Monday, June 17, 2013

Found Objects

Jon had to work this weekend and we missed a family wedding in Boston. (He hasn't started the no-weekend job yet.) We were at a friend's wedding last weekend, and Richmond the weekend before, so I had a lot of catch up cleaning to do.  I also went to the Alderman library and got a huge stack of books.  Due date: May 10, 2014! (At 23:59)

My sewing machine is fixed!  I used to sew so much that I had a dedicated sewing space, where I could keep my machine set up at all times.  In this house, my sewing room was demolished in 2006 for a renovation and in its place now is the dining room.
My old sewing room, mid-demolition

I packed up my sewing machine--an unchic Janome Decor Excel 5018 and haven't used it since. Everybody who is anybody has a Bernina, or a 1938 Singer Featherweight 221 that they found at an estate sale for $6 on which they make couture gowns. My Janome isn't sexy, but it has served me well and was a vast improvement over the entry level Pfaff I'd had before, or my grandmother's 1970's Sunbeam, which I had before the Pfaff.  In 2006, after years of heavy use the Janome's tension was off and it wasn't performing well. This weekend I picked it up from the repair shop.  All I've done so far is sew a Paris hem into a pair of jeans, but it sews like a dream!  Repairs cost $65.

The sad thing is, I've completely forgotten how to use it.  I sewed my jeans with the thread the repair lady left in it, because I can't even remember how to thread it or change the bobbin, much less how to use the specialty feet or the buttonholer.

Thus began a whole house search for the manual, which I eventually did find, along with other assorted oddments, such as this woolen chicken.

I ought to give the poor thing some eyes.

And these toe shoes.

 Here's the pain in the ass thing about toe shoes.  They're very expensive and they have to fit perfectly.  There is no such thing as buying toe shoes a little large to grow into.  The age at which girls start dancing on pointe is also the age at which their feet grow exponentially.  So a pair of toe shoes will have almost no wear at all, and already be outgrown.  You don't want to throw away something that cost $120 and lasted exactly six weeks, so you stash them away in different places so that forever more, every closet, box, basket, drawer, and random plastic bag will have an old pair of toe shoes lurking in it.

Pinterest (naturally) has a few ideas on how to reuse them.

This cross stitch Santa.

Part of a garland that spells out Merry Christmas.  I made it years ago.  This "S" has been missing forever!

This fake thumb.

True story: This thumb almost got us kicked out of Maya, a restaurant in C'ville.  It has a little red light inside that lights up with pressure.  Our nephew was visiting, and he and Seamus were adept at doing magic tricks with this thumb, and were playing with it while we waited for someone to take our order. They had just put it away when the hostess came marching over to our table with an angry look on her face.  She didn't say anything, just circled our table several times, staring hard at each of us. Clearly we were in some kind of trouble.  One of the servers came up to stand with us and they both stared at us some more and conferred.  Seamus took out the thumb again and something seemed to dawn on the hostess and she walked away.  I realized that someone must have mistaken the red light for a lit cigarette and complained that we were smoking, which is idiotic because the first thing you notice when someone is smoking is the smell, not the glowing cigarette ends.  Kind of an asshole move on their part.  They could have just asked us what we had that was lighting up, rather than being deliberately intimidating.

Also found: a very nice Swiss army knife, a trial size packet of Oxi-clean, (guess I'd better clean something) and Jon's certificate for ten years of service to UVA, five years out of date, since he just got his fifteen year certificate.


  1. just say no to that toe shoe flower!

  2. We had a thumb like that once.

  3. Good finds!
    Sounds like a weirdly productive weekend.
    And shame on that hostess for not just asking if you were smoking. Sheesh.

  4. Very cool random finds!! I like that woolen chicken.

  5. What you need is a little tube of fake blood to put on the table along with the thumb.