Monday, June 28, 2010

White 793

Here is the White 793.  Don’t you just love it?  By the way, it isn’t just pretty.  It sews, too!  It came with lots of goodies:
Now, I can tell you that it is not in the same league as the Bernina, but it is still worth having.
I have only had a chance to test out the stitches on a few scraps so far.  This sampler was underneath the presser foot when I bought it:
This brand of sewing machine is new to me - I have never sewn on a White before.  Nor have I had a chance to find out much about this brand/model online.
Clash….what happened?  The tops have been cut out and I intended to work on them today.  I opted instead to spend some of my afternoon at the spa for a mani/pedi.  Frankly, it was a good choice.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

A Problem?

"Hello, my name is Tammy and I am a compulsive purchaser of old sewing machines."

It is true.  I leave for a week and following me home, scheduled to arrive tomorrow, is a 1972 turquoise White 793 sewing machine.  I have nothing to say in my defense.  Nothing.

The goal of my trip was to visit my family in the Midwest and I had a wonderful time.  Other than my family, about the only things I saw for miles and miles were knee high corn, white potato blossoms, red barns, and farmhouses.  So, how could this have happened?  It was the result of an innocent visit to a local antique store.  The store consisted of three stories of the usual randomness including old books, dishes, framed art, appliances, furniture, toys, etc.  The offerings continued outdoors in several outbuildings.  The outside stuff was mostly manly things like antique tools, motors and fishing/hunting items.  There was also some heavy furniture.

I had resisted the twenty or so rusty black sewing machines found on the second floor and was proud of myself, as a few of them had caught my eye.  The White 793, though, was tricky.  It was waiting for me, snug in its carrying case perched atop a painted dresser, in one of those outbuildings.  When I opened the case and saw bright turquoise paint and shiny silver trim, I knew it was coming home with me.  Twenty-five dollars later and it was mine.

My father oiled it and got it going.  It works!  I will post a photo once it arrives.

Thank you DD#2 for keeping this blog alive in my absence.  Please feel free to jump in anytime and illuminate us with your wisdom and insight.  Bring your wounded pants with you on your next visit and I will assist you in their repair.

My next post should (hopefully) conclude the Clash of the Sunshine and the Butterick tops.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Back to the Show!

Dear Tammy's readers,

It looks like I'm actually going to have to sew something.  I washed my one pair of work pants, and the hem fell out.  Here are my options:

1) get my mom to sew it back (which takes convincing and shipping)
2) wear them as-is (tempting, yet asymmetrical)
3) repair the hem myself (yeah, right)
4) buy new pants

I've already tried Option 4.  Too bad dress pants cost $50-$70 per pair.  Next step:  #3.  Maybe.  I might just wear skirts instead.  Who cares.  Do any of you want to sew my pants?

Tomorrow Tammy will be home, and she will once again take the reigns of this glorious blog.  While you've gotten to know me, well, pretty much not at all over the past few days, I feel like you and I have the kind of bond that just doesn't quit.  Like Fixodent or something.

By the way, to all of you who just read that, gave a big sarcastic "HAEH" and cried a little inside:
1) Nobody's making you read this and 2) That was my reaction, so you stole it from me.  And you owe me $2 in royalties for using my emotion.

Anyways, as I was saying.  I am proud to turn you guys back to Tammy after a few short guest posts. 

And if you're wondering why I'm writing a whole post to say goodbye after neglecting you for a few days, I really am all about putting a grand finale on a five minute play.  You get to skip through all of the boring, plot-building parts and get to the grandiose finish while still making it home in time to watch your stories.  And like I said, I'm all about that.

So I am proud to say that you are safely back in Tammy's hands.  It's been real.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Important Sewing Task

Tammy's readers:

I have a mission for you all.  Go into your kid's/brother's closet today and follow the instructions contained in this informative document.  I am pretty sure that even I could handle the technical skill required to complete this task. 
Oh yeah, and this:  I am not liable for any consequential, incidental, or contingent damages whatsoever that arise as a result of following the preceding recommendation.  So nice try, fool.

PS- my mom will be back in about 4 days.  You only have to put up with me until then.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


You've read about me.  I'm DD #2.  Yes, that is my real name, don't worry about it.

So, I hear that you are now subject to my nonsense-filled ranting (but before you get nervous and stop following this blog, I will tell you that I'm only here as a "substitute" until my mom gets back from vacation).  You should probably know up-front that I don't know much about sewing.  I mean, I have this game for my Wii where you can "sew" a garment to earn fake-money.  You save the money to buy a watch that fends off a meteor/asteroid that is about to destroy the earth.  And let me tell you, I pretty much rock at the beginner level of fake-sewing.

Also, I can sew a straight line like nobody's business, and I even helped my mom with a few of her recent sewing equipment acquisitions.  So yeah, I'm pretty much a pro.

So (sew?) I will get back to you.  I'll do some sewing research in the meantime.  I promise.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Guest Blogger - Oh, the Anticipation!

Yes, it has been too many days since my last posting.  Invariably, each day has come and gone with no sewing, no photos, and no blogging.  The uncomplaining Sunshine muslin is passing the time on the dress form and the Butterick muslin is visiting with the “real” garments in my closet.  I am sad to tell you that this will be the state of my sewing for the next several days.

Dry your eyes.  Really, it will be all right.  World traveling DD#2 will be guest blogging here.  What mysteries will she make clear to us?  What marvels shall she tell of?  I cannot wait for her visit!

May this new week bring beautiful things to you!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Clash IV - Muslins

I sewed up the muslins several days ago and they have been patiently waiting.  Today, I finally claimed a chunk of time and put them on the dress form.

The Sunshine muslin was made from the leftovers of my daughter’s New Look 6179 top.  To make a reasonable pattern comparison, I used an identical fabric (a stretch jersey knit), in a different print, for the Butterick top.

Scraps of heavy weight interfacing were block-fused to the neckband fabrics before cutting.  A soft knit interfacing would have been a better choice but this was a good use of the scraps.
HP Weekender Sunshine Tops

The Sunshine top is too large under the arms (the excess has been pinned) and the hip side seams curve out unnaturally.  The waist is fine.  As I had suspected, something is off with the armscye.  Too high?  I don’t know, but it needs to be dealt with once the side seams have been corrected.  The hem is narrow and would look nicer if it were at least one inch deep.
Butterick 5219

The hem band of the Butterick pattern visually adds width and combined with the short length makes for one unflattering top.  That band will disappear.  The top is too big around.  If you look, you can see the extra pinned on the right.

I experimented with the Bernina stitches while sewing the muslins.  And, for grins, I used leftover bobbin thread.  The bobbin box is now tidy but the muslins have crazy stitches that do not blend into the fabric.

I haven’t found a stretch stitch that I like for topstitching knit hems.  It is a small matter but one that cannot be resolved without ownership of a coverstitch machine.  For now, I need to make friends with a Bernina 930 stretch stitch and get on with it.

Okay, the side seams and length on both patterns require adjusting.  Remember, though, I had added to the side seams so I can’t fault the patterns for that.  The armscye on the Sunshine top is strange and the Butterick top will be losing its hem band.  At this point, they are pretty much even.