My Sewing life: Inside the machine


I have been sewing for thirty years now, so for most a lifetime.  When I was younger all of my machines were used.  Professional service was a luxury, so I would take the machine apart and do my best.  And it worked.


A few years back my Husqvarna Emerald Sewing machine blew a fuse, it wasn’t under warranty, so to replace the 3$ fuse cost me $89& taxes. Not cheap.  So, when the fuse went a few months later I took the machine apart, replaced the fuses and repositioned the wires to make then next fuse replacement a snap.  The whole machine had to come apart to get access.  Well, in doing so, I flipped some wires in replacing the fuses.  The consequence was that they light on the machine would only work when the pedal was in use.  A nuisance but not broken.

So, I recently listed the machine on crags list and the one offer was incredibly low.  So, last night I took it apart to fix the issue.

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Now if I had looked at the bottom once the plate was off I should have notice that the fuses were yellow wire to white wire, but I didn’t.  I was thinking that I had put the wrong wires to the machines computer board.  So, I unscrewed all kinds of screw, coaxed the plastic bits apart and swapped the wires.   Then I put it back enough to test, and the machine said no, they were fine the way they were before.  I then went looking to see what was amiss and that was the moment that I realized I didn’t need to pull it all apart.

The picture below shows the correct fuse wiring.  While I was in the machine, I cleaned and lubricated all the gears and moving parts.  Now it should sell for closer to the asking price.


I just want to emphasize that this was only done on machines that were beyond the manufactures warranty.  Never touch a machine under warranty – it will void it.



Sewing with Hemp linen. A quick finish to the sleeve.

Hemp Linen (40% Hemp/60% Organic Cotton) is a joy to work with.  The more that it is worked, the softer it becomes.DSC02057

I have worked with this before with great success.  The lace is a cotton 1” that I picked up years ago.  When folded and sewn over the materials edge the finish is clean and wears really well.  DSC02060

One of the property’s of hemp woven material is that the hemp will have a tendency to bind to itself naturally during wear.  So it will not come apart under the lace. 

I will be using this technique on the neck for this hemp shirt. 


2015–the backside of another year– Time to look forward too

It was a good year overall.  Not enough sewing projects were completed but I still have not given up on them.  I guess it is to be expected having a full time job and an almost full time self employed business and family to help keep it all together.

DSC07789Not enough posts either. Perhaps I will get to more of these in the new year.

There is the Mona Lisa – my red. So named  because I have been working on it for over a year.  It will look good and fit like a glove but as of yet I have no where to ware it.  So I will be patient. DSC07773

There is the almost finished kimono that I have started for my partner – mostly finished so perhaps this weekend.  Both the Kimono and the Mona Lisa red dress are currently residing on my dress mannequin dummy– (Daisy is the dummy’s name – just in case you ask.)  Daisy is residing in my office at the moment and doing an additional duty of holding the felted wool coat – just because it is very cold outside and it is a good fit.


DSC07718 (2)And for some reason as if I had nothing to do I started knitting again.  It is fun and sometimes I can actually do two things at once.


The photographs are a nice distraction from the everyday pressures so they continue to pop out of my camera. I enjoy sharing them here on the blog – keeping it simple while I do.

I am looking forward to sharing a stellar 2016 here when I can.  Life sometimes just gets  busy!


Have great New Year Folks.



Another Tax season near completion.

Done.  Well almost.  Tax returns for the year 2013 and of course, a few stragglers. My count is 190.  For the  three of us it is a lot of work – me, myself and I.  If you break it down that way it is easier to manage. Really!

It is not that doing taxes is hard – there can be a lot to remember especially in the year of change. That is when you should see a  professional.

Needless to say that my sewing projects were put on hold and the mending is piling up.

’I’ was able to source some cheap material from value village, one is a light mauve duck – 7.5 meters for 4$.  Can’t go wrong at that price.  I have a few ideas for it but first I need a skirt.  My old favorites are just that –old.  They will work as lining and interlinings but not much else.


More to come – the sewing is calling!

The Blue Hemp Dress: a follow up on not finishing the seams.

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Yes, it works like a charm!  The fraying that you see here will not increase.  Hemp linin is self finishing!  5 washes and the edges bind together like soft Velcro. 


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To boot, the first three washes, iron while still fresh from the washing machine and the seams learns to stay open!  I only need to iron if I need it to look crisp from here on.  The shots of the seams above are fresh from the dryer with no ironing. The caveat is to pull the dress (hemp linen garment) from the dryer (not an overly full one to crush the garment)  as soon as it stops and hang it up.  Put on a hanger and Done.


Here are some shots of the zipper after

One wash after the ironing.

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three washes (still damp but drying) and after the ironing.thursday 005

Love it!

Felted Wool coat is finished and warm for winter

coat 1Solstice finishings 007  Solstice finishings 005Just in time for Winter I finished the coat!

dec 20 13 011dec 20 13 017I removed the excess cotton lining from the sleeves and finished by folding the silk up and over the cotton and slip stitched to the wool. This stoke of laziness gave me a warm inner sleeve as the silk falls gently around my wrist.

I created hoops of hemp thread for the hooks at the top and waist. They work really well.dec 20 13 004dec 20 13 027

This was an overly long project but worth every bit.  The coat will keep me warm for our west coast winters!