Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Pandora's Pillowcases ...

The self-inflicted exercise below has made me once again ponder the thought:
" How many fabrics made today will still be around in over 75 years
... especially if first boiled up in a saucepan & then thrown around in a washing machine !! "

Back in February I mentioned my 'lace cleaning' project ... so to refresh your memory:

Anyway since then (& with the trigger thumb problem), I'd not been able to finish & at the weekend, decided to have another go with the large box of scrap laces etc. I 'boiled' up a solution of the 'magic liquid' & cleaned 2 saucepan loads of scraps. I then proceeded to stage 2 ... a boil wash in the machine.

I gathered together all the pieces (above) including those done previously (but that hadn't had a final wash), put them all into several pillowcases & into a 90 degree boil wash they went. None of the bits were 100% white (more off-white) - several were very greyed - many were yellowed & all looked 'sad & tired'. As most pieces were only smallish lengths, I didn't bother to check any for wear or tear ... putting them in pillowcases would stop any machine blockages of looses bits! & in any event, they were, after all, only scraps.

The machine completed its wash cycle & I decided to leave everything to dry intact within the pillowcase (mainly because its quite difficult to prise apart any laces twisted together whilst washing). I hung them all in an airing cupboard for appx 24 hours & on Monday, although each parcel was still damp (but not wet), I filled my steam iron filled & then came the best bit ... OPENING EACH PANDORA'S PILLOWCASE!

And guess what ... every piece of lace or fabric (except 1 which had partially disintegrated & lost its stitches) had washed up like new. Opening each bundle 'parcel' was a surprise & delight. Each scrap piece that was pulled out & went under the iron was a pleasure to watch & witness its transformation ... from a crumpled mess into a piece of history brought to life. Every sample bit was brilliant white & one in particular that I'd almost thrown away, as I pressed it the term 'flowerings' sprung to mind.

After drying then pressing, they were sorted into their relevant types - here they are now:

Monday, September 12, 2011

Unusual sewing attachment ...

For many years I've been trying to find reference about an item I found amongst some sewing bits & pieces I bought (above left). A general concensus amongst family & friends was that it was something from the garden shed that had found its way into a sewing box I'd bought! For me, it reminded me of a sewing gadget I had ... known as a 'Singercraft Guide' (above left) & used for rug making. I kept it amongst my things & thought that one day 'all would be revealed'. It was ... yesterday on the Internet whilst 'trawling' I found my reference I'd hoped would appear: it's a Hemstitching Fork sewing attachment/accessory. If you'd like to know more about it have a look here:
... it's also a great blog for anyone with an interest in old Singer machines or who has their old sewing attachments.