Robbie Pants

I hope that I am wrong but I fear winter in Sydney this year is going to be a cold and wet. Whilst cold weather means I have the chance to wear more knitwear it also means that skirts and pinafores (which is my wardrobe) aren’t going to be warm enough. I have very few ready to wear pants after cleaning out my wardrobe prior to last years move. I wasn’t wearing a lot pants and the weather the last couple of years meant I hadn’t really needed them. In the past I haven’t had success at making woven pants so I have been hiding away from making them. In 2019 when I was in Melbourne I purchased the Tessuti Robbie Pant pattern after it came highly recommended by a friend. The pattern has sat untouched in my stash complete with the ribbon still tied around it. With the fear of cold legs I thought it was finally time to attempt them.

The style is very simple – Woven ¾ length wide leg pants with patch pockets on the front and an enclosed elastic waistband. The fabric recommendation is light to medium weight wovens. At Easter I had the sudden urge to make them. In Melbourne I did buy fabric to make a test pair but instead I grabbed a black cotton from my dressmaking stash because I had black thread in my overlocker and I was too lazy to change it. The fabric was in fact brought years ago with the intention of making pants. It wasn’t really clear which direction this print went so I opted for upright scallops instead of downward raindrops. I think the fabric is a quilting cotton but it is a firmer one and not a super soft cotton like some are.

Based on my hip measurements I made size XL. I have a habit that when I trace out a pattern where I add in extra seam allowance. It is a bad habit that I have. In my mind I think how I don’t like clothes tight. Not knowing if the pattern makers idea of what a comfortable fit should be is the same as mine I add the extra fabric “just in case” When I cut out my fabric on these pants I didn’t add in extra seam allowance. I’m really happy with the fit of these. There is enough room in them to move comfortably but they don’t appear baggy. I am short so this length is more a full length for me, any longer and there is a chance I would get caught up in them as I walk.

After reading all the instructions which were very easy to follow. The instruction booklet has step by step photos so you can follow along and know what your piece should look like at every stage. I did make my waistband a little different to the instructions. The pattern has you join your elastic in a loop and place it into the waistband halfway through attaching the waistband to the pants. This method makes it harder to replace or alter the elastic if you ever need to. I opted to attach the waistband on first leaving a gap on the inside of the casing to thread the elastic through at the end and sew the elastic together. If I need to shorten the elastic or replace it I can easily do so. I used 1″ wide white elastic. I buy the elastic in black or white. I never thought there was difference between the 2 colours but when I tried these pants on at the end the white elastic didn’t seem to be as firm as what the black is. The elastic might just be older and that is it but even before I inserted it I noticed the difference. I will see how they go after washing them but I may replace the elastic with black.

The pattern has markings to place the patch pockets. My pockets seemed smaller and I couldn’t place them along side the markings. These pockets are still very functional but next time I might make them a little bigger. I also might raise them higher too.

When I posted a photo of these on Instagram a friend welcomed me into the Robbie Pants Club! Robbie pants have a bit of a cult following, once you make one pair you tend to make more and I can see the attraction why. They are easy to make and are very comfortable. I could go a bit crazy and make heaps. In Melbourne I brought my test fabric as well as “good” fabric to make them plus I have another fabric from my stash in mind which might actually be my 2nd pair.

Comfort
Classic
Creative & Quirky
Natural fabrics

Back in 2016 I did a style workshop with Anne Whalley where we came up with 4 key things to consider when I’m making clothes. I haven’t referred back to my list in a while but these pants tick all the boxes. I love these pants. The fabric, the style, the fit. It was a spur of the moment decision to finally make them but I’m glad that I did. 

Recap
Pattern – Robbie Pants by Tessuti
Size – XL
Fabric – Quilting cotton from stash
Notions – Non roll elastic

The first day I wore these a work collogue commented she liked my pants, I casually replied “Thanks I made them” She was seriously impressed and I was smiling all day.

