The Carpenter and The Sewer

(Wilmington, NC)

Not necessarily two skills I’d use to describe Greg and myself, but that’s the interesting part about our now everyday lives. A new project comes up on the list and it’s time to tackle it, regardless of specific knack or prior know-how. Hell, if we’re going to figure out how to sail around the world, you’d think I could at least tackle a Singer sewing machine.

Greg, as has been extensively noted already, takes any trade in stride. Plumber, electrician, milk-crate aficionado – he has no problem. So today when his carpenter belt went on, we got a perfectly fit rib first cut.

The rib is part of the wood that needs to be replaced under the hot water heater. All the wood we’re installing in the bilges has been epoxy coated in an attempt to avoid any more water-logging. Greg installed the new rib right up against the old one for support and fiberglassed it to the hull.

After his carpentry work in the morning, Greg helped Menno take his boat back to his marina slip at Carolina Beach. Menno has had his boat – Eyra, a Lagoon 380 – here in the boat yard getting some bottom work done for the last couple months. Menno and his wife Val are seasoned cruisers with years of sailing experience. They have been a wealth of information for us. I think I’d run out of space if I started listing all the aspects Menno has helped Greg with, let’s just say things are always a lot clearer after Menno has been aboard trouble shooting the latest problem. And when I say Greg “helped” Menno deliver his boat, I know it was truly more of a help to Greg’s learning and experience than it was to Menno. Menno could single-hand Eyra around the world if he wanted to.

While the guys were out on the water, I was back on Oceanna playing with our newest toy. A vintage 1952 Singer 15-91 sewing machine. Besides being quite beautiful, it’s quite useful. We went with this machine because unlike the modern versions, it is gear driven. An aspect that is important when working with heavier materials like sunbrella and canvas.

My first sewing project is to make hatch covers. Since my latest sewing instruction came from Home-Ec class, circa 2001, its safe to say I didn’t know where to start. Thankfully YouTube can teach you just about anything. With my own personal instruction at my fingertips I was underway. One quick stitch rip later and the second try fit like a glove. Now I just have 12 more to go!














  1. Nice Job Kaycee!!! Looks like that home ec came in handy–love the blue!!! Keep up the great job!!!

    1. It is a great blue. Will be the same as our new sail bag and it matches perfectly to the middle boot stripe! The boat is looking pretty sharp.

  2. I am really impressed with that rib-cutter, but I am totally amazed at how domestic you look in front of that Singer that looks so so much like Grandma Myrtle’s pedal machine. Is your gear-driven machine electric or pedal power? It looks electric…
    Next thing you know, we’ll be hearing about you sewing up new sailing outfits!!

    1. Just call me Myrtle! But please don’t call me domestic Mom, ha. It is an electric machine.
      I’m not sure how comfortable or figure flattering square sunbrella outfits would be. I think I’ll just stick to covers.

  3. Mary Gardner · · Reply

    Hey Greg and Kaycee
    I am really enjoying your adventures
    Your boat is looking beautiful!!!
    Do you need a mature
    Sent from my iPhone


    1. Hey Mary, nice to hear from you. Greg says when we get down to the South America you can fly down and we’ll go check out the penguins! And maybe a sexy latino or two??!! Hahaha. Hope life is good.

  4. A hot sexy latino sounds great! It is -15 and snowing and so miserable that
    Delma just bailed on me and won’t walk on the greenway!!!

    Keep on slugging away on that boat….you two are amazing!

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