Sunday, December 18, 2016

Power Tools

Authors Note: Almost all the sewing this month is for presents, and I'm just not interested in showing my hand on what I made for you guys. This is the only time of year you guys read this thing, so you can read about your grandfather.
---------------
I am my father's daughter in many ways. I love to figure out how to fix something. I appreciate good work done well and don't mind paying for it.
Somewhere in the 70s, with coffee. Always coffee.
 He loved tools. And so do I.

I inherited the power tools from my dad's workshop when he and my non-evil stepmother moved into the condo. He had recently purchased a used floor drill press, so that, the table saw I learnt on as a child (the carrot as finger demonstration is ETCHED into my memory, thank you) and the good tools came to live in the house we're still in now.
Dad and NonEvil Stepmother at Pirate Party 2003

I built myself a decent workbench (still lacking a proper vise) and put up a peg board. I have added a metal shelving unit with double shelves, crammed with diaper wipe boxes full of screws, bolts, plastic bits, rocket parts, and a wide assortment of Ikea parts. Because K/D furniture is like Lego for adults. And diaper wipe boxes are my variation on my father's coffee can collection.
A tribute to the brilliance of the diaper wipe container.

I do not have my mother's sewing machine. I had my own Elna SU* when she died, and had always hated her Singer Touch and Swear 601e.

Of course, since then I have discovered the 601e's secret chain stitch powers, and now covet one. I keep finding ones that can't be repaired, but I think I can give up on that quest: I can use the chain stitch on the Janome. Not quite the one thread wonder I was hoping for.

The point of this post, besides thinking about my pops around his birthday, is the best machine for a job is the one that works the way your brain does. 

I discovered late in life that I am a front loading bobbin gal. Top loaders always fail for me. I bring my Kenmore 158 rather than use my pal's Brother at the theater; it won't behave for me and it ends in profanities. She is appalled by my small stitch selection and overly selective bobbin winder (spools changed at some point, the new ones don't fit on the old spindle) 

I miss my dad. He never learned to sew, but he remodeled the house and did iron his own shirts and I give him major props for that. I bought my husband his own ironing board and iron to that end. He stays away from the table saw. Working out so far.

I don't have a photo of my old Elna, this photo from Needlebar and a sweet history lesson on the Elna line. 

*My dad offered me a choice at high school graduation of a new sewing machine or a used car. I went with the machine that cost as much as the car. It ran well for twenty years, and then would not hold a tune up and I got talked out of it. Fool!

1 comment:

Thanks thanks thanks. Together, we can make more better makes. You know what I mean, clever you!