Breaking Bad (sewing habits)

Breaking Bad (sewing habits)

The Sewing Society and Sewing with Scraps have come up with about 15 “not so good” sewing habits that can cause sewing mistakes and health problems.  For the next several weeks we will take a few at a time and explore how and why we should break these habits.  

The first and really important thing is that we should STOP NOT CLEANING our machines.  We have talked about this many times in the past and probably mention it many times in the future.(Sorry). A simple cleaning of the bobbin area is crucial.  When you purchased your machine, it came with a lint brush.  Use this to clean out the bobbin area of dust bunnies.  They are not cute, but they do multiply.  Be sure to unplug the machine before cleaning.  You should do this after every 8-10 hours of use.

NOT CHANGING YOUR NEEDLE is a terrible habit.  A needle that you have used for months can become dull and bent, which leads to broken thread and uneven stitches. Using new needles will help keep your seams tight and prevent stitches from skipping.  Makes pretty seams.  PRETTY SEAMS MAKE PRETTY PROJECTS.  Needle manufacturers recommend changing your needle before you start a new project.  Maybe a little excessive but surely every 2 projects.

NOT CLEANING YOUR IRON can cause staining and crud (yes a sewing term) left on your fabric. Clean the iron’s soleplate and the steam vents, where residue tends to collect if you use tap water. Commercial products that are specially designed to clean irons are on the market. But there are also ways to clean your iron using household items, such as vinegar, salt, baking soda, toothpaste, dryer sheets, and dish soap .  Home Depot suggests this method:

Steam irons need to be cleaned out pretty often to ensure that they don’t leave rusty water marks on your clothes. While you can buy commercial-grade iron cleaners, they tend to be harsher, so a simple homemade iron cleaner will do the trick. Here's how to clean a steam iron easily and inexpensively with a mixture of vinegar and water.

  • Mix 1/4 cup white vinegar with 3/4 cup distilled water. Pour mixture into the iron. Make sure the iron is cool and unplugged before adding the mixture to the steam vents.
  • Plug in the iron and turn the steam feature on. 
  • Let the iron heat up for approximately 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Press the steam button and hold until steam comes out.
  • Repeat 4 to 6 times before turning off the iron.
  • Using a clean cotton swab, clean the iron’s steam vents to remove any deposits or buildup.
  • Unplug iron and let it cool.
  • Empty out the mixture of vinegar and water.
  • This mixture can also be used to clean the iron’s soleplate.

First blog of May (warm weather!!!).  Hope you enjoy our posts and please share your project with us at on Instagram  #Chateausew&show.

If you have any topic or suggestions for our weekly chat, please email me at

Available Monday, May 8 is the BoHo Pillowcase.  You know you want extra pillowcases for that Duvet Cover we made last week.

Be sure to buy plenty of fabric for these extra pillowcases when you purchase for the Duvet Cover!! Chateau Sew & Sew is waiting to help you.  Call or come by.  

Remember to check out Monday’s, May 1 free PDF   Kaffe Fassett  - Darling Duvet Cover & Pillowcases Come back next week we will be discovering new tips and tricks.

Happy sewing 

Karen and Susan

May is the time for fresh fruits and vegetables.  I run to my local farmers market each Saturday.  We are so fortunate to live where food is abundant.

Tomato, Onion, and Cucumber Salad

Recipe courtesy of Rachael Ray

Show: 30 Minute Meals

Level: Easy

Total: 5 min

Prep: 5 min

Yield: 4 servings

5 medium plum tomatoes,   halved lengthwise,seeded, and thinly sliced

1/4 red onion, peeled,    halved lengthwise, andthinly sliced

1 Kirby cucumber,    halved lengthwise andthinly sliced

A generous drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil, about 2 tablespoons

2 splashes red wine vinegar

Coarse salt and black pepper 

Dress the tomatoes, onions, and cucumber with olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt, and pepper.

Let stand while you prepare dinner ,about 20 minutes. Re-toss and serve salad with crusty bread for mopping up juices and oil.