Monday, 10 February 2014

Heart on a String

After the success of my last sewing project I was ready to tackle another one. Well....not exactly ready. It looked as though I may have broken my sewing machine after I was finished the bow tie project. And like any good sewer I had wrestled free the last thing I was trying to make, tossed it out, and stuck the sewing machine in a closet in the hopes it would think about what it had done and correct itself.

But I had this cute heart garland pinned for awhile and thought it would be a perfect project for a low skill sewer like me. I even had everything already on hand so it would be a no cost project. The only problem was that the sewing machine and I haven't talked since December and I was thinking it wouldn't be happy.

I was right.

My problem was threads that were getting pulled down and caught up in the lower bobbin area - which after extensive Googling I found out is called the birds nest. This is appropriate since every time I tried to sew something I ended up with a nest of threads wrapped around this whole area.

So I took everything apart, clean and oiled my machine, and re-threaded.

Same problem.

I adjusted the top and lower tension.

No difference.

I turned it off and left it sitting on the kitchen table to think about what it had done.

I think it laughed at me.

In a last ditch effort the next day I re-threaded it again adjusting how the top thread spool was
secured. And for some reason it worked.

Once I had everything working this project was unbelievably easy. The instructions here are great so I wont go over them all again.

Because I was working with stuff I already had around the house, and I don't follow instructions exactly, I did make some changes.

1. My strips were 2 inches wide - it worked better with my scrap pieces of felt and the size of felt balls I had (they were 1/4")

2. I didn't have a marking pen - so I just used a scrap of paper as a template to cut my hearts

3. I cut my heart to be 1/2 inch thick (instead on 3/4) - it just worked better with the smaller height and smaller felt balls

As I said before this was a super easy project and required basically no sewing skills. If you want to give this a try I would suggest the following

  • Mark with a small dot where you will thread the hearts. When you are marking the cut lines (which would probably result is more uniform sizes then my template method) mark with a small dot where you will thread the hearts. you can mark on the inside - or the outside which will be covered by the felt ball. I eyeballed it and the hearts on my garland are a slightly different heights and depths.
  • Using clear fishing line. I lost my fishing line (lost, because since I haven't been fishing in 20years I know I didn't use the enormous spool up) so I used while thread instead. I find this bunches and tangles a lot and is more noticeable.
  • Make extra hearts. Since they are so easy to make you might as well make more while you are at it. I would have liked to have a longer garland but I already put everything away when I was stringing the hearts so just left it
I think this would be a great project for kids who are just learning to use a sewing machine. It is also a quick and easy project if you wanted to add some last-minute decorations - and would look great using a variety of colours and would be cute a decoration for a shower or birthday part (not just for Valentines Day).


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