Jennifer felt sick this morning and so stayed home today. She’s spent her day working on some web work for my stuff because she’s awesome like that. Care for a sneak peek? We’re planning on updating The Holster Site with a similar look, and I’ll probably do the same thing here. Initially, I attempted to keep a separation between my personal blog and my professional online presence, but that kind of fell apart with various online connections. It just wasn’t worth it.
Anyway, I’m afraid that Wee Bot may be getting sick as he’s been quite a handful today. He has a hard time controlling his emotions anyway, but he’s been downright weepy today. It’s really frustrating when he cries over stupid stuff, and I really believe it’s just a phase of some kind, but I try very hard to reason it through with him and help him gain some perspective on it. “Why are you crying? Is that worth crying about? Then maybe you shouldn’t react that way. Can you think of a better way to express your disappointment?” I definitely resist the urge to say, “QUIT ACTING LIKE A TEENAGE GIRL!!!!!!” Additionally, he’s had a rough day with virtual school. He’s been extremely hard-headed about some of the concepts in his lessons today.
I was about this close to depositing my Bernina 830 Record on the front lawn by way of my studio window. I’ve been working on this really cool, experimental, thigh holster for a blogger who is married to another blogger who will wear her snubby under her skirt in said thigh holster. It really is turning out sexy. Most of these things are black nylon, but this one is much more like lingerie. For the strapping, I was using the Bernina sewing machine to stitch a Lycra tube that a heavy duty elastic strap feeds through. The Bernina was dropping stitches and generally acting like a pain in the butt. I called the Bernina store for advice. The employee I spoke with advised that I use a smaller needle and a different stitch cam. She also told me that Lycra is notoriously difficult to sew. The smaller needle and stitch cam mostly solved the problem.
I decided to use a different thread, and had to empty a bobbin to do so. I had a Bernina bobbin loaded up with Kevlar thread and decided to offload it to one of my Consew bobbins as the Bernina hates Kevlar thread and I’ve got a bunch of empty Consew bobbins. I didn’t want to just throw it out because the Kevlar is pretty pricey. I probably should have made sure there wasn’t a bobbin in the Consew, because as it was winding the bobbin, something in the shuttle caught the end of the thread that was in the bobbin in it, and wound it around the shuttle about a jillion times and jammed the machine. I had to open it up and disassemble that part of the mechanism so I could un-jam it before I could finish winding the other bobbin.
Once I finally had an empty Bernina bobbin, I started winding it with this very fine nylon thread I wanted to try. There was something wrong with the tension on the thread though, and I had the bobbin half full before I saw that it was not wound properly and I had to unwind what had wound and rewind it. Of course, the thread tangled and I had to throw a bunch of it away. It didn’t fill the bobbin, but it gave me enough to work with to do the project. Annoying, but good enough at this point.
The finer thread went ahead and fixed the Bernina’s previous problem with missed stitches. But, then the machine started jamming on a wad of thread it was making on the bottom side of my material, as though the tension was screwed up. I unclogged the machine for about the sixth time in a row and lost my temper. Rather than pick stitches out of my material again, I took my sewing shears and hacked the errant end off the Lycra tube. There was plenty of length for me to work with – I usually leave myself lots of margin for error. When I fed it through the machine again, the Bernina behaved like an angel, as though the problem had actually been that specific section of fabric.
Yeah, I do all the manly stuff around here like cooking and sewing. 😛
Needless to say, I’ve been working on these straps all day. And, I haven’t finished them yet. It should not have taken me all day to make these stupid straps. I can’t afford to work like this. I’ve pretty well decided that I just don’t like household sewing machines. I’m seriously considering selling my Bernina and Husqvarna Viking and putting the money towards an industrial serger. Any time I’m not doing a straight stitch, I find myself wishing I had a serger. Anyway, between having a sick wife at home, a frustrating kid, and unbelievable equipment issues, I sure could use a smoke. I’m still not giving up though. I’ve worked too hard at it to give up so easily.