Cassiy

Oui Oui Mon Cheri x 3

Better Homes and Gardens have released the 2021 edition of their annual Knitting & Crochet Collection magazine. Last year I set myself the challenge of making an item out of each years magazine after realising I buy the magazine each year but don’t do anything besides read them. If I didn’t start making items from them then I could no longer buy anymore editions and had to pass on the editions that I had. I have finished my 2nd pattern so can tick 2 editions off my list.

Oui Oui Mon Cheri is from the 2017 edition. The pattern is for a scarf and beanie. I opted only for the scarf. The pattern is a diagonally knit striped scarf using 2 colours 8 ply yarn. The pattern is all in garter stitch (knit stitch every row) so it is very easy to do, a great mindless knitting project. The pattern is created by increasing or decreasing a single stitch at the start of the row and changing colours.

Using various unopened balls of Stylecraft Special DK which is an acrylic yarn from my stash I was able to knit up 3 scarves which I will add into my charity bags this year. I did modify the pattern slightly by changing my colours every 18 rows not 12 rows so I have wider stripes. The pattern has you carry the non working yarn up the side of the scarf between each striped block. I never get a neat finish if I carry my yarn up more than a couple rows so I made the stripes wider and cut the yarn between blocks. The wider blocks meant I had less ends to weave in at the end (I’m a lazy knitter) I knit these one after each other. I won’t lie by the time I finished the last one I was very much over this pattern but it didn’t feel like a chore. I’m sure I will use this pattern again for charity or gifts as it was very easy.

♦ 2014
♦ 2015 – Builder’s Work Wear
♦ 2016
♦ 2017 – Oui Oui Mon Cheri
♦ 2018
♦ 2019
♦ 2020
♦ 2021

I now have 8 editions in my magazine collection with 6 more to make from. I haven’t set myself a deadline to finish the challenge. I have noticed since I started the challenge I am actually using my magazines more. Before I virtually only read them once at the time I got them and would occasionally flick through the odd one if I was tidying up or if I was board. Now they are all stored on my bookshelf together and I am regularly taking them all out and looking through them. I have post it notes on potential patterns. Often I am picking them up before search Ravelry for ideas. I had no hesitation buying this years copy as I know I will use it, in fact one pattern has already caught my eye.

Cassiy

Sea Shell Bag

Last year I discovered the Full Moon Bag by All Well Patterns. It is a free pattern if you sign up to their newsletter. The bag is a circle shape with a half circle pocket on both the outside and inside. The fabric recommendation is canvas. I’m a geometric person so was instantly drawn to this bag.

For my first attempt I decided to make the small size. I opted to use quilting cotton from my stash so I did have to cut double the pattern pieces than instructions tell you to so that I could have the print showing on both the outside and inside. As I was using cotton not canvas I put a layer of heavy weight interfacing behind each pattern piece to give it more strength. I cut additional binding strips to cover the raw edges on each side of the zipper gusset but I didn’t use interfacing on those. I also opted to make the strap in the same fabric instead of using a leather strap.

Unlike a traditional bag where all your seams are enclosed on the inside this bag has exposed seams which you cover in binding. I make continuous bias binding using the method from Missouri Star Quilt Company. In this method you start with a piece of fabric cut across the width of the fabric and draw up your cutting lines from that. I cut a piece 7″ wide and drew up my strips 1.5″ apart. Once stitched up and cut I got over 160″ of binding which was more than ample to make both sizes of this bag. I have used this method a lot but had never started with just narrow cut of just 7″ so was really surprised at how much binding I got in that small amount.

This bag looks tricky to make but it is really simple and very quick even if you opt for cotton not canvas. To make life easier for myself I hand tacked the sides to the gusset first before stitching them on the sewing machine and removing my tacking stitches. I didn’t have to wrestle with pins this way and nothing shifted about. I did the same when attaching the binding. Once the binding was attached I folded it into place and put clips to hold it before I hand stitched it down. Even doing these additional steps it was very quick and very easy. The circle is a nice gentle curve which isn’t fiddly at all.

