Saturday, December 26, 2015

The bag came back

Some dickhole(s) stole my friend's bag out of his car this summer. It was just found in a nearby park. This is what it looked like after sitting outside for five months. Full of water and spiders, but not that bad. It's back in action.

Tool endorsement

I had to cut some vestigial ductwork outta my crawlspace last week and it would've been a real pain in the caboose without this Malco sheet metal nipper. It attaches to your drill. How cool is that! Thanks, Malco.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Wallet wear

Here's what five years of wear looks like on a label. Not too bad, I suppose.

The acrylic-coated poly looks great, though.

Pfaff table

Finally built a proper table with some scrap wood for my 335. Only took, like, five years. Time to use it more. :)
Practicing some woodworking skills: laminating plywood, routing, staining and using polycrylic. Good times.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

In the wild

 David's bag at Lake Hiyaha.

Phil's wallet at Glacier National Park.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Bag cover

We recently went on a trip, and I made a roll-top backpack cover so my bag wouldn't get chewed up in the checked-baggage mayhem.
Tried out some new construction techniques with my new post-bed machine 'cause, you know, why not: felled seams; curved, webbing-covered seams. Not bad.

Consew 289RB-1

Picked up a post-bed machine from Nick-O Sew a while back and been setting it up to my liking. Pretty excited about the different kinds of construction methods I can use now.
I believe the 289 is the post-bed version of the 255, which is Consew's fancier flat-bed upholstery machine (the 206 being their standard machine).
This is a used machine (from the Seiko era), but it's still in production.

Needle-feed, walking-foot, of course. Size U bobbin, methinks. It's slightly bigger that the M bobbin that many of my other machines use.

Instead of a stitch-length dial, you press a button on the bed and turn the handwheel. 

I love this thread guide.

Nice hinged door to the needle-bar stuff. I wish more machines had this feature.

Been practicing making tiny half-totes.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Boone Dawdle bag 6

Well, it's time for my yearly fancy bag. Did this for the True/False Film Fest's Boone Dawdle. The film this year was Breaking a Monster, a doc about the preteen metal band Unlocking The Truth and their deal with the Devil.
I hope this bag is metal enough...

17 inches across the top.

Chainstitch'd. Not bad for my second serious attempt. (The first being last year's BD bag.)

Floating liner. Trying some new construction techniques, plus a 3D zip pocket.

Flipside almost looks cooler...

Sourcing materials is always one of the trickier aspects of bagmaking. Took me a couple tries to find a satisfactory chainstitch thread. Burmilana from Madeira is great. Got a bunch of the wool/acrylic ... and a couple in cotton/acrylic.

Made a bonus tote bag from an old acrylic T/F banner (see below). More of these to come, I imagine.

These have been flown every January/February downtown for the last seven-or-so years and are being retired. (Photo by T/F.)

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Straight Grain Studio

There's a new sewing cafe in the neighborhood (espresso bar coming soon) offering classes, alterations, and more. If you're in the Mid-Mo area, check it out!

 Paris & Mt Vernon.

Machines to rent by the hour.

Tiny serger!

Draping class.

Things to come

Another sewing machine? Sure, why not?

Knight Rider

Been really digging my NiteRider light, though the rubber band that holds it to the bike broke in the first month. No surprise as that's what all the reviews warn of. Been using a piece of bike tube instead. So far so good.

Leather pouch

I made a zippered hip pouch from leather harvested from an old couch. My camera broke but, weirdly enough, it can still shoot video, so here ya go.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Things to come

Another machine? Why not!

Hoop haus

1: My mom makes paper, which is a wet, messy process best done outside. Her cheap-ass canopy bit the dust last year, so she's looking for a replacement to stay outta the mulberry rain (and regular rain).
2: There are two dog kennels in the backyard collecting honeysuckle bushes.
3. The old-ass truck in the side yard is a warren of mosquito sex and sadness.

Solution: Build a 25-foot hoop house outta the dog kennels and cover everything up.

The dog kennels were made out of fence top rails. There weren't quite enough, so I picked up four more at the big box store, plus a dozen couplers.
I bent the tubing with my friend's HF pipe bender. Each hoop is three pieces: two sides with a bend in each, and an arch. I drove rebar into the ground to hold the hoops into place. I had enough kennel hardware to bolt everything together (luckily). And the canopy is a plastic tarp.
We'll see how she holds up.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

David's backpack

Looks like I hadn't forgot how to make bags after all...
14-inch backpack. Waxed cotton uppers, Cordura lowers, acrylic-coated poly inners.

 David likes red.
 Added a divider in the zip pocket ... I spend way too much time digging for crap in my bag.
 Expanded the pen pockets: two 8-inch deep, two 5-inchers.

 Zippers so bright.
Wedge bottom.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Field trip

Last week my friend Jess and I took a li'l hour-and-a-half trip up the road to St Charles and visited the Midwestern outpost of Nick-O Sewing. This was my first time visiting an industrial sewing machine shop and, needless to say, I was pretty excited. A huge thanks to Bob and Dave for talking machines with us and telling us about the history of the St Louis rag trade.
The showroom is nestled in an industrial park just off of 70. We only drove past it once.

They have all sorts of machines on hand, but their primary focus seems to be on heavier models -- lots of compound-feed machines in there.

Backroom, full of old machines waiting for some love.

HD double needle.

 277/335-style clone with binder base.

Quad-needle chainstitch with roller puller.

The leatherworker corner: 341s and 227s. They had just sold a used Juki 441 ... sad that I missed it. Maybe next time.

We ended up walking out with a used Yamato 5-thread serger with safety stitch (chainstitch next to the overlock stitch). This came out of a St Louis garment factory that made dancewear. It was covered in glitter fuzz.

Z610 C5DA. It's gonna be a nice li'l machine to have around. Need to find out what the Z stands for ... and find a manual for it.

Whoever came up with the serger is a bonafide genius. If there's a machine that runs on magic, it's the serger.

This is emblazoned on the table. Fitting, since this is where we live.

We went to Nick-O in search of a coverstitch machine, and left with a serger, so we'll be back. I also gave them a wishlist that includes a 441 and shoe patcher. Good times.