Monday, August 23, 2021

Fabric, Deboning and Cleaning

 This bundle of Cheeky by Moda is going to be the prettiest thing you see in today's blog post.  Purchased online from someone destashing on Instagram.  I just can't pass up a good deal.  There's no plan or need for this fabric, it was just too good of a deal to pass up.

I can't even let go of old blue jeans.  Mr. Podunk cleaned out his closet this weekend so he could paint it and put in a new closet shelf.  In the process he also decided to get rid of clothing he could no longer wear.  He knows my obsession with fabric does not stop at quilting cotton.  Anything made of fabric can't be sent to Goodwill until it has been approved by me to leave the house.  He brought me several pair of blue jeans to inspect.  Jeans are the perfect fabric for making very durable camping quilts. these can't go to Goodwill.

An hour later I had them deboned and ready to be cut into usable squares.   This will be a project for another day.  There's too many other projects in the works right now.  And I would also like to purge our flannel shirts to add to the blue jean camp quilt.  

Making a jean quilt is not going to happen anytime soon.  I've worked really hard the last couple of weeks to get thing done.  I was making great progress until Friday.

Then this happened.  If you watched my last YouTube video you might have noticed I was having some issues with my machine.  I didn't mention it in the video but my machine was having a hard time pulling the fabric through.  Going over a seam was a real chore.  I had to assist it almost every time.   Taking it to the shop is out of the question.  The turn around time is 2 or 3 weeks.  Maybe I can fix myself.

Well my goodness!  All this lint might be the problem.  Shame on me for letting it get so bad. What can is say, I was having fun and the last thing on my mind was lint.  Surprisingly there isn't much lint on the feed dogs.  And to be honest it's been much worse in the past.  The red arrow is pointing at the thingamabob that I think might be the issue.  But before dealing with it I need to remove the lint.  

I had some new to me products just for cleaning sewing machine lint.  They came in a couple Fat Quarter Shop Sew Sampler subscription boxes.  

The first one I tried using was Oh Sew Clean by It's Sew Emma.  They did nothing.  The little brushes just moved lint around.  The lint wouldn't even stick to the brushes.  I tossed the brushes in the trash and kept the plastic box they came in.  The microfiber cloth was also kept for cleaning my glasses.

Next was the Sewing Machine Cleaning Brushes by the Fat Quarter Shop.  They did a pretty good job at getting into some smaller areas.  I would give them a thumb up only because the lint did stick to them.  Would I buy them?  No, I just don't think they can do anything special that other cheaper tools can do.  But I have them and I'll use them.

One of the best lint grabbing tools is  my old dollar store paint brush with plastic bristles.  I've been using this thing for about 15 yrs.  They came in a package of 5 different sizes. I keep one at my sewing machine and one at my longarm.

The next best lint grabber is a plain ole Q-tip.  Cotton holds onto cotton.  Almost all quilters have a flannel(cotton) design wall because it holds our blocks so well.   Sure the other two gadgets look pretty but they can't get the job done.  I don't need pretty cleaning tools, I need effective cleaning tools.  But if I really wanted cute little colorful Q-tips for my Studio the Dollar tree has them in a rainbow of colors at $1 for 100 generic Q-tips. 

After removing the lint it was time to tackle the feed dog issue.  Let's go back to this picture.  I removed the feed dogs to get to the thingamabob(red arrow)  Adjusting it solved the problem.  The problem was my feed dogs had fallen and were not coming above the plate.  This has been an on going issue for a couple of years.  This isn't the first time I've had to fix it.  My version of fixing it before lasted about a year and the part I added eventually failed.  When I tried to do the same thing this time it didn't work.  So I had to call in an expert, Mr. Podunk.  He's a airplane mechanic/car mechanic/maintenance man/repair guy.  Oh how I dislike asking for his help but this one was over my head.  I knew where the issue was but I was afraid to actually try to move the thingamabob.   He looked over, manually turned the flywheel then left without saying a word.  Upon his return he had the tools I needed to move the thingamabob.  He showed me how to adjust it.  It took 3 tries but I finally fixed it.  Oh happy day!  I can sew again with ease!

The tools needed to fix it were a crescent wrench and an allen wrench(red arrows).  But the best thing was he also gave me a few really nice wooden handled Q-tips(yellow arrow).  They are one ended and much longer than real Q-tips.  Funny how the smallest of things can make me so happy. 

This weekend I also took a little time out to update my social media photo.   My old social media picture was about 5 yrs old and was due for a change.   Is this the real me?  No not really.  It's rare for me to do my hair and makeup.  I even go to the store with my hair pulled up in a bun and no makeup.  I wear makeup 4 or 5 times a year.  Holidays or special occasions is about it.  So I guess it was a picture worthy moment.   Hurry take a picture!  Lea Anne's hair is out of the bun and she put makeup on!  HA!

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  1. I use inexpensive paint brushes also. The artist kind so small with a long handle. I love the q-tip idea. My daughter had given me those colorful little sticks they are ok but I agree I probably will not buy more. Taking a machine into the shop has gotten really expensive. It doesn’t happen around here very often so I try and be really good about cleaning.

  2. Thanks for the opinion on those those cleaning bits didn't work. I got a couple of natural bristle art brushes to use - a floofy one for large areas, and a smaller one for tight spots. Really small spots get pipe cleaners or cotton swabs. Good news on fixing the machine!

  3. For my link brush, I use the brush that came with my Elna purchased almost 50 years ago. I loved that machine but it finally gave up but the brush still works. I clean out my bobbin a lot, I figure it's an easy thing to do if it keep my machine going. You look very nice in your posed photo. Happy stitching!

  4. I wish I never had to wear makeup — it makes my face itch! When I put it on to go somewhere, I have to wash it off as soon as I get home. Your long hair is beautiful and I wish mine was thick enough for a bun or even a pony tail. I agree with you about the tools for cleaning, too — too funny about the the cute colored Q-tips from the Dollar Store!

  5. q tips are my go to after I brush lint out with my decrepit brush that came with the machine. brush, oil, run, then q tips that really get the rest of it.
    I loved hearing your fix and your pic is beautiful. Maybe not everyday but maybe at least once a week you could take the time to spruce up. I find I seldom spruce up as only dh is going to see me, but I forget I see me, and not being sad looking in the mirror is worth the bit of time, IMHO. Just me, just sayin' it made me feel better to do it at least once a month.

    I'm trying an eye cream now... but too little too late and it kind of irritates my eyes by end of day as the upper lid now droops. Anyway... just doing hair now, although I gave myself a bad cut this time, and it's hot here in CO so it's pulled into a pony tail on top anyway

  6. I'm old enough the only make up I use now is to give me eyebrows... since they mostly when white long before the head... percentage wise, and heavy hairs too! I think I would look odd with mostly medium brown hair but no eyebrows. I do NOT color my hair, i am going for the minimalist theme. Short hair, neutral clothing (always comfortable and always cotton) and NOTHING sexy at my age!


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