Sunday, October 17, 2010

ASG, PIQF, Iron - Report!

It feels as if I haven't blogged forever, though it's just been a week since my iron post. But it is my second weekend intensively sewing the same project and I'm still not done! This one is fairly labor intensive, but I'm hoping to have it done in the next few evenings. The post is mostly written, so I just need to finish and get some pictures.

Meanwhile, I had a fun day on Friday! I don't always attend my ASG (American Sewing Guild) meetings because it means taking time off from work, but I managed to make it this month. Everyone was encouraged to muslin the Loes Hinse Oxford pant. This pant was selected because it's reputed to fit a wide variety of figures and we found that to be true. My muslin, made from a very light lining fabric, is too sheer to share publicly, but I hope to make up a pair, or three, of these pants soon. The ASG group recommended a very simple alteration, so I just need to select some fabrics and get sewing. It is a flattering pattern and very suited to the more mature figure.

After the meeting, I rushed off to PIQF (Pacific International Quilt Festival) in Santa Clara. I used to quilt obsessively, so I am quite familiar with this conference, and I still remember the indigo dyeing and shibori dyeing classes I took there long ago, but I hadn't attended in years. Now that I am back into sewing garments, I looked at the vendors with a new eye. You can see in the above photo some of my booty. I bought some nice separating zippers for $7 each, some very interesting buttons, some Collins Wonder Tape (previously, I'd only found the Dritz version), and a couple cleaning devices for my machines. The four "sticks" shown in the photo are wooden beads that the seller (and artist) had airbrushed. They are really beautiful and only $1 each, but I'm not sure how to use them. I also bought a couple pieces of jewelry and a purse pattern, not shown in the photo. Everything I bought fit into my purse, so I was feeling good about my apparent restraint. :)

There were a few questions/comments about the Digital Velocity iron I recently purchased. I've now used it for a couple of weeks and I continue to love it. But let me address some specific comments:

  • Robin asked if the point is "pointy" enough. Robin, it seems to be. I'm not sure what your criteria is, but, so far, the point is pointy enough for me. Do you require a specific angle? Maybe I can find a protractor and measure it for you.
  • ReAnn asked about the recommendation on Amazon to buy replacement filters. I was a little surprised by this - I'd totally missed that. From what I can tell, the filters are used by the anti-scaling system. I am not using the anti-scaling system - so hopefully I won't need any filters. Do I even need a anti-scaling system? Does my water have scales? :)
  • Nancy says her sewing instructor has two of these irons and one has developed a leak. Quel horreur! I hope this is an anomaly and not the norm.

Another nice feature of this iron is that it has very few holes in the stainless steel sole plate. There are just a few towards the tip of the iron and then there are little grooves that lead from the holes, towards the bottom and curve towards the sides. So you don't get lots of unfused "holes" when you fuse interfacing that you have to go over to eliminate. My current project had quite a bit of fusible interfacing and it worked great!!!

Another thing I should mention is that when you turn off the iron, at least the way I do it by turning off the power strip, you lose the "settings". When you turn it back on, you have to reset the temperature and disable the auto-shutoff again. (This is done by holding down the steam button for several seconds until a "pause" symbol appears (two parallel lines)).

I hope everyone has a great week. I really need to finish my current coat, so I can move on to other projects!


  1. Anti-scaling is for hard water (which leaves mineral deposits on everything and often causes leaky irons, in my experience.) I live in a hard water area. I've never used any kind of filter, but I do use bottled purified spring water (not mineral water, not distilled water) in my iron, and I've never had any problems since switching to bottled water.

  2. That makes sense, Betty. The manual for this iron suggests you use distilled water but it says if you have soft water, you can use tap water. I believe San Francisco water is fairly soft, but I'm still using distilled water.