Saturday, 16 August 2008

I Think I Might be Able to Fly an Aeroplane Now

Guess what? it's raining again! Infact, we have yet another severe weather warning here in Oxfordshire. Storms they say. But Am I Bovvered? NO! Because today has been my first chance to be alone with my lovely new overlocker. It's been like pilot training I tell you. I haven't written this many notes since I did my science O-Levels back in the 80's.

After a few false, but not unenthusiastic starts, I decided to go through the manual page by page, ticking each item as I went. This is rather methodical for me, but it seems to be the only way to make sure all functions are embedded into the brain properly. Thank you to Florence for assuring me that endurance is the best policy here because there were many times this afternoon, when I thought I might have received a faulty machine and would have to send it back.
The model of Overlocker that I chose has colour coded tension dials and threading holes. So the thread which goes through dial 1 which is green, follows through all the green coded holes and loops and so on. Easy peasy (easier if you are an elf with elf sized fingers!).

Actually, despite being thoroughly intimidated at first, threading this overlocker is not difficult. Fiddly yes. Hard no. Even then, after a bit of practice, it's no less bother than threading your sewing machine.

Each step took quite a long time to master. I started off with 4 thread overlocking, then progressed to three threads with left or right needle, then two threads, then rolled hems. Each setting is different and produces a different result. As with most instruction manuals , it was sometimes hard to follow. So working left to right in the picture above, you can see my progress during each step as I worked out the bits the manual didn't cover! Like, HOW to insert the "spreader" for 2 thread sewing, amongst other things.

Following advice from Marmadaisy (who's review and pictures I was firmly glued to for the whole afternoon) , I decided that the best policy is to make lots of samples with notes on.

There was a lorralorra tea drinking going on, followed by a lorralorra mess!

But FINALLY, with the basics mastered, it was time to sew something for real.

A top I made a few weeks ago and never hemmed. This is the edge my sewing machine made with it's fake overlock stitch.

And THIS, is the finished result with overlocker, complete with automatically sawn off rough edge. It took a death defying 10 seconds to do, as opposed to the many more minutes, possibly even hours, it would have taken to press, sew, press in the traditional way.

The difference perhaps, between Concorde and a Jumbo Jet.


Kathi D said...

You are probably qualified for brain surgery as well.

Marmadaisy said...

Wow! You have been busy, haven't you? I love the top you made, and suspect you are soon to be an overlocking expert.

Joleo said...

Not so scary then after all - and that top is beyond lovely :)

Helen said...

Great idea to make notes on the test strips. I have such a bad case of overlocker envy now - everyone seems to be getting one! Nuclear physics should be a breeze now you've made your way through that instruction manual. The top looks great!

Gina said...

All your effort in mastering the machine have paid off - that top is lovely.

Tracy said...

That top is it! Looks like all your hard work paid off and you are now overlock-pro ;o) Your note taking is admirable. Am still learning all the new trick of my new-ish sewing machines...notes along the way is a good idea. Happy Sewing ((HUGS))

jennyflower said...

Anything in life that is worth doing is a sodding nightmare! (the only justification for two year olds!) Your hard work was definetly worthwhile huh? Can't work out why your jeans are on backwards though! tee hee!

Indigo Blue said...

I agree! I have loads of samples with numbers etc written on them. My students thought I was nuts when I told them to do the same. Now they make samples for anything that is new to them. keep in a file or on a pinboard. Keep going you are definately winning the battle.

dottycookie said...

OK, now I want one too. My bank manager is not going to be pleased ;-)

The top is absolutely gorgeous.