Monday, April 11, 2011

Novice Sewer Vent: Tools

This photo is about as clear as I am about my sewing machine

I know that this really is a personal issue. I could fix this on my own and just not complain about it, but I started this "series" of vents to share my frustration with my own personal cluelessness.

My hand-me-down
so simple!

If there's one thing that I am constantly reminded of as I sew and start new projects, it's that I really don't know how to use my sewing machine(s) effectively. I have two sewing machines at my house, one that my mom has lent me, and one that I got as a hand-me-down from someone moving. The hand-me-down used to be part of a sewing table, so it has a wobbly base, designed to be inset into a table top, and it's at least from the 80's. Neither came with a manual. (To be fair, my mom's machine came with a short description on how to thread the thing, which made the world of difference when I finally read it. But nothing else.) So, I'm sewing along without a clue, like a monkey at a typewriter hoping to write Shakespeare.

the blasted button hole "solution"
So, as humans are apt to do, when I try to do things a certain way and fail, I blame the tool instead of myself. I borrowed my mom's machine because I just couldn't figure out how to do buttonholes on my older machine. Hers had a fancy-schmancy button hole making option on it. I thought that my sewing machine was just lame. Instead of confirming my "lame machine" hypothesis, after I tried to use her machine to make button holes, and after I reviewed various tutorials on the subject, I had to admit that it's not my machine. It's me. And it's still me, because I can't figure out how to make either machine do button holes well. I have come up with a modest "cheat code" of sorts with my mom's machine, so I now at least make reasonable representations of button holes. But it's still a sad substitute. And folks, buttonholes are pretty easy in concept.

I could always get a new fangled sewing machine, because at least it'd come with a manual. It may even have the twenty some stitch options displayed in shiny sophistication. But I'd rather not. I would like this hobby to grow in a sustainable and responsible way. Buying new machines because the older ones are confusing feels too... consumerist?

Even with the sparse pickings compared to fancier models, I still don't know what all of these options mean.
So, I guess I should just order the manuals, huh?

1 comment:

  1. I am hopeless without the manual or youtube. good luck!