Silky Knit – 1, Sewer- 0


Remember Stretch Armstrong?  Definitely one of the 2nd to 3rd string cartoon characters regardless of his low-cut onesie, sideburns and Studio 54esque eyewear.  I didn’t like him much then and I feel pretty much that way now. For my lack of respect for his powers  is haunting me in textile form.  Sunday I started a little dress- a simple, maxi in a brown and turquoise paisley print- one of the Deanna surprise haul fabrics- I visualized myself in a flowing, flattering frock with large bangle bracelets, a look of serenity and a fancy drink. Sometimes in my fantasies I am a Stepford Wives-era Paula Prentiss. Wry, stylish and unaware of her loveliness. This dress would have brought Jim Hutton back from the dead, I am so sure.

   Now I visualize creating a fancy paisley noose for myself and the sewing machine. That silky stretch material has almost beaten me. I bow my head to its tyranny.

Lets recap the day.

Ah, 2219- you look so easy- the kind of easy that is deceptively impressive to the viewer. Love that.

So I set up the new bobbin, ballpoint needle, silk pins and off I go. Hmm. What is that grinding noise? Why do I keep making the same gentle leading motions as usual as the fabric not only stays put, but attempts to tunnel under the presser foot? At this point in the movie version a montage of jangly music would be playing- possibly to cover the latin terms I was flinging while I sent 3 hours wrestling with this dress, then recutting new pieces to replace chewed victims and the screw driver became more useful than the seam ripper. 

Finally the husband emerged from down the hall and stood at the entrance to the Sewers Bordello inquiring about the need for tourniquets and priests.

Well, a culprit was eventually found. Children, listen to this embarrassing cautionary tale and learn. A giant pressed felt dust bunny was living under the throat plate of my machine and the bun-bun did not like silky stretch very much. I routinely clean out the bobbin carriage area and go thru a gazillion q-tips drenched in oil, but rarely do I remove the throat plate. Amazingly, once I exorcised the fuzzy demon, all was smooth sailing.

Maybe Stretch and I will form a super hero alliance after all.

4 thoughts on “Silky Knit – 1, Sewer- 0

  1. Hmm, I’m not familiar with Stretch Armstrong, but I was quite fond of Plastic Man at one point (they look practically identical, however). My childhood superhero exposure was strongly biased by what was available on VHS at my local video store, though…

    At least you figured it out! Slinky fabrics are my Kryptonite at the best of times, though. My main machine recently threw a hissy fit and froze up… I wonder if removing my throat plate and cleaning out would do the trick… (hey, a girl can dream)

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