Thursday, March 10, 2011


This is my old mech-
anical Kenmore. I bought it to recover the sofa cushions our crazy dog Cody ate. He was a highly inbred show-quality dog travesty. I was excited to get this machine on sale for under $300 dollars and figured it paid it's way since we didn't have to buy another sofa.
Fifteen years later, here is my new compu-
terized Brother CS6000I, which rated 4.5 stars in 536 reviews on Amazon. It was half the price of my Kenmore. Don't we live in interesting times? All those things in the foreground are the feet that I had to stop and understand. Most features are as expected but I do like it that I can adjust the sewing speed and it automatically buries the needle in the fabric when you stop sewing. I like a button that lowers and raises the needle so that you don't have to turn the wheel. Now if I could only train myself not to turn the wheel.

Not only am I relearning about sewing and now a new machine, but I'm becoming acquainted with pattern sizes. They have NO bearing on department store sizing. According to measurements, I should sew a size 18, but when I shop I buy size 12. I made these PJs in size large. Given the EXPENSIVE ugly fabric, I'm not disappointed to learn that I apparently am size medium.
Apart from the ugly Strawberry Cupcake colors and the bizarre stretchy cotton, the pattern was ginormous and the top was too short. So I added a strip of fabric onto the hem to make it sleepable and decided the neck was just too gapey and added some fabric there too. I'm actually not sure this rustely fabric is sleepable. It might just have been a sewing exercise. A very expensive one. It's so loud, I hope I can sleep.
I was much cheered when this book came. I'd had it in my Amazon shopping basket so when I ordered the sewing machine, I ordered this, Jenny Dean's natural dye book. It's been out of print forever. Last year when I went to buy it, it was out of print and the only copies were nearly a hundred dollars. For a book!

I always seem to be looking for a cliff to jump off of. I've been doing yoga on our Wii Fit. Last week I was teaching neighbor Carrie to knit and it came up that she was recently certified in Astanga yoga and has just started a yoga class out here in our valley. I went to my first session tonight. It's at the Ross Creek club house and we couldn't start until we got the woodstove going. I realize now there are many schools of yoga and I'm just happy to have this one class opportunity. I've only seen pictures of people in yoga poses so I had no idea that yoga is so difficult, requires so much flexibility and physical stamina. I know I need to make it a daily practice, as soon as I know how to do it. I ran for many many years and I thought that was hard, but this is hard. Harder.


Marion B. said...

Oh Sharon, I hope you don't mind but it is ugly hihi. But you wearing it makes it lovely :-)

Theresa said...

Well, that is some fabric and now it won't be hanging in your stash making you feel guilty either! :) The machine looks awesome! Don't get discouraged with all the goodies on it, I still am referring to my manual for stuff and I have to look at the instructions for what each of the feet do etc.
Lucky to have a new yoga class to go too! I wish there was one up here. There are a ton of places in town, but I know I would never bother to drive down the mountain for them especially in bad weather or at night.

Valerie said...

Do you follow Jenny Dean's blog? She's at

I am a yoga devotee and have been for more than 20 years now, taking 3 different classes a week (Ahstanga, Anusara, and Hatha) in addition to home practice. There is nothing like it for connecting to your body. Listen to your body and back off when it tells you. Shoulder and knee injuries are the most common yoga injuries. Shoulders from people doing chaturanga before they are ready and knees from trying to force lotus and half lotus before their hips are open.

There are really good video podcasts and introductions to the asana's on Welcome to the fold!

LA said...

I caught a program on PBS last night that was discussing using yoga with arthritis patients. You're lucky to have an instructor near you! Can't wait to see what you sew next!!!

Anonymous said...

You persisted with the fabric which I think looks o.k. as pajamas. ;) Maybe it will fade a little in the wash?

Anonymous said...

Meant to say something about Wild Colour - I borrowed it from the library and kept reborrowing it all last summer. Time to get my own I think!

Laura said...

Ok, I kind of like your jammies... It's weird because I profess not to like pink, but lately I've been drawn to it. I have a "raspbery" carhart jacket, fucshia feed buckets (so I can find them in the field, I told myself), the pony has a pink halter... Hmm, I'm seeing a pattern here.

I like your description of your machine. I'm a lapsed seamstress - when I was a kid, I had an unlimited clothes budget, so long as I made them. I like knitting better, now. However, having a machine that you can touch and go sounds nice.

I have one of the first printings of Jenny's book - I love it. It's so descriptive, the color photos are wonderful, and I use it alot when I use Natural Dyes.

Good luck with yoga. I need to do something, but I'm not sure that's it, since I can't kneel anymore.

Can't wait to see what you come up with next!!

Nina said...

The new machine is very spiffy and I like all the bits and pieces that go with it. Great deal!

Sometimes the investment in getting back confidence with an old skill is worth the money, even if you end up with rustling, find me in the dark pyjamas. Who knows, maybe you'll start a new trend?

Yay for the yoga classes.

Purple Fuzzy mittens said...

Maybe if you dumped them in some indigo you would get a nice purple.... ;-)

Leigh said...

Between you and Theresa, I'm now thinking about sewing machines. Mine has a missing screw for the bobbin case, which I could may have replaced??? Funny about the patterns. It seems we used to have to take larger pattern sizes than our store sizes. Times they are a'changing?

Judy said...

What a nice machine and it looks like it will be fun for you to learn how to use all of those feet/attachments :-) Sewing can be fun, but sometimes very frustrating. The size issue is one of the very frustrating parts of clothes sewing!

The yoga sounds interesting. I'm curious to hear more. I was thinking of trying that, just for more strength and flexibility for skiing.

You have such an intesting life Sharon.