I finally got the sewing machine fixed. The good news is the man who fixed it said i was better than most people who brought him dismantled machines or people who didn't use a transformer.
So what to do...the 2nd dress seemed to big a project to restart with.
I was knitting and my little double pointed needles were everywhere. i had found a lovely lady on Trademe who sold a whole set of DPs, 5 of each from size from teeny tiny UK 14 up to UK 000 for $25 for the lot. then i remembered that the knitting book i had borrowed from Rachel had a pattern for a needle holder. Well it was very successful! the slowest thing was the pockets themselves.