Saturday, October 18, 2008

Progress - Maybe

So Theo and I have been working on the checkerboard baby blanket
and using a joining foot and a zig zag, I sewed 6 strips of blocks together. As rectangular didn't require cutting more blocks and square did, we opted for the rectangular blanket.
The problems started when I started trying to sew the strips together. If you haven't worked with fleece before, it doesn't stretch at all in one direction, and stretches like a maniac in the other. After several attempts using various setting on my sewing machine--not to mention lots of "quality time" with the seam ripper--I used my quilt basting spray to stick little bits of water soluble stabilizer to hold the blocks together, and zigzagged them together:

It's still a bit puckered, but not nearly as bad as it was. The biggest problem is that there is no way to spray little strips of stabilizer with basting spray without getting basting spray all over one's hands. You can blame any typos on the fact that my fingers keep sticking to the keyboard. And for future reference, soap and water, rubbing alcohol, Clorex wipes, and industrial hand cleaner all fail to remove basting spray from skin.

If I had it to do over, I'd use the two-thread flatlock on the serger to put the blocks together. That is, if I knew how to do a two-thread flatlock on the serger. Blame Nancy Zeiman and her videos for this little endeavor. Trust me, it looked really, really easy when she did it. She has been taken off my Christmas card list for this little episode in my life.

My next attempt is going to be using a stabilizer that gets sticky with water--and I think ultimately disolves. I've been "organizing" the sewing room, so when I find it I'll let you know. Theo wants no part of cleaning or organizing, so Calisto is helping me.
As you can see, it's tough work.

The most positive part of this whole fleece's a relief to go back to sewing seams on Fleur! Look for progress pictures tomorrow!