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ThayerRags

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Reply with quote  #151 
This mending thread hasn’t had much activity for a while, but then, I haven’t had much mending activity for a while either.  Back in May 2019, my wife learned that she has an autoimmune disorder that killed her kidneys.  They’re mostly scar tissue with 5% use, giving her ESRD (End Stage Renal Disease) and requiring continuous blood dialysis three days each week at a nearby small city 45-miles away.

We closed the fabric/sewing shop last May, and our sewing for the public consisted of just working through the 2-3 week backlog of mending and alterations in queue. I stopped taking in mending at that time as well, because we no longer had a store front for drop-offs and pick-ups.  We held out hope that she could open the shop back up on a limited basis at some point, but by August 2019, we realized that it would not be possible.  She continued to sell fabric and notions by appointment, but eventually, that trickled to a stop.  

Then, along came Covid-19 and we decided to quarantine ourselves away from the public. We covered the remaining merchandise in the shop with plastic sheeting, shut off all of the utilities except electricity, did away with the website and its expense, and shut our business down cold.  We did bring our inventory of small elastic home and sold it to our mask-maker customers (through a gap in the door while wearing a mask), until our inventory was exhausted (over 500 yds).

We still have all of our machines, and while I don’t use mine much anymore, she is using hers, and she’s got enough quilting UFOs (Unfinished Projects) to last her for the rest of her life (so she says).  That’s one of the problems with sewing for the public (or having any job that takes time away from your sewing) in that she has a very long list of quilting projects that she hadn’t had time to pursue before.  Well, let me tell you, there’s been some major quilting going on in our house for the last few months!

We’re still around, but life has changed.  Best wishes to all of my friends here at Victorian Sweatshop.  If the economy goes the way that I suspect it might, we may all be doing more mending in the future.  My treadle machines are ready when I am.  Are yours?

CD in Oklahoma

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WI Lori

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Reply with quote  #152 
CD, I'm sorry to hear of your wife's health, and having to shutter your business. A lot of changes in such a short time.

Please know we have thought of you often, and wish you both the best. Don't be a stranger around here, ok?

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Lori in Wisconsin
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Jim/Steelsewing

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Reply with quote  #153 
CD, you've been missed. Sorry to hear of all the issues. Hope better days are soon! Be well.
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pgf

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Reply with quote  #154 
Wow, CD -- you two are going through the wringer, that's for sure.  Nice to hear from you.  Was just thinking about you the other day, wondering whether I should try and patch a pair of jeans before they got worse.

But then they did, so, maybe too late.  ;-)

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Cari-in-Oly

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Reply with quote  #155 
So sorry to hear this CD. We lost my Mom just a year ago and my Dad just recently found out he has stage 4 kidney disease and is doing basically no treatment. He says when it gets to stage 5, he won't go to dialysis, he's just going to go fishing.

Cari

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Mavis

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Reply with quote  #156 
Sorry to hear about your last year's events.  Prayers and best wishes to your wife..  Glad she's able to enjoy her own quilt making at this time, and I hope she accomplices all she has in mind.  Glad you checked in with us and hope we will hear more from you.  You remind me I need to sit down and learn to use a treadle machine!
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Mavis
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Christy

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Reply with quote  #157 
Hello CD!  Nice to hear from you.  I'm sorry it isn't the best of news but good or bad please feel free to come chat whenever you have the time.  You've had some rough waters.  [frown]  I wish your wife well and hope you are finding a little time for something that lifts your spirits.
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Chaly

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Reply with quote  #158 
I didn't know about this thread since it hasn't been really active - I'm so sorry to hear of your circumstances and happy at the same time to know your wife is busy doing creative work to bring her joy.

Looking at some of your posts - you are a master mender!  What an essential talent - especially at this time, as you have alluded.  Since you have all your machines, you have potential to keep up this work when you are able.  I hope you can continue to contribute your expertise here and help others to learn a bit of your trade.

