Monday, July 8, 2013

The Viking on Steroids

I'm headed to Berkeley this morning to deliver a few outfits for the FabricLady, proving you can go fishing for three days, celebrate the Fourth of July and push your sewing machine to the limits. At one point yesterday, I was sure I saw smoking rising from my Viking during a brutal siege with a knit top. I sensed that Colette, my ever present mini-me, was anxious about the welfare of her friend...I am sure I heard her sigh from the next room...

The Viking is a marvelous machine, though I say this knowing that just when you start complimenting something, it promptly goes South on you. At the risk of feeding its ever hungry ego, I love the way she (there are girl Vikings, right?) hums under pressure. Sewing machines these days are indeed complex...not like the old steel Singer with the knee pedal that I learned to sew my 4-H projects. But this complexity is also a blessing in that there are so many adjustment possibilities - a magic combination for every fabric and every project.

I'm pretty "old school" when it comes to sewing, so I forget that my Viking can conquer the sleaziest organza, the toughest denim and the stretchiest knit. In a recent post, Suzan talked about her love of knits, so learning the limits of my sewing machine and serger have been enlightening.

For instance, I probably spent an hour messing with the settings trying to get the right stitch, the right tension, etc. to sew on the lightweight knit shown in Suzan's post. Me and the Viking we truly at odds until out of the blue I think "the Presser Foot, Dummy"! By dialing down on the pressure put on the fabric while it feeds through, I eliminated that nasty bunched up look that I'm pretty sure Suzan might frown on.

There must 800 gazillion stitch settings on my machine and finding the right one for this knit fabric just took time and experimentation. What worked for the heavy ponte knit skirt of last week was not going to work. 

I've made a lot of knit tops so I'm pretty set in my ways.  However, you're never to "old School" to learn a new trick. I got this cool fusible stay tape at the FabricLady's store, StoneMountain. Actually, Suzan handed it to me and said "Here, try this!"  

Easy to apply, easy to use...magic! I do have one aside on this product...Do not drop this little roll - it is not wound very tightly and before you know it, you have 22 yards of tiny little thin tape in a twisted heap on the floor - trying to re-wind it onto the roll? NOT! But I digress - on this knit, I serged the tape on to the wrong side. You can also just iron it on...


Flip that puppy over, iron it (it's fusible!) and sew the hem like normal. It gives the hemline a little more stability yet maintains the stretch of the knit. Love it!!

Such cute little glass buttons...

Such a cute little top!

Chalk off another victory for the Viking.  I think I wore her out yesterday sewing things for the FabricLady, all the while, listening to Colette sigh from the other room.  I guess I better make something for her this week before she becomes violent and tries to choke the Viking...

Laurel. Sew nice.

1 comment:

  1. As far as I'm concerned, what you accomplish with a sewing machine is a miracle!


Thanks for visiting my blog. I appreciate all those who share and leave their comments very much. Laurel

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