Since getting my sewing machine I’ve been dying to use it! There was the delay because I had to buy the oil for it and losing Eileen (my tutor) and it was making me crazy! I wanted to actually accomplish something! So, for Learning to Sew Part IV I decided to fix a pair of jeans. It did not go as well as I’d hoped but I learned things!
The first thing I realized is that fixing the jeans wasn’t going to be as easy as I’d thought. Instead of just needing a simple, right along the seam line of stitches I was going to have to patch them. This was because the material had separated where the seam had pulled. Credit for that has to go to my enormous bottom.
Mr. Comfortable found an old pair of his jeans that I could cut up to make the patch. That part was easy. I measured the tear in my jeans and cut a piece of the patch material a little longer than the tear. I marked the patch material but you can see I wasn’t great at cutting a straight line.
Next I decided to try to turn the ends of the patch under so it wouldn’t fray even more. I started with a short end and got it pinned. Now I know why people use thimbles. The dark spot on the material is my blood.
I stitched that short end but, as I was doing it something kept going wrong. I finally realized that I’d put the bobbin in so it was feeding incorrectly. It tangled up and I’m lucky I didn’t break the needle! That was an easy fix. I just flipped the bobbin around in the case and brought the thread back up as though I’d done it right the first time.
But, by the time I’d figured out what was going wrong I was getting really tired. I’d started this little project around 8 p.m. and, by that time I’m usually hanging on by a thread (no pun intended). Since I was getting impatient I thought it would be okay to just sew the patch in without turning it under. I’d already had a large can fall out of the pantry and hit me in the ankle and I also dropped a knife, pointed side down, on my foot. Those incidents should have been my warning I was too tired to continue.
I carefully pinned the first side of the patch to the seam on the jeans. It took a little experimenting to learn how to sew with the pins in; you have to take them out as you go. But I got that first long side of the patch sewn on.
By the time I finished with that, with a break to take the dogs outside because they just had to spend 20 minutes sniffing where the deer had walked earlier, I was really tired. I should have stopped right there but I wanted to finish that little patch. That’s where I made another mistake.
I didn’t pin the patch on the second long side. Oh. And I’d sewn the other short end of the patch which may have contributed to the problem. Everything looked fine when I checked the inside of the jeans. The patch was on. It wasn’t perfect but it was there.
Then I turned the jeans right side out and realized that there was a large puckered area. This was probably the result of me not pinning the patch on the last side.
I actually thought I’d be able to rip that side of the patch off and do it correctly last night. That would have been disastrous, I’m sure! But, as I pawed through my (very) old sewing box I realized that my seam ripper has disappeared. I’m going to have to get one since I’m not really confident about ripping the stitches out with scissors and not doing more damage.
And I think I’m going to cut the frayed material away, turn the edge under, and sew that before I even try patching it again. I realized it looks just awful with that shredded fabric still there. But, it is a learning experience!
The great thing is that I found a $20 bill in the bottom of the sewing box! It’s probably from about 1995 and I don’t know why it’s there but I’m delighted! Now I can buy a seam ripper!