Wednesday 25 May 2011

My Machine Has Been Swearing At Me!

On the premise that when you hear a *bleep* on television you know that a swear word has been covered up, I can only surmise that my sewing machine has spent the best part of the afternoon swearing at me. How rude! It has just been beep, after beep, after beep. We shall not discuss that my machine makes that sound when you are going too fast with the FMQ. That is completely besides the point.

To everyone who left a message yesterday, and to those who didn't, thank you for your kind thoughts. I am feeling a lot better for a day of rest. It is unusual for me to be so knocked sideways by somethings as normal as a cold and I do believe I am just about normal again - or as close to normal as I have ever been. But I appreciate your sentiments.

The hardest thing about yesterday, relaxing, was not the doing nothing. I got quite into that groove and think I could grow to like it. No, it was the staying off the computer as much as possible. Blogs, Facebook, all that thing - you don't realise how much of your day can be taken up with 'quick checks' until you deny yourself. Probably did me quite good to have the reality check!

Today it was back to normal. Even doing housework. (shhhh! Don't tell anyone!) And also back to my (very rude) sewing machine.

I was surprised to receive the backing fabric that I ordered from The States only last week. It landed on my doorstep yesterday. There was no longer an excuse to avoid pinning some of my quilt tops. To break myself in gently first I decided to do the Double Fat Jack. A search through my thread produced one that matched just about perfectly. The fact that I think it is hand quilting thread and may even be waxed was ignored. It worked a charm.

Don't you just love wooden spools? I have a thing for them!
I went with a very simple pattern for quilting the flag and stuck with straight lines and my walking foot. I also used this doohickey (don't bother telling me the correct name because I won't remember) for the first time -

Well, doesn't it just keep you on the right path. I wish I knew what I know now five years ago when I began quilting. (Maybe I should have read up a little more about it before I jumped in feet first!) Either way, Fat Jack is quilted, simply and sparingly and is headed towards becoming a pillow (when I buy some more fabric for the backing).

With the flag moved on to the next step I chose one of the Pips quilt tops to layer up. Then I was in pinning hell. Is there anyone out there who actually enjoys the process of joining the backing, to the wadding, to the quilt top? I mean really! But I did it because it is a necessary evil.

Then I set up my machine for FMQ - and that was when the swearing commenced! I have decided on a looping pattern for the quilting, thinking that it was sort of like the path a child on a scooter would take - or a puppy - always the indirect one. I am about a third of the way through the quilting. The bobbin just ran out. I took a deep breath, and thought now would be a good time to write my blog. I'll do some more tomorrow.



  1. Since discovering the 'spray' I will never pin again!! Glad you're 'back'!

  2. Oh you have done so much and it`s all looking great - I`ve been working on my UJ quilt and it is not going well. I have the evil basting to do tonight or tomorrow. Grrrr. Have done some knitting - not going well either. Now Zaki is under the weather with a fever. It`s been one of those days.

  3. Yes I'm definitely on the hunt for basting spray (though UK mainland shops won't ship to NI because its an aerosol). Your fat Jack is looking fab and I can't wait to see your Pips all done. Looks like the rest did you good. Jxo

  4. Glad you are feeling better, I see you bought a Marian Keyes, that was definitely a good move. Have you read Rachel's Holiday, its her funniest by far!! Your Pips is looking great and no, you're not along, I hate basting!

  5. I just dont know how you get so much done! I just discovered what that doohickey on the walking foot was for about a week ago... duh... Handy innit?!

  6. aaahgh - basting: the thing I hate the most. I iron it as well, and then spend about an hour on the kitchen floor putting in my safety pins. By the time I stand up again, my back is killing me!
    Your FMQ is looking great: I really must get a quilting foot and give it a go

  7. I know its blasphemy, but I hate my walking foot. It makes this god awful racket and slows me down. Any tips? Also, I think I might try 505 spray baste for the dqs, just to make sure there's no puckers. Pin basting is the bain of my life.

  8. I HATE basting too! And I've been thinking trying the spray. Your quilt looks great!

  9. What a lovely post - it really spoke to me - as a fellow hater of basting. (Wouldn't you think some clever person would come up with a foolproof answer!) Also, my machine doesn't just swear at me - yesterday it spat out a tiny, but highly critical tension regulator - spat it out right onto the sewing table. It has now been taken to the naughty sewing machine shop to be sorted.

  10. Basting is easier if you use a spoon (yep a spoon) to scoop up the tip of the needle as it comes up to the top layer. Weird, I know, but I got the tip from Suzuko Koseki's books. I tried it and it works very well. I also love wooden spools. People all around me know this and every time a grandma goes into a home, I get a load of new-to-me spools!


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