Saturday, March 6, 2010

My Sewing Fantasy - An Ongoing Saga

Ever since I became pregnant with Kaya I've had an insatiable urge to sew...  For anyone who knows me, this is quite an extraordinary statement.  Afterall, I've actively hated sewing my whole life!  I remember sitting in my mother's claustrophobic sewing room as a little girl.  My mother's constant reminders of the necessity of being able to sew, echoing in my ears.  The summer heat stifling.  Sweat pooling in my belly button.  The smell of freshly cut fabric in the air (I bet you didn't even realise fabric had a smell worth mentioning).  Trying without much success to exert even pressure with my foot on the peddle.  The whirr-whirr-whirr of the old Bernina as I push the material beneath the machine's foot.  Then the inevitable whirr-clunk sound as the thread becomes tangled around a pin and breaks the sewing needle...

Every single time I tried to sew something I would either break a needle (or two), knot the thread into an unworkable mess, or run out of thread right before I finished my "creation".   Every single time I tried to sew something it just wouldn't turn out the way I wanted.  Every single time I tried to sew something I would find myself becoming so frustrated I could hardly breathe.  Every single time I tried to sew something I would vow to myself and everyone else within yelling range that I would never ever try to sew anything ever again.  By the time I was 16 I was avoiding any kind of sewing at all costs.  Instead of sewing a button back onto a top, I would have much preferred to throw the whole thing away (not that my mother let me of course).  That's how much I hated sewing.

But then Kaya came into my life, and I developed this insatiable urge to start sewing again.  In the 4 weeks before Kaya's arrival, using my mum's same old Bernina (the one from my traumatic memories), I madly sewed an entire bedding set with accented jungle animals, matching curtains and even a giant soft toy monkey.  And since Kaya's entrance into our lives I've been fantasizing about all the cute clothes I could make for him, if only I had my own machine.

So, in October last year, after almost a year of sewing all kinds of things (in my imagination), and researching the best machine for my needs, I decided upon and ordered a beautiful little sewing machine of my very own.

Little did I know how difficult it would be to get this machine from the shop into my house ...  What a saga it turned out to be!

I made the purchase online from the United States, but unfortunately they wouldn't deliver to Turkey.  So my husband came up with ingenious idea to send it to the cruise ship where his brother is currently working so that when the ship made it's regular visit to Kusadasi (a Turkish port), his brother could post it on to me.

I waited about 5 weeks for the machine to find its way to Europe and onto the ship.  But by this time my brother-in-law (Burak) had returned home for vacation.   So I waited another 6 weeks for him to return to the ship.  Then I waited 2 more weeks for the ship to sail into Kusadasi.  The day finally came but instead of a message telling me my machine was in the mail, I received the bad news that the Turkish customs authorities refused to allow any machinery of any kind into that port.  Huh?  So I started researching postage costs from the various other ports and the location of the post offices in relation to the port (to ensure the least inconvenience to Burak who would be posting the machine).  Finally I discovered a post office in Dubai, right in the port terminal where Burak could easily jump off the ship, post the machine and get back onboard without interrupting his time off too much.  I waited another 2 weeks and my machine was finally in the mail.  Then I waited 3 weeks more and it was here.

I can't begin to tell you just how excited I was to see that white PTT box sitting in my living room.  I didn't want any distractions while I was opening the box so I waited until Kaya was asleep before I even took a peek inside.  I wanted to enjoy the moment.  Two hours after his usual naptime, Kaya finally went to sleep.  I ripped the box open and wah-lah!  What a beauty:

Boy was I going to have fun.  A brand new computerised sewing machine.  I caressed it a bit and pushed some buttons and pulled the thread holder thingy up and down a bit, then I open the bobbin compartment.  Inside was a little bag.  A little bag full of bits.  And pieces.  And funny looking things.  Holy cow!  There were so many little bits and pieces.  How many bits and pieces do you actually need to sew a pair of kid's pants?  Apparently a lot.  Have a look at this:

I started feeling a little bit anxious that this sewing business was not going to be as straight forward as putting a piece of material under the foot and pushing the peddle.  I might even have to read the instruction manual.  And I hate instruction manuals.  I pushed the bag of things away and ignored them.  I would just figure it out as I went along.  So I attached an adaptor to the lead, plugged it in, turned it on and ....


I blew up my brand new little beauty!  After all that it took to finally get it into my hands and I blew it up!  It didn't even cross my mind to think about the electrical supply difference between US and Turkey.  I didn't attach an electricity converter.  And I blew the bloody thing up!  What an idiot!

That was over a week ago and my little sewing machine is still in the process of being repaired.  Nothing is straight forward here in Turkey.  So far it's been looked at by a guy who passed it on to another guy who suggested parts from another guy who tested another part of the machine and then ordered a different part from another guy who assured us it would be ready 3 days later but then when we stopped by 4 days later his wife told us he couldn't fix it and wanted to send it to another guy for another part and it would take another week.  Something like that anyway.

So, in summary, I bought a sewing machine 4 months ago and hope to be able to make Kaya something nice ... one day.