Sunday, August 28, 2016

Once Again I Have Returned and I Have It In The Bag.

     It has been nearly a month since I have posted last. I did have good reason to be missing for such a long period of time.  During the first week of August I took a trip to Parris Island Marine Recruit Training Center. As one of the officers for our local US Naval Sea Cadet Divisions, I took my cadets to Parris Island for training. Though it was warm down in South Carolina we did have a great time.
     During the rest of the month I have been finishing my Project Management Certification. I had to have it completed by the last day of this month since I am doing the certification for college. Yes, I said college. I am a full time student as a business major at Western Governors University. I did pass my certification and passed all of my classes for this term. Now I have two terms left in my degree program which means that I will (if all goes as planned) graduation next year at this time.

     Now on to this weeks project. For me this project is where I have been heading to since I have started this blog. My goal is to make these zippered bags and sell them on line or at craft shows.
     Several weeks ago I went out to the fabric store to look for the perfect material for this project. My wife will have to be credited with finding this material. I believe that this was the perfect matching material for this project.
     When I finally sat down to use this material I folded it in half and ironed both pieces of material. Once they were ironed I took to the cutting table and stacked the two pieces of fabric so that I has four layers of fabric on the table. Using a rotary cutter I cut the four layers of material into pieces that measured 10.5 inches by 6 inches. That way I have four pieces that are exactly the same size and ready for sewing.

     The next step was to properly layer two pieces of fabric with the zipper. I like using binder clips to hold material when possible. It for me is easier to use and I believe does a better job at holding the material. I also find that it is easier to make fine adjustments.
     After aligning the fabric on the one side of the zipper I took to the sewing machine and did a straight stitch down the length of the zipper to attach them together. Next them I performed the same procedure for attaching the rest of the material to the other side of the zipper.
     With a quick ironing I flattened the material once again pulling slightly away from the zipper to allow the seams to be properly flattened. After the ironing I returned to the sewing machine and did a top stitching down each side of the zipper. This helps to flatten out the seam and give it a cleaner look.
     I did manage to finish this bag which I find to have turned out rather well. I do know that there are a few flaws with the bag, but feel that this was a very successful project for having been the first time I have sewn a zippered bag.
     Now that I have finished my first zippered bag, I can work at refining m techniques. I have to refine my stitches and make them straighter along the zipper. I also have to work with the ends of the zipper and make them fit with the bag better. With that being said I am very satisfied for my first bag.

     I will be making more bags in hopes of getting this sewing down and making a viable product that I can sell at some point. As for the projects that I have coming up, I will be continuing on with expanding my collection of projects that will refine my skills and teach me new skills in the art of sewing.

     I hope that you have a wonderful week and look forward to what I can put together for next weeks project.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

This Last Week Was Not About The Sewing.

INST WERTANEN of the US Naval Sea Cadet Corps
 Signal Mountain Division, Signal Mountain, TN
     The sewing was very limited this past week. But I did manage to slip in a few stitches. I had to make my uniforms shipshape and get them ready for a week long trip to Parris Island, South Carolina. The name tapes and collar devices had to be placed on several pairs of uniforms that I was bringing along.
     This trip was not about me however. It was about the cadets who ranged in ages from 13 years old to 18 years old. It was about exposing them to how the Marines train their recruits. These cadets are a part of the US Naval Sea Cadets Corps. It is a place for the cadets to learn leadership skills that can be used whether they join the military or not.

     At Parris Island the cadets took part in military pt and marching drills. Toured various places on the base including seeing the barracks of recruits who are really attending Marine boot camp. They spent time listening to lectures along with hands on experiences with the confidence course, obstacle course and firing range simulator. On our last day we attended morning colors and watched Marines graduate from boot camp. What an awesome time .

     Now it is back to reality. I have my new project picked out and am looking forward to getting back on track with the sewing... along with my school work and my job. I will be attending one last Sea Cadet event tomorrow before heading back to reality on Tuesday. I really cannot wait to reveal my project next weekend. Until then have a wonderful week and get involved in the lives of our youth. Let us lead by example for future generations.