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2012 June 28
by elizabeth_admin

Today’s first world problem is how to pack for the big move.  I have lots of decisions to make and things to do, like:

  • Culling all the paperwork and mail from the last year
  • Deciding if I can finally let go of the large box of voice lesson tapes after carting them around from apartment to apartment for 11+ years
  • Coming to terms with the fact that Jack is able to let go of his train set, but that I cannot yet
  • Choosing what can sit on a truck for 3-4 weeks and what I absolutely must take with me on the plane

Of course, my most urgent priority is deciding which sewing paraphernalia I am going to take on the plane with me.  Duh!  What did you think it would be?  I am making a mental list of theoretical clothes to take, but it keeps getting longer and longer and then I have to also bring whatever notions I will need to make the theoretical a reality. 

This morning I went through my patterns and fabric to see what I wanted to work on right away when I get to San Diego.  So far I have come up with the following list to be made in this order:

1.  Haley’s and Chloe’s birthday dresses in coordinating fabrics bought from P&S fabrics.  I am going to make simple shirred bodices with bias tube shoulder straps and maybe add some trim at the hem.


2.  Maxi dress (no pattern, just a rectangle with elastic casings) a la what Meg just sewed.


3.  Jack’s Lightning McQueen jammies.  I’m not sure which pattern yet, but I want it to be pullover and may use an interlock knit for part of the top half. 


4.  The Kelly green skirt (finally!) using V1247, the Rachel Comey skirt.



5.  Another B5454 wrap dress, this time with an FBA using one of my border prints.  Can’t decide which one yet.


A pleated skirt with the ikat fabric from Gayfeather Fabrics in Madison WI, probably V8127, which is OOP apparently.



7.  The V1297 dress using a striped knit from Mood.



I have a ton more I want to add to the list, but I think I might not have room for our already made clothes.  I am planning on carrying on my serger and my coverstitch machine on the plane.  Am I nuts?

Don’t answer that.

19 Responses leave one →
  1. June 28, 2012

    Yes. Nuts. Oh sorry, I wasn’t meant to answer that 😉

  2. June 28, 2012

    It’s unlikely you will sew all that in the 3 weeks it takes to move. Declare your machines as High Value Items and let them ship.

    • elizabeth_admin permalink*
      June 28, 2012

      I might ship them, but I will be on vacation for at least a month after I arrive in San Diego and my movers won’t arrive for at least 3-4 weeks, so I won’t be doing any unpacking. Ergo, I will have plenty of time to sew. YEAH!!!!!

  3. June 28, 2012

    I was going to suggest shipping some items too since I’ve made your move a few times 😉 You could also find out the max size bag you can check on the plane and the extra bag fee may be less than shipping for the more essential non-essentials.

    Happy moving!

  4. annie permalink
    June 28, 2012

    Well, now. The machines are too dear to buy another, although I did get a Bernina 801 on ebay recently. Think about that as an after-move purchase. Also, you can buy fabric after the move, wait for your stuff and be surprised all over again.

  5. kay permalink
    June 28, 2012

    Maybe you can take only woven projects, and then you wouldn’t have to worry about carrying on your coverstitch, too.

  6. June 28, 2012

    This is random, but — I JUST visited Madison for the first time and went to Gayfeather’s. It’s fabulous, isn’t it?

  7. BeckyMc permalink
    June 28, 2012

    When I flew from Seattle to Baltimore and back I carried on my sewing machine. The only place to put it was under the seat in front of me. I wouldn’t have wanted it to “shift” during turbulence and fall on someone’s head. (they might damage my machine!) It was a looooong uncomfrotable flight with no leg room. If I had to do it again I would FedEx my machine, taking plenty of insurance and letting the pros at FedEx do the packing, while I watch them like a hawk!

  8. Sue permalink
    June 28, 2012

    I would take the patterns, some fabric, and some sewing tools that will make your life much easier. I would take the overstitch machine, flash your brilliant smile and ask that it be stowed with the crew’s luggage. The smile is essential!

    Remember, San Diego has fabric stores. The stash is a collection so you don’t have to use it all up immediately.

    Also, USPS has boxes that can be filled to capacity for a set dollar amt. You can send some of your sewing stuff through the mail. It’s scary, and you’re brave.

    I haven’t commented on your blog before. Thanks for sharing your sewing adventures and life. I did a dramatic move 5 years ago and have not regretted it. Albeit there were times when I felt crazy. Breathe, enjoy, breathe, sew. You are going to have fun!

  9. June 28, 2012

    When I moved to New Zealand for a year, I took my sewing machine and overlocker! on the plane. My advice would be to have a roller bag as holding those machines by the handles and walking long ( international travel) corridors was a killer. Check with the carrier that they will take it on board as many will take it off you at the door and put it somewhere not near you! Good luck with the move.

