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Messages - Mick

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Sewing Spaces and Furniture / Re: At last!
« on: April 06, 2020, 19:33:05 PM »
OK, how about now?

See anything?


Sewing Spaces and Furniture / At last!
« on: April 05, 2020, 22:01:26 PM »
It was last November that my son and his OH decided to move into a place of their own, leaving our attic bedroom, where they had been living, spare.

So the plan was, a quick coat of paint, a bed settee for visitors, and a little sewing corner for Mick to call his own.
Easy job, be done in no time.

Six months later it's almost finished.   :[

It may be small, minimal even, but it's mine...

Sewing_1 by Mick, on Flickr

Sewing_2 by Mick, on Flickr

Hand Sewn / Re: Hand sewing needles recommendation please
« on: February 21, 2020, 21:23:49 PM »
Going to confess here that when I first started sewing (not that long ago), I bought a huge pack of "budget" needles, with every size you can imagine in it, from tiny up to some that you could use to harpoon a whale.
Cost about a quid or so for the whole lot, from Lidl or Netto, or somewhere.

Not knowing any better, I'd managed with them ever since.

But then, after reading this thread, I did wonder about trying some quality.
So, following the recommendations here,  sent for a small spectrum of "sharps" from John James.
Needles by Mick, on Flickr

For something that's basically just a sharpened bit of metal, the difference is really quite surprising.
Still trying to work out which size is actually best for which job, but can honestly say that hand sewing is now a pleasure instead of a chore.

So thank you ladies for the good advice.  :loveit:

Access All Accessories / Re: Simple man sewing.
« on: January 07, 2020, 21:54:24 PM »
Great idea Mick, not that I'd let him loose on my machines but I showed it to my DH and have spent the following 10mins listening to him trying to tell me what it is before I could shut him up and explain I knew and that a bloke made it  :S

Mansplaining is a real thing.

Not that I would ever dare do it.

Not around here, anyway...

Access All Accessories / Re: Simple man sewing.
« on: January 07, 2020, 21:38:14 PM »
It's great but just one criticism observation - on your next project, try to incorporate the eyelets in your fastening method  :P

Stop giving me ideas. I can get into enough trouble on my own.

I didn't need another spanner roll. But now I do need one with the eyelets in it.

Really... ><


Access All Accessories / Re: Simple man sewing.
« on: December 22, 2019, 21:53:26 PM »
Before you know it, you will be moving on to zipper pouches to hold that ever growing set of Allen keys. Then double zipper, then triple zipper...

It's a worrying possibility.
There's yards of that old canvas left.  :fabric:   -<

Access All Accessories / Re: Simple man sewing.
« on: December 20, 2019, 07:42:19 AM »
Very nice! Are you organised enough to put each one back in it's place as soon as you've finished with it?

Like most people in my trade, I buy my own hand tools. Those spanners have cost me money.

They're going back in the damn roll. Every time.

Access All Accessories / Simple man sewing.
« on: December 19, 2019, 21:41:39 PM »
For a simple man, sewing!

My job takes me all over the fairly big factory where I work, and wherever I go, my tools have to go with me.
Well I finally got fed up of rummaging in the bottom of the toolbox for the right size spanner, and decided a little organization was called for.

This heavy-duty canvas is the remains of an old welding screen. It's old, frayed and a bit manky.
So I know just how it feels...

Something like this? Precision guesswork at it's finest.

Strong thread, a Jeans needle in the machine, and away we go.

No more swearing and chucking stuff about because I can't find the right tool.

Sewalongs and Competitions / Re: We have a winner...
« on: October 18, 2019, 21:59:33 PM »
It arrived a couple of hours ago, via a neighbor from a few doors down the road.

The Post Office use our street as part of their "training route", and apparently trainee post people can't read house numbers properly.

We get quite a lot of other people's mail, and rely on other people to bring ours around when they can be bothered.

Anyway, it's here now, and a source of some considerable pride... ;)


Sewalongs and Competitions / Re: We have a winner...
« on: October 14, 2019, 21:02:46 PM »
Thank you all very, very much.

