Friday, April 3, 2015


Earlier this week I decided to get some indoor garden work done. Sewing isn't usually a garden chore, but this time it was. I write in my garden plan which plants will get row covers and which kinds. Last year I found the fabric netting that I use for most of my row covers wasn't quite tall enough for the onions and storage carrots. So this year I decided to add 50% more width to it to make it the right size.

I needed three extra wide swaths of netting. A 16' one for the onions which spans more than one 8' bed. A 13' one for the carrots that take up a whole 8' bed. And a 12' one for the chard which has one foot of the bed taken up by beans that can't be covered. The chard only takes half the width of the bed, but it gets really tall.

I rolled out the bolt of netting and cut them at the appropriate lengths. The first one was 16'. I used the other half for the 13' one. For the 12' one I only cut 6' as I could use the other half for the rest. Then I sewed them together.

The finished pieces were labeled. And I was done.

It makes it sound so easy. But have you ever had one of those days where little things keep going wrong. I'm usually a measure twice and cut one kind of gal. Well the cutting went well. But when I sewed them together I sewed the top of the narrow piece to the side of the wide piece. How on earth could I make that mistake? I could see sewing the top of the 6' piece to the side of the the smaller piece. 6' is pretty long. But the three foot top is short. I can see the end of it. Well I got my ripper out and very very carefully ripped the stitches out. The netting is very fragile.

After shaking my head at myself I started again - triple checking this time. I started the sewing machine and my needle broke. I had somehow wrapped the thread around it the wrong way it it broke it right off. At least this one was easier to fix than the sewing up the wrong side of the cloth. I put a new needle into it and thought if something else goes wrong the universe must be telling me something. So of course my thread broke immediately. Can you guess what stupid thing I did this time?

Can you believe that when I replaced the needle I had gotten the thread caught in the mechanism. I had to unscrew the needle to get it out. But no I didn't stop. I'm stubborn. I did have a bit of minor difficulty after that. The fabric likes to grab onto parts of the foot and especially the screw that holds the needle in. I think I have a couple tiny tears in the first one I did. I learned how to hold the fabric away from the foot better as time went on. I went back and couldn't find the tears, but I'll find them when I put it up I'm sure. I keep a needle and thread out in the garden to fix row cover holes.

In other news we are having a warm spell. Last night didn't get below 50F (wow!). And today is supposed to get into the 60s. I've been shoveling more of my beds off. I just have a small corner left. The shoveling has helped a lot since before today we had some cool but sunny days. That dark soil really helped absorb the sunshine. The snow wasn't melting very fast on the beds, but it melted quickly once it was tossed on the brick path.


  1. It must have been a bad week for sewing. My wife was having fits with a project yesterday and finally figured out it was the thread.

    We had a warm spell and now it is rainy - just what we didn't need after almost 8 inches of water in March. I decided to wait to sow carrot seed because I was afraid it would wash away. I hope with the warm days you can get in your beds soon!

  2. It's good to see that your snow is now disappearing quickly. The worst thing I find about using a sewing machine is having to thread the needle, it's just so awkward.

  3. I think I'll stick to sowing. The sewing you describe is something I would never master!

  4. Oh boy, have I ever been there - that little gizmo (I think it's call a seam ripper) is one of my best friends and always sits at the ready beside my sewing machine. Funny side note, as I was just typing, I wrote "sowing" machine...guess we know where my mind is at!

  5. Your lack of snow looks wonderful ...

  6. Where did you get the netting? I think it would be useful in my garden/

    1. I got it from:
      Which is the cheapest that I could find on the web.

  7. I tried using netting just from Joanne Fabric store but it caught on the bush that I was trying to cover. The seam ripper is my friend too although I can't say I love her! Nancy

  8. sounds like you had a rough day! At least the temps are getting warmer that helps a bit :)