Recap
Pattern – Full Moon Bag
Size – Small
Fabric – Quilting cotton from stash
Notions – Metal zipper

This is my go to pattern this year. I plan on making many as gifts as it really easy.

Cassiy

M7487 Train Case

I think this pattern is officially called a Travel Case but the style is commonly called a Train Case. After having this pattern for years I finally got around to making it. A travel case is comprised of 3 sections – top, middle and bottom. The top has a handle on the outside. You can use a regular zipper or a 2 pull one. There is optional piping and the choice of inside pockets. I decided to make the most basic version without piping or pockets

M7487 is unique in the way that it is constructed. The seams that join the top/bottom sections to the middle section are all enclosed. When you make it you leave a turning gap that you sew closed at the end. If you look on Youtube all the clips showing how to make train cases are sewn with exposed seams that are later covered in binding.

Before I even traced out my pattern pieces I read the instructions then re-read them and re-read them. My brain just couldn’t grasp the concept of how the seams were enclosed. The instructions had the steps with simple line drawings but it just didn’t make sense in my head. After many days of trying to figure it out I decided to just start making it with the option of sewing it the traditional way if needed. The middle section was easy to do although I used the burritto method of joining the zipper to form the loop after seeing it in this Youtube clip. It is a way of fold back the zipper and sewing that so that all seams are in enclosed and you don’t have to worry about sewing one part with the fabric already folded at the back to cover the raw edge. Once I had my pattern pieces in my hand joining them to the middle zipper section suddenly made sense. I was able to place the pieces as per the line drawings. I’m a visual learner and need to see things in action. I can understand instructions better if I can see them step by step. Making this was actually a lot easier and quicker than the traditional way. From tracing out my pattern pieces on to trace and toile to actually finishing it took me only 3 days (I only spent a little time each day on it) so that is a pretty quick make for me. You don’t have all the binding to sew after you have attached all your sections so it is much faster.

The reason I decided to finally make this case was to hold my hand sewing tools in. A train case was the perfect solution for me. I can fit all my tools in. I can pick it up and move it about when I need to. If it gets bumped on my craft trolley my tools don’t fall everywhere.

To recap
Pattern – M7487
Size – Medium
Fabric – Quilting cotton from my stash
Notions – Double pull zipper
Would I Make This Again? Absolutely!

This pattern does look intimidating at first. I think the reason I first struggled with this is that I don’t have a lot of experience in sewing with patterns from the big 4 sewing companies where you have just have instructions and basic small line drawings. I am used to indi patterns where you have step by step photos or larger line drawings showing what things should look like at each stage. The method used to enclose the raw edges is great so I would recommend this pattern if you want to make a train case.

Cassiy

Knitting To Combat Online Screen Time

In my recent post about my reflections on my Digital Declutter 12 months on I mentioned that a habit I have developed is idle online screen time when I get home or later at night. Some of that screen time is productive reading blogs, emails, quick Facebook/Instagram check but once I have done all the “essentials” I’m just mindlessly scrolling. I’m often in front of the tv at the time and not actually focusing on the tv but my phone. I can’t just sit and watch tv I need to be doing something with my hands at the same time. If I’m crafting I’m still focused on the tv but if I’m on my phone I can’t focus on both things at once. In recent months I have been doing a lot of knitting on my Apple Core blanket and although that pattern is really easy and I have memorised it I do need to focus a little bit on it in parts. If I’m tired I lose track of where I am in the pattern if I put it down for even a couple of minutes. I have pulled many cores off my needles and started again after a memory blank forgetting what row I’m up to. Last week I decided I needed some autopilot knitting. Simple knitting that I can do without having to focus on stitch count or rows. Even late at night when I’m tired I can knit away and not play with my phone.

