasn’t as fancy as I could’ve gotten with my best machine. After this, I decided to spring for a new machine. Ironic that the last project on my crummy machines is now the first one I'm featuring on this blog.

And apparently I pulled it off. I got asked out again.


  1. Wow Twill Jill! You sound like an amazing woman! Many women think they are into fashion, but she who sews is the true fashionista! A real original! You go girl! I am excited to see more!

  2. Oooh, also, I wanted to say I love the top you are wearing in the profile picture! Did you make that too? I love the little bow detail on the collar.

  3. Wow you made the whole outfit on the day of your date on a not so great machine. I'm impressed.

  4. Wow, I hope one day I can sew like that! Thanks for stopping by my blog, and I hope to see more of you in weeks to come!