Sew…

I have been known to attach pieces of fabric via needle and thread. Sometimes, the result is even publicly presentable- see my horse’s Halloween costume in the top image.

But I have a nasty habit of biting off way more than I can chew. Or sew. No one in the audience knows what that is like, right?

(Let’s take a moment to appreciate the vagaries of the English language, that make ‘chew’ and ‘sew’ non-rhyming even when they clearly should).

But anyway. I like lightweight, floaty fabrics, but I always forget that they’re a pain to work with. I need a face covering that I can wear for a few hours at a time, and I figured an ersatz arabesque veil would work reasonably well. And it may, if I can manage to hem it without the material puckering all over the place. Cutting it was already an adventure; the fabric has enough stretch that it’s essentially impossible to cut it in straight lines, even with my trusty quilting ruler and rotary cutter. Stitching it on a machine, with a normal hem… well, it has a hem, technically, but it looks nothing like what I’d pictured in my head.

But I have options. I can stitch a ribbon over the hem, to disguise the lumps. Alas that I don’t have matching ribbon that’s wide enough; it’d have to be black or a flowered (the veil itself is dark green). Or I could handstitch a new hem, possibly rolled instead of folded. That will require a possibly insane amount of time and pins, and while I probably have enough pins, the time I can devote to this is somewhat limited.

Once upon a time, my aunt taught me to sew. I’m still not sure why my mom didn’t- she had mad skills, including making a lot of my clothes when I was a kid and all kinds of costumes for various school functions. But my aunt ended up taking on the task, and I learned some good basic skills from her, mostly quilting related. So I tend to take those basic skills and jump right into complicated projects that require advanced skills. Then there’s much swearing and cursing and restraining myself from hitting things when I realize that I’m stuck. And of course, there’s usually a time crunch involved, to heighten the drama. Eventually, I figure out a solution, which may bear little resemblance to the original plan. But if I’ve learned one useful thing over the years, it’s that most people don’t know what your original plan looked like, and if you don’t tell them you made a mistake or changed the plan, they’ll never notice.

Good advice for many aspects of life.

5 comments

  1. Have you thought of bias tape? You can even make your own if you have a fat quarter of matching fabric. Alternately, a rolled hem foot for your sewing machine. That and the vocabulary I learned at my father’s knee (he was a sailor) has gotten me through many a floaty skirt for the frequently-over-dressed Dragonette.

  2. Does the fabric absolutely require hemming? That is, can you pink it? If you’re only wearing it a short time and only once, it may not be worth the effort of hand-sewing a rolled hem (the only way to handle that kind of lightweight floaty fabric, tedious as the job is).

    1. Fun fact!

      If you plop “pinks” into a search engine and look at the images, the first ones are likely to be the flowers. Notice how the edge is “pinked” — that’s how the flowers got the name.

      And that’s how the color got its name, from the flower.

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