Friday, 2 March 2018

Power cords - Tripping hazards

I am involved with a goup of quilters as a mentor over a 28 week period and we start up again this week.  You can imagine 21 quilters with 21 machines - power cables/cords everywhere.

In the past to prevent anyone from tripping over these cables we have used tape to tape down the cables onto the carpet.  Needless to say when the tape is lifted it leaves a very sticky residue on the cable and on hands.

Andrea (member of this group) suggested we use velcro fabric strips.  She had seen this techqniue on a training course.  So we are going to give this a go.

This morning I removed all the sticky residue from our cables and multi boxes using DeSolvit.  Its a great product but always do a test first because it can eat through laytex etc.  I use this product to gently remove the sticky residue left on my spool from the stickers on machine sewing threads.  Its orange based so if you are allegic to citrus please do not use this product.


Two hours of wiping and these look new.

Our new cable trip protectors.  Nice and bright so they can be seen when in action.  The cable can still move within its casing i.e. adjusted if required.


Hook velcro underneath


Cut 18 cm (7") with strip full width of the fabric (150cm in this case).  If your fabric needs to be longer, sew two pieces together before commencing next step.

Fold fabric in half and sew down the side seam all the way down the length of your fabric.  I found my overlocker quick for this job.

Turn your tube inside out.  Make sure your seam is in the center.  This will be the bottom of your strip.  Turn in the ends and stitch closed.
Sew hook velcro down both sides full length of your strip.  Once finished, cover the hook with loop velcro to prevent the hook attaching itself to your clothing when not in use.
I used 16mm wide hook and loop velcro.

We will test these next week and we can be cut down to size really easily if required.

Happy stitching
Shirls


Sunday, 11 February 2018

Two New classes

I have scehduled new two classes.

The first is called Zipper Art.   It is 2 two hour sessions Thursday evenings July 12 & 19 and will be held at Wellington Sewing Centre.  In this class you will be shown how to manipulate pieces of zip into different shapes to create your own zipper art piece.
Its all hand work, exercise pieces of zips will be included in the class cost and all you need to bring is a couple of good needles and your smile.


The second class is the "Weekender Bag".  Its soft, so can be easily rolled up to put away when not in use but it is big and will hold lots.  It should fit the "carry on Luggage" requirements but will confirm that later.
The pattern has now been drafted and tested.  I will be making a class sample over the next couple of weeks.  It is currently scheduled over two thursday evenings 26 June and 3rd of July.  It may run over onto a third week or home work will be expected.


Contact jo@sewingdirect.co.nz to book.  Will post the bag sample ASAP :)
Happy crafting.
Shirls


Monday, 22 January 2018

The art of Patience.

We all have UFOs of some sort be it, knitting, quilts etc.  They are usually put aside because we loose our enthusiasm for it, hasn't worked out, needs unpicking,  you are stuck in a rut or you just dont like it.  I noticed recently when I tidied up my sewing room, that I had many project bags and shoe boxes full of unfinished projects. Most have now been given away to groups who make charity items for others.  Yes I know thats cheating but it lessens my guilt and creates more space for new projects!

May last year I said yes to making a large wall hanging for a small community. The challenge began with the initial diagram given to me.

Level One of City and Guilds - you are taught to plan a piece, from drawing, measuring to collecting fabric swatches etc.  The thing about plans - they usually get thrown out of the window!!  Every step I made, something would go wrong or just didn't work.  For example I couldn't use batting - it made the selected background fabric look like a block of chocolate - not like a piece of metal.  Then there was our cat who sprayed in my sewing table and managed to get some on this quilt!! Yes he's still alive.

Incidentaly I mixed water and vinegar and wiped down the whole quilt so as it dried there was no water marks.  I got the stain out, there was still a some spray smell.  I have now lightly wiped the backing fabric of the area concerned with eucalyptus oil.

Im glad to say I am nearly finished however this has really tested my patience and I have learnt that I have buckets of patience.  Just as well!!!!  The added challenge was not giving up as this couldn't be put into a project bag and stashed in my UFO pile.  It has to get finished.

I stitched the metallic background and placed silk pieces (A4 size).  I visited every store in the Wellington Region looking for the right shade of braid.  In the end I had to stitch and make a braid using two types to give the right metalic effect I needed (see previous post).

With the delicate fabrics and the height of the braid I had no choice but to spend hours upon hours hand stitching the braid in place draining every inch of patience out of my body LOL.  Especially in some cases redoing letters that were not sitting correctly.  I don't enjoy hand stitching and so gave  myself deadlines each week to get it all stitched.  Some days I would start at 4 or 5 am to beat the heat of the day (its currently our summer here in New Zealand).

I won't be able to show you the whole work (its not finished anyway).  Its very metallic so the shine of the threads don't come through in these photos.



I plan to have this quilt completed by the end of January.  Looking forward to the prospect of starting my next creative project which is busting to get out of my brain.

Incidently - I have another small problem.  The thread I was using required a top stitch needle to prevent the thread from breaking so when I hold the quilt up to the light you see all the needle holes.  I have an I an idea on how I will fix this - will let you know in my next post.

Happy stitching.
Shirls