Wednesday, May 19, 2010

You May Have Noticed......

.....this "knitting blog" of mine has contained a great deal of sewing recently.  Partly, this is due to the fact that I--in some insane moment of optimism/daringness/inebriation--decided to finish 100 projects within 365 days, and it's much easier to crank out a finished project every 3.65 days when one can throw sewing into the mix.  Don't get me wrong--I love knitting with all the passion that I always have, but unless you usually do even slower hobbies such as cross stitch or painting the Sistine Chapel, knitting is not likely to be one's fastest hobby.

A second reason for my new sewing dedication is that sewing can provide one with clothing.  Not to sneer at sweaters, by any means--I must personally own around 50 by now if not more--but I do firmly believe that knitted pants are wrong for anyone over the age of potty training.  It may be just prejudice on my part, but I do feel quite strongly on this point.

The third reason:  a friend of mine recently decided to take the plunge and upgrade her sewing machine.  For weeks we discussed options, and I raved quite a bit about all the features of my Husqvarna machine and we discussed all the types of things it could do and all the things one can embroider.....and I realized that four years later I still didn't know how to do a whole bunch of the things my machine can do.  I realized I even had presser feet I have never used--a few that I don't even know what one would use them for in all honesty.  But I was enthusiastic about the features (and feet) I could work.  My friend did find a machine--a lovely Husqvarna Topaz--and promptly named it "Betty."

I bought my sewing machine 4 years ago, and I admit, it never even occurred to me to name it.  Probably because I was so intimidated by the thing that the only thing I could have conceivably called it would have been "sir."  After my first attempt at an embroidery project resulted in a tablecloth that actually had to be cut away from the machine, I was even less inclined to call it anything fit for human ears.  But we've had 4 years together now, and I have stopped having to destroy projects to remove them from the embroidery hoops, so I think we're finally ready to be on a first name basis.  Let me introduce you to Jeeves:

If you are not acquainted with the Jeeves stories by P.G. Wodehouse, or the wonderful series with Hugh Laurie and Stephen Fry, I do recommend them.  (But then again, I have just named my sewing machine).  In the stories, Jeeves is the wise one who knows all, and is generally there to keep Bertie Wooster out of trouble--even if it means taking a very firm line with Bertie.  That's about the relationship I have with the sewing machine.  It is computerized, so while it is normally willing to do my bidding, there have been times when it has to take a firm line and just say "no."  Usually when I'm doing something that will result in a broken needle or two.

The serger and I, however, so not have such a close relationship.  I can use it, and as long as I pay attention and do what it says, we work together nicely.  I have decided to call it "Mr. Tibbs."  That sort of sums up our relationship......


Janet said...

Good for you on naming your machines. I always name mine within a couple of weeks of getting them. I am now the proud owner of 3 Janome machines. I love all three! One is specifically for machine quilting, it is a straight stitch only, does 1600 stitches a minute, her name is Nellie. My 2nd machines name is Sophie and she is a DC3050, Janome. Lovely machine with 50 built in stitches. My latest addition to the trio is named Beth, and she is a 9700 embroidery and sewing machine. Love it! I am able to have something to embroider on the one, and piece at the same time with Sophie! Great fun! I am loving all three! Have a good time with Jeeves, the more you work with him, the better you will get at your embroidery!

tinebeest said...

I have never understood the need to name objects. I have a few trustworthy things in my life- a superb bicycle, a few guitars, high quality hifi equipment- and while I may go so far as to talk to them ("Oh come on you stupid **** do as I tell you!" comes to mind), they're not going to get any names. Next thing you know they've started a union and start to terrorise you! :-p

toni in florida said...

The only machine I could see naming (although I have not personally done so) is a, um, personal appliance that I've heard some girls call "Bob," an acronym for "battery-operated boyfriend". But, really, how many conversations about Bob... and with whom? And how many are you going to have with, um, the Bobster itself/himself? And at those times, wouldn't it/he more likely be called "god" or even "oh god"?

But I digress.


As to the title of your blog, well, it is "a little yarn on the side", so perhaps said yarn is "on the side" of your sewing... your quasi-illicit hobby with which to dally on occasion. My, it does make the whole knitting thing sound rather naughty, doesn't it? I'm sure Theo, the sewing master, would agree.

Have fun with your presser feet experiments!

RobinH said...

My two sewing machines are currently so neglected that that I'd have forgotten their names if they had any. Really, I ought to do something about that. (The neglect, not the lack of names...particularly while I'm stuck at 39!)