  10. June 28, 2012

    I woud take only half of what you think you’ll get done – optimism is great but not necessarily when packing for a plane trip.

    Also – Lightning McQueen fabric?! Teddy would just about die if I made him jammies from that. Bizarrely this has produced the first urge to sew I’ve had in several months 🙂

  11. June 28, 2012

    Three words: Fed Ex Ground. If you try to take them on the plane, the flight attendants are likely to “valet” them for you (i.e. take them at the last minute and shove in the bulkhead with the strollers and car seats). Not a dad deal for the strollers and car seats, but not where you want your precious cargo to travel.

  12. June 29, 2012

    Take it all – you never know. Oh but let yourself buy some notions there which’ll give you a really good reason to check out haberdashery store options near your new digs.

  13. Judi permalink
    June 29, 2012

    I would get a large USPS priority shipping box…$15.45…flat rate…weight doesn’t matter and stuff it full of the fabric, patterns and notions you want when you get there. 3 days to deliver!!! Less weight for you to carry…you have enough as it is.

  14. June 29, 2012

    I took a serger on a plane over Christmas and it was a pretty horrible experience I never want to repeat. It was too big, really, though nobody stopped me (they should have!). It was too squarish to fit into an overhead-sized suitcase but I thought it might fit in the overhead bin ok. It was definitely too tall to fit under the seat in front of me, so I shoved it into the overhead bin and I mean shoved. To get it out of the bin at the end of the flight I had to stand on the seat (granted, I am short) and tug-pull-tug-pull it out. There was a horrible sound as it finally popped free–I’m pretty sure I cracked the roof of the overhead bin. I’m surprised I got it in there in the first place.

    I had also heaved it onto a train to the get to the airport, and it turned out to be a train with three very narrow, very steep steps to get in *and* I also had a heavy suitcase so I was pulling about 45 extra pounds up those very narrow, very steep steps. This greatly added to my dissatisfaction. I assume you and Jack will take a cab to the airport, but do not underestimate how heavy those suckers are. If you are not on a direct flight, do not even *think* about it.

    The carry handle on this particular serger did not recess–it was molded in an upright position. Had the handle been push-downable it probably would have fit comfortably into the bin. I highly suggest that you compare the size of your machines to a carry-on sized suitcase to get an idea whether they will fit. You might also run into the “one carry-on item, one personal item thing” (though you can say one of them is Jack’s!).

    Enough Debbie Downer! I love your upcoming project choices!

  15. June 29, 2012

    Recently I moved from the east coast to the midwest to be near family, esp our DGD’s. Thinking that everything would be in storage for 3-4 months, I brought my regular machine with me in a roller bag and I shipped a box of potential projects; each was in a 2 gallon ziplock with notions, thread, etc. In the end it was a great idea but I didn’t sew at all as moving stole all of my sewing energy.

    While I don’t have a lot of projects to show, I do have a lot of great packing tips!

    Good luck on your move. It will be great to nearer your family.

  16. Meredith P permalink
    June 30, 2012

    Mail (via usps or similar) your essentials. Do not attempt to fly with the stuff. You’ll be happier and less exhausted at the other end. Worth the shipping costs.

  17. Claire Ramsey permalink
    June 30, 2012

    I completely understand your desire to have your high priority sewing things with you at all times. I am exactly the same way and generally give up big $$$ to various airlines in extra bag fees.

    About fabric stores in San Diego. You probably already know this b/c you’ve been here (I live in San Diego) but. . . San Diego has few fabric stores. NOTHING repeat NOTHING like NYC. Our two high-quality fabric stores closed in the last year. We have the store that is a crafts store w/a bit of lousy fabric. We have Yardage Town in National City (the only branch of the chain that is worth a visit in my view). There is a new shop in La Jolla Gwen Couture that I haven’t visited yet, but could be a fabulous place.

    But. . . I usually buy fabrics on-line. You are used to fabric shopping in NYC’s garment district. San Diego is going to be a fabric store disappointment.

    So. . . if that fabric you showed above is the fabric you are going to want when you arrive, you should just bite the bullet and bring it. I’ve moved my sewing machines across the country several times, and each time they needed repairs after the movers got them to me. So you are definitely not crazy to want to bring them as carry on when you fly. I hope you can figure out a way. Otherwise Fed Ex High Value (with professional packing) is your best bet.

    Good luck and welcome to San Diego!!!

    Claire R.

  18. July 1, 2012

    Yes, I think your nuts. But I understand and share your nutty urges. Baggage allowances are so tight in Australia you would never get it on the plane. I’d also be worried about the serger blades being confiscated by airline security.

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