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Is overthinking the new procrastination?

2011 January 18
by elizabeth_admin

Friday night: Rested after marathon sewing on Thursday night for new top on Friday, which unfortunately did not get worn to the party Friday night as I had to cancel at the last minute.

Saturday night: Thought about sewing, but caught up on blog reading and commenting instead.

Sunday night: Blatant, flagrant and outrageous procrastination and tv watching.

Monday night:  Got all set to sew.  Brought out the ironing board and iron.  Found the pattern instructions and previously cut fabric from weeks ago.  Changed the needle on my sewing machine.  Plugged in both serger and sewing machine.  And then….  was stymied and paralyzed as to how best to go about sewing up this dress, Simplicity 2337.

Here’s a picture again in case you forgot about the double knit dress I planned to make before the holidays.  Hah! 

At this point it was already 9:30pm.  Kind of a pendulum point for me in the evening where you decide that yes you can push on and get something done in the next two hours, or just cave and give in to the inertia of procrastination.  I decided to push on, but couldn’t decide whether to use my serger to wholly construct the dress or use the sewing machine to stitch the seams and then serge the seam allowances.

Usually when I have a question like this, I first turn to my sewing reference books, which 9 times out of 10, don’t really ever answer my question.  Do you guys find that’s the case too?  Or is it just me?  Ok this time my books did give an answer (advice was to sew then serge), but it wasn’t what I wanted to hear.  😉 

It would be right about at this point, that I would usually turn PatternReview to ask my question (after emailing Carolyn or Karen, and I did actually email Carolyn), but I got the grandiose idea to ask the question in my Facebook status instead.  I love PatternReview, but getting answers on the boards there is not instantaneous.  Facebook, however, is.  Or at least as instantaneous as you can get without having a live-in sewing teacher.  So, that’s what I did…  Within minutes, I had several answers.  All of them great and helpful!  See for yourself (click on the picture to get legible text)…

Isn’t that amazing?  There were quite a few more answers, but I couldn’t print screen them all into one picture.  Oh and Carolyn replied as well via email.

You know what I did next, right?  I played around on my computer trying to make a picture of my facebook responses so I could put up this post today.  Hehehe.  Which brings me back to the title of this post, “Is overthinking the new procrastination?”  I think as sewists, we tend to be “in the details” kind of people.  I think we can get in our own way at times.  I know I do.  My main reason for posting the question on Facebook in the first place was that I didn’t want to cause myself unneccessary work.  I loved Eve’s answer (above).  It reminded me that fit might still be an issue with this dress despite using a knit since my two muslins were inconclusive due to the kinds of fabrics with which I chose to muslin the dress.  I think I might go a step further and baste the side seams before I serge away with a fool’s confidence.  The best tip of the night though was to use a narrow zig zag instead of the stretch stitch on the sewing machine.  I’ve never really liked the stretch stitch that much on my machine.  It takes way longer to sew and can pucker a seam.  If a zig zag will do, then I’m running with it.  Much faster and cleaner.  It uses much less thread too. 

Anyhoo, I hope some of you got some sewing in this weekend to pick up for my slackard ways.  But tonight is another night my friends.  Hopefully the procrastination fairies won’t visit again.

7 Responses leave one →
  1. January 18, 2011

    I’ve been IN LOVE with that pattern since first sight. What view are you making pray tell??? I think changing the needle is a very good starting point.

  2. January 18, 2011

    I love that pattern and have it in my stash. Can’t wait to see yours. By the way, I’m in agreement with the ladies who responded to your question. I use to use the zig-zag stitch on my sewing machine. Now I use the straight stitch but lengthen it and then go back and finish off everything with the serger. Love it.

  3. January 18, 2011

    Since I’m a master procrastinator, I feel well qualified to answer your question. Yes! When in that mode, ask “why am I procrastinating?”. Fear of what? Mine is usually failure.

    End of Psych 101. Enjoy.

  4. January 19, 2011

    Sadly, I don’t have the luxury of procrastination in my sewing. I’m away from home 11 hours a day due to work, which leaves me less than 4 hours every evening to do something I love: Sew! I can’t always spend weekends sewing either, there’s always another chore which interrupts my fun, boo.

  5. January 19, 2011

    I use the zig-zag stitch on my sewing machine. Set it at width about .5mm and length about 2.5mm and sew away. No need to stretch the fabric either, there is lots of stretch in the stitch.
    Good luck!

  6. Marie-Christine permalink
    January 19, 2011

    If you can’t find answers to your sewing dilemnas in your reference books, I’d advise a change of reference books… In particular, I’d strongly recommend Sandra Betzina’s ‘more fabrics’. I’ve never gone wrong by following her advice.
    Nothing will preserve you from the pitfalls of asking for advice till you hear what you wanted to hear to begin with though, you don’t need any sort of reference for that.
    And yes, if you muslin with different stretch from what you’re going to use, you may as well save yourself the trouble. A quick basting stitch with a side-seam cut at 1″ will take care of most variations.
    Overthinking as a method of procrastination? Sure. I can do that too. But then there’s also just plain overworking it :-), which seems to be unfortunately widespread among home seamstresses these days..

  7. January 19, 2011

    I am all about serger construction where possible. So fast and so clean! It does have the downside of not being editable.

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