I know I could sure learn a lot.  Most of my family and friends don't know too much about my sewing or machines since this activity for me has only blossomed during recent retirement.   I was working in a completely different field so they wouldn't have assumed this activity from me.  Anyhow, when they learn of what I'm doing now with my time, always the first to ask is - can you patch/fix my jeans, or can you hem my jeans, or can you repair zippers?  I've patched enough of my husband's clothes that I know I don't know a lot of how best to do this work.  

Thank you for sharing your techniques and I hope you are here for continued guidance for those on this forum that would like to learn from you.
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SteveH-VSS

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Reply with quote  #159 
Wow, Just wow.  and I though my life was like a soap opera...  Way to hang in there!  If there is anything we can do, you only need to ask.  Hope to see you back on and commenting more for sure!
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ChattyKathy

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Reply with quote  #160 
CD, I have always enjoyed and learned from your input.  And very much enjoyed your humor.  Only last week I checked your website and found it gone.  My thoughts and prayers are with you and your wife.  Best to both of you.  
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ThayerRags

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Reply with quote  #161 
Thank you all for your kind words.  I may pop in every once in a while to read, but I’m no longer “eating, breathing, and sleeping sewing machines” as I was for the past few years, so I’m not doing much with sewing machines now.  Back in December last year, I bartered a Singer 31-15 to a leather craftsman near OKC that will be setting up a treadle-operated machine for some of his lighter work, but that’s all of the sewing machine activity that I’ve had for the past year, other than a bit of mending for myself with my green Singer 319 Treadle.

If any of you remember me saying that when my wife and I bought the fabric shop 14 years ago, the window and floor displays were all fully stocked with 1990s fabrics and notions.  I said at the time that “it looked like the owner went to lunch and forgot to come back”.  Well, ironically, it looks kinda that way again, only with newer inventory (if you could see it under the coverings).  We did retrieve some old bolts of that 1990s fabric from the storeroom and used it for our window displays now, maybe even some of the fabric that was in the window years ago, for all I know.

Financially, we’re good.  We were careful to pay for every bit of inventory before we got it, so we have always owned everything in the shop including the building, fixtures, and equipment.  The only thing that we had to pay for after closing was the new fabric that continued to arrive.  The newest fabrics have to be ordered 6-8 months in advance of delivery date, and some patterns aren’t even produced unless there are enough pre-sales to make the run.  The fabrics that did get produced were billed when shipped to us, so we were still getting fabric up into late fall.  We had money in the inventory account for all of that.  And that’s where the “open by appointment” came in.  Our regular customers had to have some of that new arrival fabric, of course!  They helped us keep the utilities on until deciding that we wouldn’t be trying to open anytime soon, and then we shed all expenses except the lights and property taxes.

My wife should now have the largest fabric stash in the county (20’x90’x14’ high), and she already had a fair-sized stash at home.  She’s like a kid with a new toy, being able to sew anything she wants, at about anytime she wants, if she wants.  And being in quarantine now since mid-March, there are very few interruptions.

Thanks again all.  We’ll do alright.  We’re just off on a new adventure!  We keep telling folks that “we decided to retire, close up the shop, and travel”.  (Of course, the “travel” is the same 45-mile section of road between home and the dialysis center, three days each week, every week, and every month.)  LOL!  Gotta look at life with a sense of humor when you can.

CD in Oklahoma

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khogue

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Reply with quote  #162 
Oh CD! It's so good to see you again. 

I'm sorry to hear of your wife's health issues and the closing of your shop. You do appear to be in good spirits though and that's a good thing. 




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KarenH in OK

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smokeythecat

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Reply with quote  #163 
I haven’t been on here for a while but I was Inspired to get my jacket out and realized it had a tear, and finally got my first naturally occurring knee hole patched (although the surrounding area still needs reinforced before another one happens)
[8-B0-C8-CC5-8095-4-E13-A8-FC-0-BF3-AAE6-E457]
[77-EC061-F-D46-C-4-FED-B66-A-529868-CF427-C]
[5-CCCE9-E6-ED69-43-A0-8402-2906-A7507-D8-B]
[19815-A0-D-0-D6-F-402-A-BB6-F-B29-F3-FF590-B1]
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ThayerRags

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Reply with quote  #164 
@smokeythecat:

[thumb]


CD in Oklahoma

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