Sunday, December 10, 2017

A Sewing Job for the Church, Part 1: In which I Ramble about How I got the Job in the first place


I happen to casually mention to my priest that I used to repair linens and vestments for the church.

Little did I know that he had a job lined up for me the week afterwards...LOL.

(How did that happen???)

Last week, Father let a couple of us into the church so we could go to choir practice.

He pulls me aside and says "Catherine, have you got a minute?"

Of course, I did. The women didn't start rehearsing until 30 minutes after the men anyway. (And you don't refuse a priest if you can avoid it. *nods sagely*)

So Father tells me to follow him. Which I did. (Though, in hindsight, I should have put my stuff down somewhere beforehand. Oh well. Minor details.)

We go into the sacristy, and Father goes to the circuit board and flips a couple of switches.

Odd, I thought to myself, normally any repair jobs are kept in the sacristy.

Now, Father goes past me and opens the door to the sanctuary. Again he tells me to follow him.

I thought to myself, Okay......what in the I *quickly* scramble to put my headscarf back over my head (I have a teal fleece headscarf that I wear in the wintertime and I had pushed down when I was inside the door)

(I should point out right here, that no woman, unless accompanied by priest or under special permission is allowed to go into the sanctuary proper (you know, the chancel, behind the communion rail, etc.). Especially through the sacristy door.) 

Anyway, we go into the sanctuary, genuflect before the Tabernacle, and go over to the Epistle side of the Altar (which is the right side, in case you didn't know). We stop in front of a small table where there is a white (or what should have been white on closer examination) cloth was draped over.

(I should point out here also, that this is the table where the cruets, the patens, and the Lavabo dish and pitcher are placed during Mass, just to orient you girls to where we were.)

Father looks at me and says, "This is a cloth."

"Yes, Father." (kid you not, girls, he really said that)

"It's about twice as long as it needs to be."

Okay! I got it now. From there it was a small discussion on what exactly he wanted done to it (a simple case of cut, hem, and make sure it matches the other side, oh and please wash it, it's a little filthy) No problem!! (or so I thought)

During the rest of the men's practice, I took the time to examine the ends that I supposed to match.

I found out that it was going to be slightly more complicated than I had anticipated.

For some reason, the edge was cut, serged and partially French-seamed to make a flat finish, and then hemmed with a two inch hem (embroidery matched to boot).

The edge is on the left,  it's really hard to see but there is a double layer there. And you can see where the hem goes right up that IHS embroidery. 

Well, that raises the stakes just a tad....Oh well, just going to have to be a lot more careful and get this edge right. No pressure. (Now I understand why Father said it might be a bit of a bear...)

But before I do anything to this cloth, it's going in ze washing machine. And then the ironing board. But that's a story for another day.

WHEW. Did I lose anyone in that mess? I apologize, it came out much MUCH more rambly than I had anticipated. I promise Part Two will be more coherent (I hope...) 

Hope you enjoyed the post!! Have you (or your mom) ever taken care of your church's linens? Chat with me in the comments! 

Old-fashionably yours,