This being summer and me having half a dozen projects on the go, I was totally freaked out when my lovely Bernina sewing machine began grinding and groaning like an ancient tractor. I’d had it serviced last fall when we were in Italy and had never heard anything so ominous coming out of an expensive piece of electronic equipment.

I telephoned That Sewing Place, because I’ve been dealing with Evelyn, Wayne, Jaret, Liana and Fred for more than 25 years, when they were located on Leslie Street at Evelyn’s Sewing Centre. Like me, Evelyn sold the original business and sort of retired for a while, but she got restless and there was a demand for a friendly, service-oriented store so the family jumped back into the business. Getting a kitchen appliance fixed isn’t much of a hassle but for specialty equipment like sewing machines, sergers or even computers, trying to find someone competent and reliable is a challenge.

I’ve lost track of how many classes I’ve taken over the years. The garments I’ve churned out include a fur-trimmed winter coat with leather accents and a two-piece ensemble of waterproof toasty ski jacket and overalls. I’ve worn the wool coat until the fabric got thin and shiny. The snowsuit I made when I decided to learn to ski at age 50. I wanted to wear something bright that would enable the ski patrol to locate me if I slid off the face of a cliff into a ravine.

The grandkids laugh at Grandma’s ‘clown suit’ but hey, I can roll around in the snow all day without getting cold. Actually, the jacket still fits, although the last time I put it in the dryer for too long and the high-loft insulation started to get a bit crunchy.

July 22, 2015 at 1152AM

Once I calmed down, Jaret suggested it might be a faulty electronic break – easy to fix. OR a blown motor – easy to fix but expensive. I left it in their good hands.

By the time Hub and I returned home from our day downtown, Jaret had called to say that a ball of thread had somehow got sucked into the machine, wrapped itself around the motor gear and was stopping the drive belt from functioning properly. Jaret took a video, but it’s too big to upload here and I don’t have the patience to figure out how to compress the file.

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I have no clue how that thread got into the vent slits and into the machine works, but they did. Now I can get back to my sewing.

More important – once again, the value of dealing with local professionals comes through loud and clear. There was no charge for the service and I left with a smile and the knowledge that if something else goes wrong or I need sewing supplies or advice, I’ll be right back there.