I have been knitting wildlife rescue pouches for WIRES for years but to be honest I haven’t had any of my needles for over 12 months. Before that I had always had at least one pouch on my needles. The way I knit pouches has changed over the years. I started knitting individual sides and joining them at the end then moved on to knitting them magic loop with a 3 needle bind off but in recent years I have knit them the most mindless way using Judy’s Magic Cast On and only having one end to weave in at the top. Pouches were the mindless knitting I needed to combat idle online screen time. Saturday I set myself the task of casting on a pouch.

I’m embarrassed to say it had been so long since I last cast one on that I couldn’t remember how many stitches I used or how to do Judy’s Magic Cast On. Luckily Very Pink Knits came to my rescue with her YouTube tutorial. After watching that my brain remembered and it was just a matter of working out how many stitches and how long to leave my long tail cast on. I had the number 72 so that was a starting point for my number of stitches. The way I was taught to work out the cast on tail is to wrap the yarn around the needle for the amount of stitches you need. What I forgot the first time I cast on was that with Judy’s cast on your only taking half your stitches from the tail yarn. The tail yarn I left was way too long after my 72 stiches as I only needed enough for 36 stitches. I’m a bit frugal with my yarn so I started again. after knitting a few rows I thought 72 looked too big so I took it off and started again with only 64 stitches. After knitting for a couple of centimeters I measured the pouch and it was only 16cm wide not 18cm so I started again. To be honest I lost count at how many times I started this pouch but I did discover I can do the magic cast on at 7.30 pm in front of the tv and actually have it work. 72 is my magic number. Although it does seem big at first once you get knitting it is the correct amount. I think I was knitting this until after 9pm which was great as I wasn’t playing on my phone but enjoying the tv I was watching whilst still having something in my hands.

I wanted to get back into knitting WIRES so I’m glad I finally have a pouch on my needles again, I have missed knitting them. I like the fact I can be productive with my knitting even late at night. It is helping to combat my idle online screen time. I’m still going to continue working on my apple core but I can do that earlier in the day or at times when I can knit and focus more.

Cassiy

Fabric Tray With Handle

Sometimes you have an idea and the end result is just how you imagined it would be whilst other times the end result turns out not as expected. This project was a not as expected project. I wanted to keep all my hand sewing tools in one area so I wasn’t constantly searching for all the items whenever I wanted to hand sew or hand tack items so I thought I would make a hand sewing station as such to keep all the items together.

Using scrap fabric from my stash I first made a simple tray by cutting out rectangles of fabric and layers of medium weight interfacing. After I assembled it the tray I could see that it was too flimsy and not as structured as I wanted it to be. I used lines of top stitching to give it more structure which helped a little. I made a simple handle and attached it to both sides of the tray. When I put all my items in it I noticed that the sides flared out a little and it was a little shallow however it seemed functional so I thought.

When I picked up the tray to move it as I often don’t do my hand sewing sitting at my craft table I noticed that this project wasn’t going to work for me. When it was lifted up the lack of structure in the sides and the base meant that all the items had to be positioned in the centre of the tray otherwise they put the tray off balance and fell out. If I have my hands full when walking I can’t focus on keeping this tray balanced otherwise I might trip over if I’m not focused on my walking.

I had a think about what I had made. On reflection the design wasn’t the best. The carry handle was great as I could carry it with one hand but the design of the tray wasn’t right. The sides of the tray needed to be more deeper and overall it needed more structure. The above photo is a bowl I made years ago. It is hand pieced with layers of cardboard between the hexies. In this project I should’ve used cardboard or a stronger iron on interfacing to make the tray more ridged.

I’m not calling this project a total disaster. I had a relaxing day sewing it. It gave me an understanding that lines of stitching can add structure to a piece. I discovered that the interfacing used does make an overall difference in how projects can turn out. This piece is a learning curve.

I have since made a proper hand sewing station which I will share in the coming weeks. I still have this tray although at this point I haven’t figured out what I will use it for.

