1. The monkey's sweater looks like it's going to fit him! Good news for someone who is less than precise (Hint: this will be a recurring theme today.) Unfortunately, it seems like it might accentuate his 12 year old proportions. However, it does reach his wrists and his waist, unlike his real clothes. His sleeves are usually too short and the hem is too long. His sleeves were 18" long (for 20" arms) and his waist to armpit measurement was 13". Even better news is that he likes it. He decided on a ribbed collar. (vs. rollneck) Now I need to read the next part of the directions. I'm not sure how to get it from the end of the shoulders to where the collar starts.
2. I might be a lazy sewer. I generally decide it's a good time to quit when I run out of bobbin thread. I would be pretty happy if they made a bobbin-winding-gizmo (kind of like those video tape rewinders that you'd see in the men's department of JC Penney's around Christmas time back in the VHS days.)
3. Like gauge, seam allowance can be important. These coin things that I'm sewing together for the coin quilt? Well, if I sew one string of them together with a "generous" scant 1/4" seam, and sew another with a scant scant 1/4" allowance, they're going to end up being different lengths.
4. I learned something from the blogs. Sewing together these coins had been pretty tedious. It uses a lot of thread in the lead-off because my sewing machine unthreads itself if there isn't a lot of thread hanging behind, during the needle raise (I think) - at any rate it's a real PITA. This post mentioned something about a leader-ender, and she sewed up a bunch of 2" squares, so I believe she knows of which she speaks. I don't know if I went and followed that link, but it got me to thinking. I had a stack of coins that were going to go in one strip. And the whole point is randomness, anyway, right? So I went through the stack sewing pairs together, and left a couple stitches of thread between each of the pairs (no cutting). Then cut them apart and sewed the pairs together to get 4's. rinse and repeat until it's all put together. I'd make aesthetic decisions starting at the making a set of 4 level, and am even more pleased with the strips of coins that I did this way. They seem to have a randomness that is agreeable (or makes sense or something.)
I also put together two tote bags, but again, decided it was time to quit when I had to wind a new bobbin to go with the next material, and went on to the coin quilt. Now, I'm off to do some ironing, because the coin quilt is ready for the next step.