week #21 scrubs

After dusting off the sewing machine in week #19 and then seeing the need for more scrubs in UK hospitals it seemed as though this was a challenge being put in front of me. Perfect for a 50in50@50. To be honest it was also looking like one of the more testing of my challenges, I don’t have much history of successfully making anything with fabric and thread. Undaunted I ordered the fabric and waited.

There were unforeseen additional layers to the challenge where the pattern was free (from www.sewdifferent.co.uk thank you guys) but had to be printed out on over 50 A4 sheets and then assembled in order to make sense. It turned out that my perfectly decent household scissors were actually not up to the task which made the relatively simple task of cutting around the pattern actually quite hard to do accurately. Then we got to the point of assembly and I didn’t understand the first line of the instructions – never heard of interfacing. I phoned a friend for advice and reassured by her advice picked up the pieces.

After finding out more about interfacing and realising that I may not be totally equipped for this task I got online. I ordered more thread, pins, fabric scissors and the hardest things of all found the correct bobbin size. I thought this beautiful old Singer machine was from the 1920’s but now seem to think that from the serial number might be from 1902. Anyway, it takes a specific size of bobbin so I underwent some actual rage against all people selling bobbins who don’t specify the exact sizing. The things you learn when you take on new things eh.

Then I proceeded to sew up a bunch of seams all wrong, had to unpick those and the black mood continued. I did reflect that none of my other challenges (all 20 of them since 1 January) had actually caused me any negative feelings at all but does that tell me that I chose my challenges really well or that I am not in fact pushing my comfort zones at all? I think I was always prepared to push myself physically but maybe it hadn’t really occurred to me that any of my challenges might not be fun to do. Question is does that make it more rewarding than one that is more easily accomplished? Some pressure here as I can’t waste the materials and the effort, the scrubs have to be usable and I hope durable.

So this challenge is certainly going to take more than a week to complete and I’ll have to report back later on when I have finally produced a set of scrubs. To be honest the scoring on ‘delight’ and also the ‘do it again’ factors are not looking anywhere near a top score. But as a challenge there is one critical factor that did deliver – I wasn’t bored.

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