Cassiy

Digital Declutter Challenge – 12 Month On

For the month of March 2020 I did a digital declutter challenge. The challenge was a break from social media and other online platforms. At the time I had so much going on with the lead up to our big move, the start of Covid and a few other personal issues. I found when I was going on social media and online that it was adding to my stress load and impacting my mental health so I decided to take a break from it after reading the book Digital Minimalism by Carl Newport. I set the challenge for the entire 31 days of March. 12 months on I thought is a good time to reflect on how I use social media and other online platforms now. Ideally I would have liked to have re-read Carl’s book prior to writing this but unfortunately I lent it to a friend last year and I still haven’t gotten it back yet. I will read it again once I get the book back. I still remember the book pretty clearly as it did have an impact on me.

 

Online platforms and social media aren’t a bad thing. As we’ve seen during the Covid lockdowns social media and other online platforms can have a positive impact allowing people to connect and feel part of a community particularly when they physically can’t be together. Saying that if you don’t control how much you use them and in what ways they can quickly consume you and for some people impact their mental health. That’s what happened to me prior to March 2020.

This post is in no way disrespectful or judgmental to how anyone else uses social media or online platforms. This is just thoughts and observations of my own personal use of them.

Last year I did write a few blog posts about it.

Digital Declutter – Part 1 (Pre challenge)
Digital Declutter – Part 2 (How I went)
Digital Declutter – Part 3 (Reflections on the challenge)

I’m not going to lie and say that I am completely free of bad habits I had last year. Particularly in recent months I have found myself sitting on my phone mindlessly flicking through Instagram and Facebook. The difference is now I’m actually aware of it. My 2 trigger times are when I get home from work before I start dinner (20 – 40mins) and at night when I’m too tired to craft. More on that later.

In my reflections post last year I broke down the social media and online platforms I use into groups. 12 months on the groups haven’t changed

Twitter
I still haven’t been back on twitter. I never got around to deleting my account last year. For some reason I was holding on to it without explanation even though I never used it and it clearly didn’t interest me. I was tempted last month to use it when in Australia Facebook banned Australian news sites from posting content but I never did. As I was typing this I decided to bite the bullet and I have now deleted my account.

Trello/Pinterest
I still haven’t downloaded either app after getting my new phone in February 2020. I still have accounts with both platforms but haven’t used them. Trello I will use again when I finally get in and sort out my fabric vault as I have some pieces already recorded on that. It was a good way to catalogue what fabrics and patterns I have. I haven’t had the need to look at Pinterest. Most new projects I decide on are inspired what I have seen on Instagram, blogs or Ravelry. At some point I might go in and declutter some of the items I have pinned on different boards. Pinterest will never consume me like it once did.

YouTube
At the moment I’m mainly using it for educational purposes to learn how to do different craft techniques and increase my Excel skills for work, I’m a visual learner so Youtube is perfect for that. I do still listen to music on it at work at times but for the most part it is just for learning purposes. I have discovered a Youtube channel which does dance moves as a fitness workout but I haven’t yet done any of the workouts.

Ravelry
I don’t go on there as often as I used to. It is still a fantastic database of patterns to search through particularly as you can narrow your searches to specific yarns or pattern types. Ravelry is also good for documenting the tools and techniques you used for different projects you make as I always forget that information.

Blogs
Reading blogs is one area that in the last 12 months I have started doing more. I have actually found a lot more sewing and yarn blogs than I had before so I’m enjoying reading those. I’m actually commenting on more blogs than I have in the past. I’m limiting my blog reading to only at night during my too tired to craft time. I’m a blogger and I find other people’s blogs interesting too.

Instagram
I’m not posting on there as much as I was in 2019 early 2020. Before when I was making a project I might post several times during the making of it but now days I only post when something really good or really bad happens during the project and the finished object. Not spending time worrying about photos of the project is allowing me to focus on the project more. Part of the reason I craft so much is that I enjoy the process of it. I still do post a few non craft related posts from time to time. I have culled back a lot of the people and hashtags I follow on Instagram. I used to do this every couple of years but I have been even more ruthless now so that the posts I see are more inline with what I am interested in now.

