Sewing machine presser foot as helping hand

using sewing machine's presser foot as a
A “helping hand” is not new in sewing, nor in many crafts, for that matter. For example, there exist antiques of the “bird’s beak” clamp. Similar devices exist in jewelry making, watchmaking and other tiny-scale crafts, such as fishing lure tying.

I’m reasonably dextrous so I can manage manual tasks well. There are times though, when an extra hand would make things go quicker and/or less fiddly. For instance, when I need to rip a long long seam, as I did recently when shortening the skirt of my “Dorothy” costume. I wanted to re-use the costume but wanted something a bit racier than the skirt’s modestly long hem. Afterall, Halloween is the time to having fun dressing up the way that would get one arrested any other day 🙂 .

Anyway, the costume’s skirt hem has about two million yards of ruffled cotton eyelet trim:
Dorothy costume, front view
All of which had to be removed before the skirt can be shortened. The seam is straight and simple, but there was just so much of it!

With someone or something holding one side of the seam, things would go much quicker. Enter my sewing machine’s presser foot. It has enough grip force to anchor one side of the seam firmly and is a “quick-release” clamp of sorts which makes it easy and quick to move the seam along.

Oh, and this how the costume ended up looking (I didn’t get arrested 🙂 ):
Dorothy costume with matching purse