Prepare your Sewing Machine for Travel
If you are among the lucky ones to plan and go on a summer vacation – Good for you! You just need to prepare a bit. Vacation provides more than just basking in the sun or breathing fresh air in the mountains. Some of the benefits from taking vacations are lower blood pressure, lower stress hormones and a decreased risk for heart disease. It is said, the more vacations, the longer a man (or woman) lives.
Now to plan where to go
For most who are planning their journey, it all begins with the WHERE. Followed by booking their flight and hotel, and finally schedule their activities while away. If you are a sewing enthusiasts, like myself, you are also thinking of these questions below:
- Is there a local quilt shop?
- Can or Should I bring my sewing machine? See below for a video on how to prepare your sewing machine.
- Are their classes where I am headed?
Now a-days, there are many activities us sewing enthusiasts and quilters can do on vacation.
- Sewing Cruises with Sew-Lebrities
- Sewing camps and retreats with different guilds
- The Summer sensation – The Row by Row Experience
The Row by Row Experience is a nationwide (Canada and Europe too) “shop hop” of sorts. Each summer from June 21st-September 6th quilt shops create their own quilt row measuring approximately 36-1/2″x 9-1/2″ tall (see some Rows below). The Row by Row Experience team chooses a theme, 2016 theme is Home Sweet Home, then the quilt shop will design their row based on that theme. Shoppers plan a road trip in order to stop by as many quilt shops as possible. The rows are only available if you walk in the door of the shop and most shops will have a fabric kit available for purchase which corresponds. Each store has the option to create a fabric license plate with a catchy phrase on it (warning these are super duper cute). FabricPlates, designed by Debra Gabel of Zebra Patterns, can be used in all sorts of projects; purses, quilts and home decor. In the past two years I have created eight different patterns where these plates can be used; totes, wallets and all sorts of purses. Ask the quilt shops you are going to if they have them in stock or can order them for you and ship to your home address.
It is my belief, the quilt shops have a ton of fun preparing for this summertime event. Some shops prepare multiple Rows, have parties, and prepare events to correspond with the time frame. Each store has their own hours of operation, so check ahead while planning. Here are a few different rows below:
Spool Quilts in Chattanooga TN
Keep Me In Stitches, Carrollwood, South Tampa, and Largo FL
First Stitches in Canon City CO
Fringe Fabric in Salida CO
Time to prepare your machine
Time to Now its time to prepare your machine for travel. A few key points you want to remember.
- Remove your embroidery unit properly. There is usually a key/button on the screen which will move the embroidery unit to the far left – then remove the unit.
- Clean your machine by removing the throat plate, remove bobbin case, clean with lint brush. Tip: Always pull lint and dirt OUT of the machine, never Blow into your machine.
- Wipe the outside of the machine and embroidery unit with screen wipes.
- Change presser foot for basic sewing (change to a fresh needle) – lower the presser foot and sink needle into a piece of scrap fabric.
- Cover the machine if you have a cover.
Watch this quick video below and see the entire process of preparing your machine for travel.
Time to pack your machine into your suitcase! Be sure to carry-on your machine if you are traveling by air. I have the perfect carry-on case which holds my little Babylock Sophia on one side and embroidery unit on the other. Then we pack it full of socks, fabric, and Heidi’s little dolls.
Tip: Let TSA know you have a sewing machine in your bag so they don’t look at you like you are carrying something dangerous. I was so pre-occupied with Heidi that I forgot to mention it. TSA opened my bag.
No damage and my Baby is in good working order. My vacation is with family so I must work around their schedule but what is funny is my big brother knows me so well, he actually set aside a few days for me to sew! Next time I will share with you what else to bring along on your sewing journey.
Happy Stitching on vacation!