Facebook 
Last month Mr StitchNSew decided to delete his Facebook account as he was sick of it. I broke into a cold sweat thinking I can’t do that! I admit at times of boredom I look at it more than I should particularly at the times mentioned above. I don’t look at it when I’m not at home anymore. Even at home if I’m busy crafting or doing other things I won’t look at it until I am sitting down in front of the tv. Last month we had a rather long wait in the Emergency Department. In the many many hours sitting there I wasn’t once tempted to pull out my phone and look at Facebook. I used Messenger a couple of times but that was it. I had my crochet so I just did that to kill the time. I don’t post as much on Facebook as what I used to. I just don’t feel the need to now. I have changed my rule of not being Facebook friends with people I work with but that’s because work dynamics have changed a little and I’m closer to some people now considering them friends not just work collogues. I work in large department so I’m not suddenly going to become Facebook friends with everyone as I still need that break from work. I have trouble “switching off” from work at the best of times so it is important for me not to have that constant work reminder in my Facebook feed when I see people’s names pop up. I have unfriended a few people that I don’t have a connection to anymore and I’ve discovered you can also unfollow people without unfriending them so I have done that for a few people. I’m not being mean or sneaky it’s that I want to keep my Facebook feed to things I’m interested in now. I have left several Facebook groups and unliked a heap of pages for the same reason. For me Facebook is still a valuable social media platform but I want to keep it relevant to my current interests.

Now to address my current issues. On weekdays I need to put a self imposed ban on Facebook and Instagram when I get home as I know I’m just killing time and there are other things I could do in that short period of time. I can still use it but not until later at night when I’m too tired to craft. A small amount of online time in front of the tv is ok for me. At the moment I don’t feel like I need another break from social media but if I start to feel overwhelmed again with it like I was last year I will.

Cassiy

Green Zipper Pouches

I wanted to make a Christmas gift for a friend at work but I wasn’t really sure what to make. I’m always taking mental notes during conversations for potential ideas for gifts. Even at work my brain is thinking craft ideas. I thought zipper pouches are a safe bet because they are such a handy item to have. Is there such thing as too many zipper pouches in your life. I noticed over time that my friend like green (she had a green drink bottle, phone case was green, once wore a green shirt) That was enough evidence in my head to go with the colour green. Just prior to making her gift Mr StitchNSew mentioned he needed an item to keep his seed packs in so they wouldn’t get lost in the “shed” so I decided to make him a pouch too as the pattern I use is quick and if I made the seed pouch in green I could make 2 pouches at once. The pattern I used was the box corner Essential Wristlet pattern. I really should count how many times I have made this pattern over the years. It is my TNT pouch pattern. I used the standard size that comes with the pattern for these.

In my stash I found a few suitable fabrics. On the gift pouch I used a fabric that has a gold metallic like print around the leaves. Fabrics like this are perfect to use in bags but not something that I use in my charity sewing for animal rescue as I don’t trust the fabric to be 100% breathable. I really like the print of it and I just had enough to squeeze out this pouch so I’m glad I could use it up and declutter my stash a bit at the same time. For the seed pouch I just used some other green fabric in my stash. This fabric is a lovely subtle print but I was unlikely to use it any gifts and the small amount I had was perfect for this pouch.

For the insides of both pouches I used the same green fabric. I had picked this fabric out to match the outer fabric of the gift pouch. As the piece was large enough to cut out the pieces for both pouches it made sense to use it on both and use the piece up. Both zippers came from my zipper stash after I had just restocked it. This was a good project using stash items.

This was my last gift made for 2020. I did actually get a little more sewing done before the end of year but I’m counting that gift as part of my 2021 gifts.

Cassiy

Craft Project Bag

As I was making the storage bag for our stick blender I thought the size would make a great craft project bag. I still haven’t made myself one yet but I did make one for a friend for Christmas.

