Tuesday, March 22, 2011

I'm totally sold on something 'new'...


Last night was the first Serger Club meeting I have ever attended.  It started in January and this was their third meeting.  Naturally, I felt like a fifth wheel, but I showed up after Cindy told me that everyone else had just started.  In January, they were taking their sergers out of the box!  I thought, OK, this is the club for me; total, complete beginners!

And so now I'm not a complete beginner anymore :-)  I've got almost two hours of serging under my belt and have already created a square edge rolled edge hemmed napkin, a curtain and a dresser scarf for my DD's room!

Plus, I want to share the tips and techniques that I learned here with you :-)

Did you know that you don't have to be hesitant about serging because...
1)  once it's threaded properly, you don't have to rethread it to change thread (I'll show you this!)
2)  once you get used to the idea, it makes projects so quickly and provides such a professional touch that you'll never 'go back'.

Like I said, "I'm sold."

This is why:

First of all, someone took the time to talk me into this.  Good job, quilt store sales clerk!

Secondly, I already had one, but didn't have the 'courage' to try it on my own.  I was hesitant.
You can't do anything if you hesitate, so you just need to get over that and dive on in!

Thirdly, I have things to make...the last time I had a new kitchen curtain or tablecloth I can't even remember.  I took the plunge and bought the fabric, sew...I wanted to try the serger to make things look more professionally done.

In this photo, you'd think that I was happily serging away without any hesitation at all...HAH!  This is the "after" picture (I thought it would help you feel more confident.  The before pictures are below....)

I'm thinking, "Oh, my word!  What have I gotten myself into here?  I've spent too much money on this thing, I'll never get it to work...you know, all that jazz....

Here is after I first pressed the foot pedal to make 'er go....now I'm thinking, "Hey, this isn't so bad!  Actually, this is pretty darn cool!"

So, that's how I went from hesitation to success!  You can do this, too!!

Below is the practice square.
We were set up with thicker threads (which can only be used in the two bottom cones - the ones on the farthest right.)  The left upper needle thread had regular thread.  We were creating a three-thread rolled edge or rolled hem.  I used the settings as described clearly in a chart located in the booklet that came along with my serger.  I got it for right around $200 from WWW.AMAZON.COM  and it's a Brother.  It works very nicely and was not hard to thread - challenging, yes; impossibly hard, absolutely not, esp. with someone from class helping!

So, I thought..."If you can do this in a quilt store with help, the big challenge is, can you do this at home?"

So, I armed myself with the following:
1.  new fabric my DD is waiting for me to change into a curtain and a dresser scarf.
2.  My favorite cappuccino resting on my new mug rug
3.  my booklet of "how to" and notes from last night's class

By the way, this particular Serger also comes with two instructional CDs.

Here's a front view of my sweet little serger.  Before class last night, I didn't realize that the gray thread holder bar is supposed to be in the 'up' position, but I know now :-)

Last night at class, the gal cut the threads off leaving a long length so I can rethread my serger without having to do all this (see below):

When you are creating a three thread rolled hem (or rolled edge), then this piece must be 'out':

This must be set to 6:

The left one has to be set to 0.7 
the right one has to be set to either 2 or 3
(try a practice piece first to see what it looks like is the quilt shop recommendation)
the four tension wheels across the top of the serger (mine are color-coded) should all be set to 4 
(except the far right one which can be set to 7 if your thread is really thick.)

Here I am demonstrating cutting off a LONG string so that I can tie this together with a new thread (black in this case) and then simply pull it through the needle....

(See the yellow, pink and blue tension wheels here?)
Here I am tying the old thread and the new thread together.

Here the old green, multi and red threads are still there with my new black thread tied to each of them...

Now I pull all the threads through - I begin with the first two bottom threads and then pull the top thread through the needle  (the 'old' threads are in my left hand, after having pulled them all through...

and here are the three new black threads all 'threaded' through the easy way!)

This is the rolled hem (rolled edge).
I'm very happy with how this looks.

After serging the entire 1 1/2 yards of fabric (that matches my DD's graduation quilt), I cut it in half and then serged those raw ends.  One half I made into a curtain, like sew:

...and the other half I made into a dresser scarf...like sew:

and on National Quilting Day 2011, I created this pillow case
to match her large Euro pillow, so my DD's bedroom is coming together and she's happy :-)

My DD's new graduation quilt will soon take the place of her great grandfather's quilt, but it's a favorite because it's nice and warm and made with his hands.
God bless you, Grandpa Elvin! XOXO

Here are my DD's fish happily swimming away...

while outside, a blizzard rages.

Happy Spring!  Taken March 22nd, 2011.

No quilting class for me tonight, but we're all safe and sound at home with lots of milk, groceries, serging and quilting supplies, so...
all is well!

Have a blessed Day!


  1. I love my serger tho I don't use it for quilting. I have used it LOTS for dress-making... and serge seams on nightgowns for granddaugthers and jammie bottoms for grandsons... even did the rolled edge on my DD's wedding veil... very useful piece o' machinery!


  2. The pillow case is lovely! You did an awesome job with the dresser scarf too. You're such an inspiration. Keep up the good work!

  3. How cool is that?! Thanks for sharing the trick for changing thread :)


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