February 15, 2013 - 7:22 pm

Well, Yeah, But …

I keep seeing a meme popping up on Facebook that says, “Any day spent sewing, is a good day.” And it’s always in a cute picture that looks like someone took the time to embroider little spools of thread, a pincushion holding straight pins, a pair of scissors and a tape measure has been added that loops around and frames the picture.  Like I said, it’s really cute.

But while the first thought that pops into my head when I see that is, “Hmmm, that’s cute,” the ones that immediately follow are, “Really? No, seriously, really?” and “Every time you’ve sat at your sewing machine, you’ve had an excellent day?”

02_15_jack the ripperThere is no question that I love to sew. However, not every day turns out to be a good day. There are always those annoying little issues that pop up. I don’t think I am the only person who runs into them, either.

Think about it. Surely I’m not the only person who has issues at times. It wasn’t too long ago that I was making quilts for my grandkids for Christmas. I was at my sewing machine, sewing like there was no tomorrow. I had just finished using my quarter-inch foot and set my sewing machine up for a satin stitch. I pressed on the foot feed and cringed when I heard metal hitting metal. You guessed it: I had not changed the foot on my machine, and I broke my needle.

It was also my last needle. I would have sworn that I had dozens of packets stashed away. I should have had some in my sewing case. I thought I had some on the shelf by my sewing machine or at least a packet or two in the drawer of my sewing cabinet. But no, I was out. And the weird thing about that is that I could not convince myself that I was really out. Surely if I kept looking, I would find a packet. I didn’t mind looking in the same spots, either. I blew more than an hour before I gave up and decided I would need to go shopping for needles.

While the day started out auspiciously enough, it wasn’t what I would call a good day, even though I had spent it sewing. It just ended up being aggravating.

Then there are the days I’ve spent making half-square triangles using either Triangles on a Roll or Thangles, both wonderful products. When I use products such as those, you can bet the farm that I am making a lot of half-square triangles, like hundreds and hundreds of them. I sometimes forget to shorten my stitch length or don’t shorten it enough and, when I start cutting them apart, my seam starts to separate. And I get to re-stitch those babies again, this time as single little units. Never a good day when that happens!

I’m always so grateful to get to the point where I am adding the borders to my quilt.  It means I’m nearing the end of my project, and there is little left to do but sew long, straight seams. Much of the time, I don’t even have any points to worry about matching. I pin a border in place and sew, being ever mindful of my quarter-inch seam allowance.  I pull my pins as I go to avoid running over them and breaking my needle. It is only when I take it out from under the presser foot that I realize I have run out of bobbin thread. And I didn’t run out close to the end of the seam, either. It was shortly after I began sewing that long, long length. Not fun, not fun at all!

Most of the time, I can chalk up a bad day of sewing to my own carelessness. But sometimes it will be caused by someone else’s bad math and directions. Oddly enough, when I run into that type of situation, I always blame myself. I must be doing something wrong. Perhaps I didn’t cut piece A correctly, and that’s why it won’t match up to piece B. I will check and recheck my seam allowances and measure and re-measure the pieces I’ve cut. Then I start checking the pattern only to discover that the pattern maker could have put some, OK a lot, of effort into proofing her or his instructions.

That meme is making me feel more than just a little insecure, especially when I see how many “likes” it garners. Does that mean02_15_bobbin thread that others always have a good day when they spend it sewing?

I think I need to come up with my own meme. Maybe it should have a picture of two women gossiping and have a caption that says, “You know she ran out of bobbin thread again!” Or I could draw a face on my seam ripper and caption it, “One of my best friends, Jack the Ripper.”

Whoa, I may be onto something here!

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