The pattern I used was my TNT Essential Wristlet pattern by Dog Under My Desk. I mentioned in my storage bag post that I enlarged the pattern even bigger than previously so this is my XXL size. I love the basic box corner shape of this bag and it is super easy to make. On this bag I added top handles for the first time. This was the project I was working on when the ghost decided to sew (so I thought) I normally sew a cross through my straps when I stitch them on to reinforce them and the machine didn’t stop in the corner like I wanted it to. To be honest I wasn’t actually happy with my first set of handles as they were too short plus I didn’t stitch them about 1″ square on to the bag so I took them off and redid them.

My friend likes to knit, crochet and do needlework. In my stash I found some fabric which represents all those crafts. This was perfect fabric for a craft bag! When making bags I like to use a lighter coloured fabric for the lining so that you can find things easier when you are searching through it. In my stash I found some pink and white striped fabric which was perfect as my friend likes pink.

My friend is going to use it as her knitting bag whenever she goes on trips away (cause we all pack ample knitting for trips away) so I’m glad she will use it. I enjoyed making this bag. This larger size in my head I thought would work well and seeing as a finished project I know it will. I have to get in and make my one now.

Cassiy

Inside My Sewing Foot Pedal

We have a ghost. He is a friendly ghost not a spooky haunting ghost. He has been around for years and even moved house with us last year. Little things occur around the house at times that can’t be explained. The kettle might turn on by itself or you will hear someone walk down the hall but no one is there. On Saturday morning he even turned the tv on in the bedroom.

For a couple of years now the ghost would even sew. I would take my foot off the foot pedal and the machine would sew for an extra stitch or two. It was never an issue. One day the ghost took things to far. I took my foot off the pedal and the machine wouldn’t stop. Normally if I pressed the lock stitch on my machine that would stop the ghost but not this time. I checked the foot pedal wasn’t stuck under my table, pressed buttons on my machine and it just kept stitching. You can operate my machine without the foot control plugged in by a start/stop button. I pulled out the foot control and pressed the stop button which stopped it. I put a SOS out to my Facebook friends asking has this occurred to anyone else. Turns out it wasn’t the ghost misbehaving instead an issue with the sewing foot pedal. Apparently the inside of the sewing pedal can get dirty. I had never thought about it before. I wipe down the outside of it every now and then but have never thought about what was going on inside. One friend gave me instructions on how to clean the inside as told to her by a Janome dealer after she had the same issue.

I was a little nervous as to what I would find on the inside after another friend had mentioned dead bugs, we had lots of dead bugs at the old place and didn’t know where some went to die. On the underside of the foot pedal there are 4 screws, I had to peel back the rubber stoppers to access 2 of the screws. You undo the screws with a regular screw driver.

As I slowly pulled open the back covering my first thought yes no bugs! As you can see it was little bit dusty in there. To be honest it wasn’t as bad as I was expecting, in my mind I was thinking large dust and fur balls. Using a paint brush which I use to clean out the bobbin area of my machine I dusted it out. I pressed the white lever and it looked ok. There was no obvious connection issues as all the wires looked intact. I think you can wipe over the lever with a cotton tip and some rubbing alcohol if you had any. I didn’t wipe it over this time but I might rub an alcol wipe next time. It was interesting looking inside it. I don’t know anything about electronics but I like looking inside of things and trying to figure out how they work or at least the various components of them. I had never thought about what the inside of this looked like but I could identify the reel the cord wound into and the lever which activated everything when it was pushed down.

My machine is working pretty good now so it looks like the issue was dust. I’m going to regularly maybe every 6 – 12 months pull it apart and give it a clean. It makes sense that the foot pedal would need to be cleaned on the inside. It sits on the floor where there is dust and bits of threads so naturally it will pick up stuff inside it.

If you have never cleaned inside your foot pedal get out a screw driver and have a look inside. Even just looking inside may give you a better understanding on how it all works.

Cassiy