The Coma of the Zodiac Clutch

When last we spoke, dear readers, I was engaged in an apparently ambitious plan to sew a clutch out of wonderful Zodiac glitter vinyl. I was having a bit of trouble with the printed directions, but my mom deciphered at least the first hurdle. Okay, good to go. Or so I thought?

Have you ever sewn this kind of fabric before?
No. But it’s okay, I switched to a heavy-duty needle.
That’s good, but you should know that the vinyl may stick to your needle plate. If that happens, you put a scrap of pattern tissue in between, and sew through it. You can tear it out when you’re finished.
Oh, thanks! That’s good to know. Woo, go Mom, with the handy hints!

And, as I begin sewing, I keep that tidbit in mind. As long as I’m sewing right-sides-together, everything is fine. Then it’s time to turn out the flap, and stitch down the edges… stick. Stick stick stick. Not only to the needle plate, but also to the presser foot. I don’t have “spare” pattern tissue, but I do have plain ol’ white gift-wrapping tissue. And voila, no more sticking.

Except, now I can’t see what I’m doing. I try my best to stitch down the flap edges by feel. Um, yeah no. Not straight. And, when I pull away the tissue, a Large Quantity remains caught under the thread. White tissue on a red clutch. Yeah, that’s kinda conspicuous. Okay, well, at least it’s vinyl. When I’m done with all of the sewing, I’ll run it under some water if I have to. The crooked stitch isn’t good, but I’ll do better on the next one. And this bad one will eventually have a big, industrial snap going over it, so noone will even notice. Moving along…

Here is where I have to do the first of the “Huh?” maneuvers. I need to take the two raw edges of this flap, move one edge 1/4″ down in the center, and do a zigzag stitch to keep in in place. Then trim away the excess. The stiffness of the vinyl makes this difficult. I squinch it down, I pin as best I can, I zigzag, I trim. The tissue tears away from the zigzag with great lack of success. As bad as the crooked stitch looked, I have now made it Much Worse. I am losing my will to see this through, but also very much want to have this fabulous new clutch for the weekend. I begin to read ahead in the directions but can no longer make heads or tails out of anything.

It is now two weeks later, and my equipment is still spread all over the sewing dining room table. Every time I look over at it, I am disenheartened. I’m still using my fabulous pinstriped purse every day, but it’s like driving a car that badly needs an oil change. The pinstriped purse really needs to visit a leather shop to have the handle restitched, and the bottom reinforced. If I wait too long, the wear will be too great to repair.

Suddenly, Revamp purses are looking… well, still too expensive. But yeah, I now understand how difficult this damn fabric is to work with. Le sigh.

random assortment of thoughts

My real neighbors (take THAT, Dave and Jessi!) are back in town for a couple of days. I spent a good chunk of Thursday with them, which was a lot of fun. We drove up to Boulder to grab some lunch, and as usual, the weather in Boulder was about 2 degrees warmer than absolutely perfect. So we walked around for a while, popping into various stores along the Pearl Street Mall. We played with EVERY SINGLE wind-up toy in Into The Wind. For some reason which is still unclear to me, although much appreciated, they gave me a Home Depot gift card. I immediately spent it on a new front porch light fixture and a neato programmable switch. The way I have it set, the light comes on at dusk but goes off at 11 instead of staying on ALL FRIGGIN’ NIGHT until dawn. Now that I have the new fixture installed… it looks kinda small. I don’t exactly have a grand entrance, but this light looks like it’s scaled for a dollhouse. Also, a CFL sticks out of the bottom a bit. I may have to uninstall and return it. 😐

I have been sleeping funny-peculiar, and that combined with this whole unemployed-and-trying-to-freelance-for-reals thing is taking a toll on my neck and shoulders. In a stroke of good luck, my favorite massage therapist, who moved to L.A. a while back, is in Denver this weekend. Shout out to seeing Carrie, good conversation, and getting that gnarly knot out of my neck!

My father is coming up to visit next weekend, and, as per usual, my house is a MESS. It boggles the mind, how quickly I manage to clutter this place up.

Eric Laufer, lead singer for the Two Timin’ Four, was killed in an early-morning hit-and-run in Austin on Thursday. His body was found nearly a mile away from his bike. I am sickened.

ADDENDUM: It was Eric’s bike that was dragged that distance, not Eric. The events are still tragic, though slightly less horrific.