Sewing anxiety, avoidance and fears

Everybody has a sewing bug-a-boo; something they dread doing in sewing or in the process of sewing. I collect these, so post yours if you care to.
My least liked task is cutting and marking, particularly dressweight fabrics cut on the bias. I know this can be managed with a lot of weights but that doesn’t keep me from wishing I had a vacuum table. I can say (emphatically) that sewing bias seams is easier if the cutting is precise.

While I’m thinking of it -fyi- bias does not need a french seam because it won’t ravel. Only silk cut on the straight of grain needs an enclosed seam.

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9 comments

  1. Most dreaded sewing tasks:

    1) patternmaking, if that counts as asewing task. Damn I suck; wish I could afford to hire someone!!

    2) anything involving slinky knit. That stuff makes my skin crawl.

    Can’t we say things we like, too?

    I like:
    1) pressing. Happiness is turning my iron on in the morning. Especially now that I have a nice iron.

    2) sewing straight lines. which I can finally do. (yay, I’m to step 1!!!)

  2. La BellaDonna says:

    For your collection:

    My sewing bugaboo is having to be clever. This actually sweeps across the entire panorama of the sewing activity, and involves such situations as: 1)Not having enough fabric for the task at hand. Now I have to be clever and figure a way around it. 2) Having to deal with a fabric bent on self-destruction; for instance, a)a silk-and-wool twill which wants to unravel as soon as I set scissors to it. Now I have to be clever and figure a way around it. or: b) a fragile green and gold metallic brocade which shatters when a machine needle stitches through it, and there’s yards to make up. Now I have to be clever and figure a way around it. 3) I have a transparent fabric, which needs to be boned. It also needs to stay transparent. Now I have to be clever and figure a way to transparently bone it.

    Some people would probably call these “challenges,” and say they’re part of what makes sewing exciting. I say it’s perversity on the part of the sewing gods, and is what drives seamster/seamstresses to the edge of homicidal mania.

  3. Andrea Baker says:

    I was just reading through old stuff that happened before I knew about FI…This one really has merit. Here’s mine:

    1)Zippers (until recently…thanks for the welted pocket tutorial, it opened up a whole new universe for me)

    2)Finding quick neat ways to finish seams when you only have 1/2 the information (no education to draw on…I have a great contractor who is helping me through, but I still get stuck)

    3)Figuring out the steps to sew a thing production style…I love and hate this process because I love finding ways that work but also know that this step is the one that will make or break my process. If it’s not right at the beginning, then it won’t be right at all!! It’s especially relevant when I am in development and haven’t had a pattern made.

    There are probably more, but those are the gut grippers.

  4. diane says:

    I’m enjoying the blog so much I decided to start from the beginning! Just want to add my 25 cents here.

    I dread cutting out interfacing! Fusing or sewing by hand, no problem! I will procrastinate on a garment because I have to interface it.

    I love cutting out dresses on the bias!
    I usually sew pre cut goods for art fair entrepreneurs, so getting the opp to cut it out precisely by myself is thrilling! But then again I deal in onsies and twosies…

  5. Lori says:

    You won’t hate cutting interfacing if you find you can iron it on the fabric and cutting out the collar or cuff – wherever it is to be used – as one. What a time saver, ease of cutting and no gooey mess on your ironing surface.

  6. Rin Koru says:

    It’s not exactly part of the sewing process, but still neccesery: threading the serger… mine is a tricky to thread hobby-serger too.

  7. Reader says:

    I hate tracing commercial patterns (I usually create a reserve copy and transfer a copy on to oak tag) and threading industrial sergers.

  8. bebevia says:

    1. Chalks. Tracing on fabric is just so tedious! Adding and drawing seam allowances straight from the pattern is even more so, especially since chalklines on fabric can never be as precise as pencil on paper. Fabrics even MOVE or JIGGLE(er, I feel like I feel the cushioning effect even on plain cotton when frustrated) when I draw!

    2. Yeah… cutting too. ‘Guess that’s where the above issue comes from. Vacuum table would be good. lol.

    3. Grain line matching. I wish fabrics can stay straight when desired, marked along with lines like those geometry drafting sheets that disappear at a magical spell. Would be great with vacuum table.

    = I guess it’s the matter of appreciating creative input in the process. Personally, above ones are where I feel least productive. I love rethreading surgers(only when I have time, though), the mechanical stuff :D

  9. Melissa Brown says:

    I used to hate cutting as a home-sewer, for years, for two reasons: 1. I was not good at it and 2. I was aware that any mistakes I made cutting were going to cause problems when I got to the sewing machine. (And this was before I worked on a line in a factory. Have I mentioned ALL the women in my family sew, and some professionally? Their attitude was “If you’re going to do something, do it right.” High standards always prevailed when it came to sewing. God help the child (me!) who wore something before it was “fixed.”)

    Then I got my first rotary cutter. I took to cutting using weights, instead of pins, like a duck to water. I went out and bought two of the largest cutting mats I could find (enough to cover my work surface and let me cut out pants without having to shift a mat) and I have never looked back.

    Now my bugaboo is fitting. Everytime I start to think I’ve got something fit properly, I find another adjustment to make. Argh!

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