Iron Age
Published On: July 16, 2013

I stand by my position that sewing is poorly named.  The activity we call sewing is mostly ironing with occasional spurts of other activities to leaven the tedium.  I spent about 10 hours putting together two duvet covers and two pillowcases this weekend, and I’d say about 2 hours were spent actually sewing.  The rest were spent ironing, measuring, ironing, pinning, ironing, cutting, and ironing.

Given the scale of the project (huge), the complexity of the sewing (low), and the intended final result (rumply wrinkly bedding), I determined I would do the absolute minimum necessary amount of ironing (a good general life guideline actually).  The edges of the fabric looked like this, though, so some ironing was inevitable.

Sewing on that would just be asking for swearing, no matter how simple the project.  So I took the reasonable approach and ironed the 4 inches or so closest to the bit I’d actually be sewing on.

I started out trying to iron it perfectly, but no amount of pressing, steaming, tugging, and scowling would get all the wrinkles out (it’s linen, wrinkles are its nature…if you don’t iron it damp from the dryer, it’s never going to be perfect).  I elected to embrace imperfection and just get on with it.  And the truth is, it worked just fine.

After the ironing came the pinning, stitching, trimming, more ironing, more stitching, more ironing, more stitching, and more ironing.  Do you sense the theme?  The time actually at the sewing machine was limited.

I’m not actually going to tell you much about the putting together bits.  I more or less did this.  There’s another helpful tutorial over here.  They know more about sewing than I do, so it’s likely best to do what they said rather than precisely what I did.  The only real modification I added was to tuck some lengths of twill tape in at the corners so I can tie my duvet in place.

Next step, get them on the bed.  I’ll even properly make the bed and take pictures for next time.  Between now and then, I’ll be vacuuming.  This was the lintiest sewing project I’ve ever seen.  Everything is coated in a fine layer of fuzz.

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