So, no big deal, but my entire world was rocked this week and nothing will ever be the same again.
If you’ve been reading here for any amount of time, you might know that I have an adversarial relationship with my sewing machine. It mocks me, you guys. I’m not imagining it.
It coos to me in a soft voice like this: “Heyyyy Kelly. I’m just a sweet little ol’ sewing machine. I’m not bad! Remember those times when you sewed straight lines? It was so much easier than you’re remembering! You didn’t shake your fist at the sky or curse the day you were born. You LOVED it. You’re just remembering it wrong. How hard can sewing be?!”
And then it winks and smiles, like a big fat jerk.
I have spent too many hours hunched over that old machine, trying to sew a basic straight line, while the thread bunched up and ripped, or the whole machine jammed, or the CURSED THREAD REFUSED TO GO IN THE NEEDLE.
There was yelling, tears, things were thrown. Andy would hear the screams of agony and approach me slowly and carefully, talking to me in soothing tones, like you would if you came upon a rabid dog.
I just couldn’t understand: if there are PEOPLE who can sew, why am I not one of them? Do I have some kind of sewing-specific disability?
Finally in the midst of a discussion about whether it’d be reasonable and prudent to simply throw the machine off a tall cliff so I could watch it smash into a million pieces while I laugh maniacally, Andy suggested that perhaps its time to try a new sewing machine.
I liked the sound of that: yes, it’s the machine’s fault! What we need to do is BUY something! Spending money is always a nice, comforting answer, isn’t it? So we hunted around and ended up with this guy. (affiliate link)
It’s the Singer Quantum Stylist 9960. It had great reviews and it looked like it did everything automatically, short of choosing the best fabric for your project. So we ordered it. I took it out of the box and read the manual one day, decided it seemed promising, and…
did nothing with it.
For a year.
There was a lot at stake here, you have to understand.
The more I let it sit there, in its package, the more I feared it. Until the time came to finally hang my new office curtains. Out of the package, they looked like this:
Given the sewing machine situation, I saw two initial options:
1. Simply raise the ceiling by approximately six inches.
2. Try to pretend like this looked good. “They’re POOLING! It’s LUXURIOUS!,” I said, too loudly and obviously lying, in an attempt to convince myself and the zero other people who were listening. I put forth an impressive effort to talk myself into liking the fact that the curtains were so long they flowed across the floor into the next room.
No dice: they looked ridiculous and it was time to finally learn the new machine. The truth would be revealed once and for all: was it my machine this whole time, or am I just a freaking idiot? (The latter would still be an option, regardless of how this turned out.)
I pinned them to a length where they would just kiss the floor.
(…instead of slobbering all over the floor and groping it drunkenly, like they were before.)
I set up on the dining room table, read through the manual, watched a couple youtube videos for good measure, and entered the fire.
I DID IT.
I DID IT, you guys!
Can you see the sense of calm and serenity in that photo?! The words “calm” and “serenity” have never been associated with me and a sewing machine before.
I think it all came down to this: I cannot for the life of me predict what sort of exact tension measurement my machine required of me, which needed to be correct to the tenth of a percent. The NEW machine has an automatic tension adjustment. It’s invisible. It doesn’t need anything from me.
It also threads the needle AND cuts the thread itself, which is more mind-boggling to me than I’d like to admit.
This is not a review of this sewing machine: I bought it myself and was not compensated in any way. All this gushing is just genuine excitement that for once, I sat down, threaded a machine, sewed a simple hem, and was finished. There was no back-and-forth. There was no frustration. Only satisfaction.
You guys, why didn’t you tell me about this?
Anyway: everything is different now. I feel like I can conquer the world, if only I can figure out how to actually cut a square piece of fabric with actual 90-degree angles. If you’ve been waiting for permission to spring for the fancy tool? DO IT.
I realize this is not an inspiring DIY project for you, but if this blog is meant to catalog the “view along the way” as we figure this DIY thing out and make our house presentable? Then this was a major, major milestone in my book. The whole WORLD IS OPENED TO ME!
Needless to say, I have spent the last few days frolicking in meadows, hand-in-hand with my new machine, pausing to kiss under a parasol. It’s been very romantic.
Have you ever realized it was a tool – and not you – causing all the problems in your life?