Needle Cases: Lessons Learned

19 Nov

This post might be somewhat negative in tone.

Yesterday I got it in my head that I must have needle cases right now. What better way to spend an afternoon (and an evening and the next morning) than sewing?

I thought I learned my lesson about thinking ahead, paying attention to details and going slowly the last time I sewed something. The lesson being that these are important things if you want to succeed well enough to actually want to use the finished object you end up with. Apparently I didn’t.

Yes, this time I skipped the thinking and went straight for the sewing. This lead to some major flaws in my new dpn case.

I didn’t notice three of the worst problems until I was finished.

First: the straps. I didn’t sew in a separate flap to the top of the case to keep the needles from falling out when the case is held upside down. Instead, I just made the case itself longer, so it can be folded over the needles. So far so good. The thing is, I forgot I had done this when I sewed in the straps, and placed them in the centre of the whole case – including the flap. Which is folded inside. Hence the odd placement of the straps on the rolled up case. I could claim this is a feature rather than a bug, if it weren’t for the fact that the placement makes the whole tying of the case a little bit awkward. Oops.

I also realized the straps themselves are too short only when I’d filled the thing up and actually tried to close it. Yeah. No. It would’ve also been a good idea to go to the trouble of changing the thread on my sewing machine to something that would’ve matched the straps better. The stitching is very visible at the seams. I knew when I sewed them that I wouldn’t like the result and I did it anyway. Gotta wonder about the attitude.

And then the needle slots. Nothing much wrong with them, you might say. But you’d be wrong. I forgot to sew the pockets onto the interior fabric before sewing that onto the outer fabric, which means the pockets aren’t attached into the case except at the side and bottom seams. And that would be ok (hey, that just means one big extra pocket behind the smaller pockets), but I had counted on the interior fabric to form the back pockets with the white fabric. Le sigh.

I still think the case is good enough, and I’m even more pleased with the circular needle case I sewed today.

After hours spent creating and fixing mistakes yesterday, I was able to skip the same mistakes today. It’s still not beautiful, but at least it has basic functionality (never mind the upper most row of pockets, that are too high up to accomodate circs). I measured twice and cut once (unlike yesterday) and was more obsessed with ironing the fabrics this time around, as well, so the result is a little neater.

I haven’t made the buttonhole on the strap yet because I have to buy a button first. I like the automatic button-hole foot on my sewing machine… actually it’s one of the last things in that machine I like. It’s getting to be old and cranky.

I meant for the case to fold two times, but somehow it just didn’t happen that way. I honestly can’t explain why. It’s ok this way too, but I would feel more secure about the needles staying in place if the case wasn’t just folded in two. I can live with it though because I hardly ever use those circular needles anyway.

Now I’m designing a case for my KnitPicks Harmony set beforehand, and trying to be thorough about it. I hope I get around to sewing it this weekend.

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