Sew This & That

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Marion Mulligan and Rita Yates

We have many stories this month but this first one easily bites the metal, literally!

As you know, sewing can be sometimes crazy with lots of fun or just a pain in the butt, But what if we told you we had to revert to using a pair of our husbands ‘tin snips?’ If you don’t know what ‘tin snips’ are, they are used by husbands to cut something like tin or lead. 

They look like the picture here and are positively huge. See the normal size too?  No human hand can navigate these colossal scissors. It takes great energy and two hands to use tin snips. 

Anyway, we are here to tell you they work just fine in cutting metallic fabric.  Yes, metallic fabric with many, many sequins, angry little pesky things and the tin snips came through with flying colors and saved the day.  The item in question was an exquisite gown, weighing in at 15 pounds, loaded with metallic sequins and beads with the hem too long. With the tin snips, a smooth cut was made  four inches off the hem all around.  Sewing up the metallic hem on a machine proved another slight problem but we know how.  Just take a large machine sewing needle specially for knit fabrics and adjust the tension and stitch length and you are ready to sew.  You know, husbands’ tool benches are quite an adventure—this could be another story—there are leftover loose tea leaf cans pilled high, funny bits of smelly rags, plastic bags, odd screws waiting for a home to go to, many pieces of string and wire.  The list goes on.  But thankfully some husbands do come in handy just at the right time, so bless their little cotton socks!
Now our Tip of the Month:  Just to tell you to relax and enjoy sewing as a way to create something beautiful and useful.  And if you mess it up, rip it out and try again. Just enjoy the ride.

May we remind you that if there is a need for a “Prayer Blanket” for anyone who has returned from hospital, maybe a shut in, or a child, whoever, just call 336-0807 for a blanket that is free of charge. It may take a week or so to deliver. They are made by volunteers who care and give their time to sew washable lap blankets for those in need.  A few months ago we asked for donated material and have since made almost 100 blankets.  Two blankets have travelled to England and two have been shipped to Canada and Arizona.  Please feel free to call and request a blanket for your loved one.

Here is our Gadget of the Month:  These are little rubber finger covers.  You will find them in the pharmacy section.  Little wonders, these gadgets are called first-aid cots and will protect your finger tips from anything.   We use them to grip slippery items, protect sore fingertips and hand-sew delicate stitches to flimsy fabrics.  The economy pack contains 36 cots in small, medium and large.

It has also been a busy month for theater costumes and we have discovered that theatre garments need to be easy to get into and out of.  So when adapting for different actors and /or shows the hems and seams need to be much wider and deeper to accommodate different sizes.  This is an area where finishing off inside seams and fittings really doesn’t matter as much.

The next adult sewing workshop will be on Wednesday, May 14 from 10 a.m. to noon at the Washington County Extension Office. Just bring your alterations, thoughts and ideas. We are here to help. Hugs from This & That.