Sunday, December 19, 2010

Girl maths

Have you noticed that one of the nice things about quilters is that they are all enablers.
Never once have I heard a quilter say anything like:
          'I don't think you need anymore fabric'.
Oh wait. No thats not true. Actually I have heard that. But it was always followed seamlessly by 'But you have to get that anyway because it is so beautiful/cheap/perfect/in existence.'

So, I suppose I knew full well what you would say when I asked about buying a new spare machine in my last post. I kind of knew what my husband would say too although the thing with Dennis is that although I know what he is trying to get at, I never quite know how  he is going to get at it.

After spending an hour or so with pen and paper making charts about what features were different on a range of machines roughly in the right price range, I had narrowed it down to two choices. The Janome DXL 603 for £369 or the Janome QXL 605 which is exactly the same machine only it has an automatic thread cutter and costs £499.  I sit Dennis down. I show him the list of features and explain which ones are important to me. I am mid way through when he says ( and I am not making this up),
"Awhh!" in that way you do when you see something you feel terribly sorry for.
"A dog with seven feet. Awwh!"
"Oh no. I read it wrong. A seven point feed dog. Is that different?"

We get over that and I explain how I am asking him to help me make one simple decsion - do I spend £130 on an automatic thread cutter?
Simple in my head anyway. Eventually he manages to explain the cause of his confusion. Neither of the machines I am showing him are labelled £130. So what I'm really asking is whether I should spend nigh on £500 but somehow the question he has to approve is only about £130?

Oh yes. Girl maths in action.

And I can do Advanced Girl Maths too.
If I take the post tax profits (all sitting waiting in my account for a good purpose) from
(a) the quilt I sold
(b) the second Lark advance for our Twelve by Twelve book
(c) my profits from kits for the African Fabric Shop for the last quarter
I am £11.41 short.
So, if Dennis gives me that just because he loves me and to stop me making him sit and look at pictures of identical machines, the machine does not really cost me cash so much as I bartered for it by doing things I need a machine for and therefore the machine is self funding, and therefore free, no?

And if you want to go onto Degree Level Girl Maths, if I have a machine I can complete the quilt which I intend to sell as a magazine pattern which means that the machine is actually not free but comes with a cash back.

I do believe that Christmas is a time for miracles.


Linda said...

Utterly brilliant! And I thought that I had problems .....

Joanne S said...

I sold my back up machine awhile back so I could help out a friend who was forced to downsize. I got the Bernina of my dreams (vintage) with 100 design patterns and stitches. (I exaggerate) at a very low price. I bought it and have NEVER opened the carton. I suppose I might someday. I always see the back up as being very plain and utilitarian. A work horse. Not a show pony. I don't see the need to own two show ponies. The machine I use everyday is plain, no bells, no whistles but it does do zigzag and free motion. And I haven't needed to break out the show pony. In over 5 years now. Knock wood.

Nancy Anne said...

Oh, my! You made me laugh so hard I almost inhaled an M & M! I don't ever remember any course in my Math degree program that covered the calculations you required, but I think all universities need to think about adding one right away. And go for the thread cutter!

Gretchen said...

I love love love this post!! It completely makes sense and is exactly how I figure out the cost of things. Enjoy your cash-back new machine! It has a much better return than the stock markets right now anyway ;)

Terry said...

Ha ha! But, trust me on this, you are still going to eventually need a small and very portable machine IN ADDITION! You might want to keep your maths pencil sharp...

Just sayin'.

magsramsay said...

Waiting in tomorrow (DHL and weather depending) for delivery of Pfaff Grand Quilter and collection of Bernina Virtuosa 160 to trade in part exchange. I bought this Bernina with 'windfall shares' 12 years ago so that cost me nothing and I sold a quilt so that means my Pfaff costs nothing too!
I did buy a Bernina Activa 125 a few years ago to take on a workshop but it came into it's owh when my 160's circuit board blew! I don't need all the fancy stitches on the 160 so decided to trade it in and keep the 125.
I also still have my ancient hand operated singer and an Elna Lotus but lets not mention those....

Margeeth said...

If you ever tire of law, you can always become a financial controler, they do this kind of math all the time (and I can know this).
Buy the more expensive machine with the thread cutter, you will regret not buying it everytime you have to snip your threads (which will be many times).

Anonymous said...


I have found my perfect finacial adviser! I thiught I was pretty good at this, but you are the newly appointed queen.

Judy B

Rayna said...

Rolling on the floor! There was no question that you had to get the automatic thread cutter - how on earth can you cut thread without it? It's a no-brainer.

My husband claims we will be millionaires if I stop buying lottery tickets and we save all those dollar bills. Right.

Emmie said...

Of course, we all need at least two machines. I went on eBay a few years ago and bought an identical machine to the one I already had so that when one is in the repair shop, I have another to use and since they are identical, I didn't have to learn how to use a new machine. BTW It's a Pfaff 1473; old but a real workhorse!

Anonymous said...

Ah, I know that this is way, way, too late, but I just got onto it, and need to add my own girl math. You don't need to calculate post-tax: the machine is an expense and comes out of pre-tax monies. Thus, you have plenty of spare for the thread cutter.
Izabela from Australia