Archives for the month of: January, 2011

This is my sewing machine. GM hooked me up with it not long before I moved to Los Angeles. It was her friend’s mother’s or grandmother’s. I lugged it out here, but I just got around to checking it out.

It’s a Singer Touch and Sew – II.

Judging from the looks of the manual, I think it’s from the late 70s. I’m so grateful and impressed that the previous owner still had the manual

and all the attachments

and all these disk that you use to make different kinds of stitches.

The first step (after the dusting) was getting the bobbin case back in place, so I could wind a bobbin.

Getting the bobbin case securely back in place turned out to be tricky even with the manual, which again I am so grateful to have. The instructions were basically slide the case in, turn, and then move that black metal shape on the right towards the left to hold the case in place. That all sounded good, but the black thing would hardly move. When I tried to wind a bobbin, the case would jump out of place and the thread would jam up. I got AVO involved and we used tiny pliers–my jewelery pliers–to lift the black piece up and force it to the right. This seemed like the kind of forcing that you are never supposed to do with delicate machinary, but it worked! I was able to wind a bobbin. I used the pink thread that came on the machine. Then I tried to sew and the tension was way off. All I got was lumps and knots. It turned out that unthreading the machine and rethreading it while looking at the manual fixed this. It came to me threaded, and I had just put the thread through the needle, but something about how it was threaded was off. Yeay, for easy fixes!

Then I made this necklace/scarf from an old T-shirt.

It only involved a little sewing, mostly it’s about braiding, but still I did actually use my new sewing machine to make something, so I was super pumped.

The necklace can also be worn doubled up. This is how I’ve been wearing it.

I used the directions from this site. I now want one in every color and I want to experiment with patterned fabric.


Fixed necklace two:

This necklace was from the Salvation Army in Hadley and I LOVE it. It was a real go to until it broke. It was originally strung on monofilament which my research (and experience) has told me is bad. From what I can tell, coated metal wire is what the beading community currently recommends.

Fixed necklace three:

Necklace three was my design from a few years ago and the only thing I’d beaded until now. The amber was from my dad, I think in the form of bracelets. I combined them with silver spacers, but I strung them in an ad hoc way and the necklace broke a while ago. I just restrung it and added more silver spacers to the back section to increase the length.

After I fixed necklace three, I made this:

These are green milk glass beads from Michael’s or Joanne’s. I had put the amber necklace on after I finished it, and I still had it on when I finished this one, which I thew on too. I wouldn’t have thought to wear them together, but their paths crossed on my neck, and I liked what I saw. I wore them both all day yesterday.

I got a beading tool kit and fixed the first of my three broken necklaces.

This necklace is from the thrift store a few years ago….maybe North Falmouth Thrift. I think the beads are wooden beads painted gold. It was originally strung on crappy wire that wanted to kink and brake apparently. I wore it a lot prior to the breaking. It’s now strung on new and improved wire that hangs very nicely. I’m a miracle worker, I know. (The gold pendant was my mom’s, but I got her to give it to me. Thanks, Mom.)

Happiness is a set of red metal drawers. I found this at Goodwill with AR during our thrift store extravaganza (which was more shop ’til you’re starving than shop ’til you drop). I’ve been looking for something to store my small drawings in for a while now and nothing has come close to the awesomeness of this.

I put all my small drawings in it and am so pleased–such an improvement over the “system” it replaces. LOVE it.


There was some confusion about scale. It’s petite which is perfect for my drawings. Here is a picture to clarify:

Some women like to match their shoes to their handbag or their lipstick to their dress. Me, I match my furniture to my tools. That reminds me, I saw a lady on Martha Stewart who gold-leafed her tools. You have to watch the video to see them. I’m not saying I’ll go there, but I’m not promising I won’t either. If I do, you’ll be the first to see my golden hammer.