Monday, December 16, 2013

Embroidery as bloodsport?

Hello, The Void. I have not been ignoring you. I have been... distracted. Yes, distracted. Looking for my wage job, maybe having found my wage job, and playing Candy Crush between anxious nail-biting and Etsy order-filling while waiting to hear from the HR department so I can start my training for the wage job.

But today, I tell you about my relationship with paper surgical tape, and why I keep it in my sewing tackle. It's not for piecing slashed patterns back together.

See, machine embroidery doesn't forgive you for being careless. I thought I was helping Gunny Jane, and she told me my micromanaging was not appreciated. She told me through my thumbnail and out the other side that I did not need to help her catch that initial stitch.

(First of all: If you are bleeding because you have sliced a piece of yourself OFF or nearly so, with rhythmic spurting of blood, just compress and contain, and get thee to the nearest emergency ward. You need stitches, and you are not the person to sew yourself up - you need TWO hands to do that. Second: if you're not up to date with your tetanus vaccinations, get your booster! You probably just had a needle go right through your finger in the sewing room, right? What's a little jab in the arm after that? Third: This is what *I* do when I hurt myself. I am not a doctor or a field medic, and I have a reasonably fortified immune system and pain threshold, with tolerance for gore. If you're not sure you need medical help, get the medical help. Be sorry you troubled your doctor with a minor injury, not sorry you didn't, and now have to deal with a massive infection.)

Because I have done stupid stuff like this before, I keep the paper surgical tape on hand to bind the fingernail in place and finish my project. Once the blood stops flowing (takes about 5 minutes of compression) I don't need to bulk up my finger with an absorbent pad. The surgical tape covers the jagged edges of a snipped or pierced fingernail, so I don't painfully snag on my project and reopen the wound. Also, holding that fingernail down will help it grow back normally. And I'm less likely to sew my tape to my project. (Yes. It happened. I learned and moved on.)

And while I keep dishwashing gloves in my tackle for free-motion embroidery and quilting, they also double as, well, dishwashing gloves, for dissolving the water-soluble stabilizer in the freestanding lace project I didn't bleed on when the embroidery machine bit me.

And I know you want to see the thumbnail. It's not Left 4 Dead graphic, but it's enough for some people. Pic is below the cut.

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