had an interesting realization yesterday:

there are a lot of different ways to fix something.  even machinery is non-binary.

This occurred after I took my juki home serger to Biddeford for Tony to take a look at it.  I thought it was out-of-whack because I couldn’t get it to sew stretchy enough seams, and broke three needles last week.  I knew it was missing a screw on the foot as well.

This machine, despite being a home serger, is kind of complex.    It comes with about ten different presser feet (I’ve only used one) and can do about 40 different types of stitches –  overlocks and coverstitches.  (but since rethreading the machine is time consuming, I only use it as a serger/ overlock.)

Again-  a reason to buy one machine per function if you sew professionally, or even sew a lot.  It’s cheaper all round.

Tony, who had probably never seen that exact type of machine before, but has seen plenty of home sergers, approached fixing it this way:  test, adjust the tension, test, try rethreading it to loosen the tension, test, loosen the tension some more.   The whole process took about fifteen minutes.  He didn’t look at the instruction manuals at all (of course.)  He also didn’t follow the ‘proscribed’ threading diagram, instead rethreading in a way not ‘permitted’ by the diagram and thus loosening the the tension.

I realized as I was leaving-  hey, that’s the same approach I use with sewing.  The are no rule books anymore.

and I realized that’s an element of mastering any field. When we get familiar enough with something, there isn’t a right and wrong way to do anything.  There’s a continuum of ways something can be done, and with enough experience, we can see how the continuum works.

Posted by:Brook DeLorme

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