Wednesday, February 13, 2013

 Just got finished making my 19th quilt, a commissioned t-shirt quilt. Learned some new techniques on this one - crazy piecing on a freezer paper foundation - which turned out to be easier than I thought. Of course, you have to rip all the paper off after you complete the top so I indulged in a little sloppiness. The luxuries of having a studio space!

 I also indulged in a big purchase for the studio - a brand new (to me) industrial single needle sewing machine! This is the first (and hopefully last) time I've ever bought a machine for myself. The one I've been using my whole life is a Viking Husqvarna domestic machine that I took from my mother. I started on that in middle school, took it with me to fashion college, and has traveled with me ever since. And I'll tell you WHAT, I love that machine but it is NOTHING compared to working on an industrial machine. I've had the chance to sit and use dozens of domestic machines, all different brands and price points, and have been contemplating for years about what machine to buy for myself. If you are a consistent sewer - as in, you're on a machine at least once a week - there is no time in the world to waste on a domestic machine! I can't believe I spent so long on one myself. And the thought repeats in my head now every time I get on my new Brother machine. The way machines are made today are CRAP and all they lead to is broken plastic parts and disinterest in the art of sewing. Yes, they are light and portable and cheap(er) but these are also the reasons that they are CRAP. There are a handful of styles that I would recommend if a domestic machine is your only option, and anyone who is interested in advice on this subject is welcome to contact me. I've certainly got an opinion about this!!

Just in the past 2 weeks, I have been blown away with how much faster I've been getting my work done on this new machine! That's a great feeling.

My second new purchase for the studio is an industrial Yamata safety stitch machine, i.e, a serger or overlock. (Also check out that Wolf dress form I found on the cheap!) Just about anything you want to sew, in regards to clothing, can be made with a serger and single needle. I never thought this would be something I could afford but I found this beauty at a liquidator warehouse that specializes in liquidating assets from textile and apparel manufacturers in NC. 

Unfortunately, North Carolina has been one of the hardest states hit in terms of jobs lost and plants closing in the last 50 years, in the textile and apparel industries, losing 7,000 jobs in 2006 alone*. That means 7,000 empty sewing machines, sitting in warehouses like T & T. Honestly, this machine was a fraction of the price of a new domestic serger and it won't have the same dumb issues. On the other hand, this machine was meant to be sewn on all day, everyday, so it is important to run it regularly. It's great for taking in T-shirts that are too big, I'm already in love with it!

*More info here

 There's my crazy piecing in the background, I'll post soon on the results!

No comments:

Post a Comment