As a very inexperienced sewer, on a forum full of people who can actually sew, no one is more surprised about this than me.

I shall wear the badge with pride... :)

Mick's entry for the competition.

OK, a bit late to the party here, but I started a completely different project for the competition, and that went very, very wrong. My fault for choosing a raw material that was just too difficult for someone of my modest ability to work with.
So this was a bit of a last minute rush.

Raw material
DW gets these smocks issued by the place where she works.
She gets a new one every year, and they don't want the old ones back.

The project.
I've had this hat for ages. It's comfy and fits well, but it's falling to pieces.

Made the hat into a hat pattern.

And used the hat pattern to make a hat.
Sounds easy when you say it quickly...

I re-used the plastic peak stiffener, and the velcro strips from the original hat. The inner band came from the bits-and-bobs-box.
Bought the coverable button for the top, and the patch came free with a Bike magazine, some time in the 1980's. It's been on at least one denim jacket and a couple of pairs of jeans since, but is still in good nick, considering.

Access All Accessories / Re: Transformation Challenge
« on: April 06, 2019, 22:45:33 PM »
Thanks for the encouraging words, everyone.  0_0

Love the pockets in the cover. That’s a great idea.

Here’s mine. I just pop it on the machine when I’ve finished sewing. 
I used some left over fabric that I’d used to make shopping bags for my DIL’s.

  [ You are not allowed to view attachments ]

That is some pretty cool fabric.

The problem for me is that I don't have anywhere to leave my machine set up. I need to pack stuff away when I've finished using it. So the pockets are a real help in that respect.

Access All Accessories / Transformation Challenge
« on: April 04, 2019, 21:56:05 PM »
Sorry, was channeling a bit of a GBSB moment with that title... 8)

Anyway, back to reality.

When finally forced to admit that this sewing thing was not just a passing fancy, I thought I'd better get a slightly more "user friendly" sewing machine than the hand-cranked antique I had been using.
Ended up with a Singer HD 4423, which seems like a fine thing. Does everything I ask of it with no fuss.

However, for a machine that prides itself on being strong and well built, the cover that comes with it is frankly a bit of a surprise. Apparently made of J-cloth it looks like it should last for about 10 minutes.

So this seemed like the perfect time to steepen my own learning curve a little, by designing and making something from scratch.
This is how it turned out.
Has a cut out in the top for the handle, and pockets on the front for the mains lead and foot pedal.
Hardly the most technical of projects, but as I say, having never done anything like this before, I'm just surprised it actually fits the machine properly.

And the GBSB reference?
Well the outer is made from discarded restaurant napkins, the lining is from old pot-towels, and the pocket linings are industrial roller towel.
Cheapskate, me?
No, I prefer to think of it as "environmentally friendly". :D

Access All Accessories / Re: Momento Mori
« on: March 05, 2019, 10:24:40 AM »
@Mick I hope you've saved other bits of the jacket for your next project...........

Yes I did.
So does that mean I'm in danger of developing (whisper it quietly) a...fabric stash?  :o

Access All Accessories / Momento Mori
« on: March 04, 2019, 22:14:09 PM »

As I said in the Hi I'm New section, I am pretty much an absolute beginner at this sewing thing, so trying to get some simple projects done, just to find my feet.

So here goes...

I bought this jacket in the late 1970's, when I got my first motorbike, and was still using it until recently.
It's seen a lot of hard road miles, and more than a few adventures.
But to be honest it's had it's day. The leather is brittle and perishing in places, the pocket linings are long gone and many of the zips don't work anymore.

Still, it seemed a shame to just bin it, after all this time together.

So I downloaded the simplest wallet pattern I could find, salvaged the best bits of the leather, a bit of the quilted liner, and set about it.

It's far from perfect, the stitching is a bit wobbly in places, and some of the cutting could have been neater.
But it works, and it's the first faltering step along the road to getting better at this stuff.

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