Category Archives: sewing

sewing Sunday

Blue blue blue. Light blue, sky blue, sea-green blue, dark blue, royal blue. The interior of m/v stinkpot is blue. The quilt on our bed; the couch; the dinette cushions. My goal is to break up some of this blue, especially the 1980s light blue vinyl dinette cushions.

Step 1: Place mats for the table.


plot devices, foreshadowing and red herrings

Back in Philadelphia, I’m diving headfirst into editing my murder-mystery novel I drafted back in November.  At this point I think re-writing is a more accurate term.  Since I’ve never done this before, I’ve been browsing around on the internet for tips, ideas and hints for using third person narrative, creating believable characters and setting the scene.  Yikes! I have three new documents: to-do, general thoughts and style guide.  Don’t forget to change so and so’s name; change Coast Guard to Search & Rescue; include some cliff-hangers; introduce the villain early and often; drop clues for the reader throughout the novel; don’t describe the characters, let their personalities shine through via their actions and other characters’ impressions; etc., etc., etc.

Feeling overwhelmed, this morning I did laundry and made this new clutch to bring to Sweden (along with my new computer, no more sharing with Hans!).
the inside of the clutch, complete with credit card holders and a divider

the new clutch

plastic windows

The current, never-ending project on m/v Stinkpot (besides fixing leaks), is sewing an enclosure for the back and top decks.  We have completed the back deck enclosure and are now working on sewing the connecting piece between the hard-top to the back deck and the bimini which is over the top deck (cockpit).  We have a large piece of Sunbrella that fits and needs to be tailored to the space.  Yesterday I sewed a plastic window into the back.  Since Hans was studying all day, I had to tackle my lack of spatial awareness.  I lay the piece of sunbrella across the back deck, lay the window across the top and then had to determine how to cut out the hole in the Sunbrella while leaving space to hem and attached the window.  Sunbrella costs over $15/yd so I didn’t want to miscalculate.  Crawling across the back deck on my knees (proof of this task is visible in the bruises in my knees today), I measured two 5/8″ hems, plus an additional 1/4″ seam to attach the window.  I connected the dots with a black permanent marker (permanent? since when do boaters use anything ‘permanent’ on the first try at  project?!), and ended up with a rectangle within a rectangle.  I walked around the canvas a couple times, analyzing and talking to myself, convincing myself that it was time to cut.  Out came the scissors.  I ironed the hem twice, sewed the hem and dragged the canvas back outside, crossing my fingers that my calculations were correct.  Ta da!  the window fit perfectly.  I affixed it with seamstick, dragged it back inside and sewed the window to the canvas.

we’re one step closer to having a dry cockpit!


I was recently given a pair of jeans from a friend that needed to be hemmed.  I stopped by the tailor at 2nd and Market to get the price for an original hem. $20.  yikes.  I did a quick google search and, after reviewing a few online tutorials, knew I was up to the job.  It took a mere 30 minutes and, though they don’t look original up close, they look pretty good from a distance.  (And anyway, the only time someone has been that close to the hem of my jeans was trying on shoes in the Dominican Republic where shoe salespeople still lace up your shoes for you.)  Since it only took 30 minutes and the tailors up the street were charging $20, I figure I can start charging $40/hour for seamstress work!