Friday, June 21, 2013

near finish, near disaster

backside of "romance in the garden", now fully quilted
i spent most of my day yesterday getting set up to epp,  so actual quilting had to wait until after bedtime. i broke the rule of "no fmq after 9pm" because i really just want to finish this quilt. i can taste the end, it's so close. (tastes like strawberries and smells of daisies.)

i am enamored with the texture of the stipple on the large strawberry field of the backing - yummy
everything went pretty well other than the usual nonsense of me forgetting simple, routine things. like putting my slider back on or not raising my thread antenna. maybe someday it will all be rote. i am pleased to report i no longer have to consult the manual to properly thread the machine or set up the bobbin. so that's progress.

i also tried using gloves. i'm undecided as to whether they are better or not.

i did make one new mistake, which makes for another lesson learned. i had to wind the bobbin shortly after starting and neglected to cut off that little tail that sticks up out of the top of the bobbin from where you thread it to start winding. big mistake. i kept getting these weird snags on the back of the quilt and what seemed like bobbin thread breakage. finally after 3 blips, i stopped to investigate. eventually i found the culprit, then was off to smooth sewing.

i am getting in the groove of fmq in spurts. you know how you hum along at a steady pace, just the right speed and stitch length? it's very nice. i don't like to interrupt the flow to stop for pins, so i got pretty good at maneuvering around them.

until about 1am, that is.

can you see the needle head dangling from the thread?
 i took a wrong turn and swerved directly over a pin! crash, crank, horrible screech and grind! oh, my goodness, my NEW machine!!! lots of exclamation marks.

 have you ever seen this? the end of the needle is embedded in the pin head. yikes! after i got my heart to restart, i began cleaning up the mess. you can bet i said a small prayer of thanks that no flying needle pieces pierced me. long story short: it took me an hour to get everything back on track. i pulled out all the screwdrivers and did open-plate surgery. for the first half hour i thought i had broken the machine because the needle wouldn't descend properly. diligence paid off, though, and i straightened everything out. thank goodness! another prayer of thanks offered. she does sound a tiny bit off to me, so i'll be sending her in for a good service after next week.

i got moving again, flinching every time i approached a pin, rather like i do whenever a bird flies near the car now ever since i hit a buzzard in may. (anyone want to hear that story and see pictures?) but after a bit i got cocky again and went around the pins that seemed a safe distance away.

btw, i really prefer #2 pins, the larger ones. they are much easier to get in when basting and a lot easier to get out when quilting, even with gloves on, due to the larger size.

i also got a bit of the backing's edge turned under again. all the big girls say to make the backing 2" larger than the batting on all sides, but it seems to be causing this tuck problem. how do i avoid this other than paying more attention, which is really hard to do when i'm concentrating on the flow of quilting? instead of unpicking and requilting these sections i just clipped closely around the spots. now i have a bit of applique detail on the back. just kidding. i'll tease the bits out later. mostly i'm miffed that i've cut into what will become strip scraps when the quilt is squared up and the excess backing comes off.
baby approves - she's my biggest quilting fan
i finished up the fmq  around 2:15am. sweet! good thing the kids let me sleep in until about 8:30. i still have a bit of a quilting hangover, but i'm surviving. (have i coined a phrase here, "quilting hangover", or did someone else state the obvious first? i would like to make at least one contribution to the larger quilting community. that may be it.)

with all my pins free, i think i'm ready to baste up "taite" and get her quilted!
that's been 2 years in coming.
her lipstick pink patent mary janes look nice with the quilt, no?

i have also finished unpicking "pom pom de paris"!
linking in with crazy mom quilts for friday finishes. i know, it's a cheat, but it was a good story. and the giveaway ends today so i needed to get the word out.


  1. Love those pink patent shoes.
    Oh, and the quilt too!

  2. I'd never want to admit it in public, but I may have caught my backing before, too! And that is definitely a finish. I love the strawberries and those yummy pink shoes. :-)

  3. Oh goodness! Hope your Juki is going to be fine:)

    I like the larger pins too and hope to get some more so I can trade them out for my itty bitty ones.

    I have done that numerous times too where you don't cut the thread coming from the top of the bobbin...doh;)

    Love the quilt especially the Strawberry print---got some in my stash somewhere:)

  4. Oh my goodness what a story! I can't believe you stayed up that late! That pin and the new machine bit make me cringe! I'm glad you got everything worked out. The quilt looks so fun!

  5. Hydee- I have done BOTH of those things. here's what I do now about the backing thing. I use a #2 pin perpendicular to the edge of the quilt and pin lots around the very edge. That way the pins hold it out of my way, and I don't quilt with it turned under.

    As for the needle thing, I am SO glad you got it fixed. I broke one on my brand new Bernina and had to get a magnet to retrieve the part way down in the machine. Of course, I finally got the magnet idea after fishing around for 45 minutes.

    :) Kelly @ My Quilt Infatuation

  6. Pleased to read of the happy ending - your photos of your little one with the quilt are gorgeous! Maybe an early night or two ahead.....

  7. Those lipstick pink patent major janes just plain look yummy. YUMMY!

    PS The quilt looks awesome too. Loving the strawberry back.

  8. Hi Hydee! Wanted to say thanks so much for stopping by my blog and for your sweet comments! I just love your quilt and the colors! Nice save! And those shoes ROCK! One of my little girls had a pair very similar and wore them with everything, in fact would even sleep with them on!

  9. LOL I have also learned that once it's 11pm, it's time to turn off the machine. Like Mom used to say, 'nothing good happens after 11"....Great job though!!!

  10. I recently hit a pin I didn't see and broke my needle into 3 pieces. Yes, it is heart stopping, isn't it. Love the strawberries. We should all have such pretty pink shoes.

  11. Yikes! on the pin incident. Open plate surgery was cracking me up:) Glad it worked out. Looking great though. I just love those strawberries and the shoes are too adorable!!!


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