14 July, 2008

Humming Along

Things are humming along in The Strawberry Patch, and not because I have forgotten the words, either, oh no... the machines are hummin'! Four sets of towels that have been "in" for monogramming are done, at long last. Check them off the list. Sundance is humming a sweet tune over the surface of "Patriotic Pizazz" today. (Click photo below to enlarge) The pantograph? It's "Waterworld" by Willow Leaf Studio, isn't it great? This old quilt top can soon be moved to the "done" list too! But, you should know, humming along doesn't come without it's own pain; sometimes the road to harmony is a rocky one. During the monogramming session my thread somehow wrapped itself around a thread guide and abruptly put the brakes on the process halfway through a hand towel. Let me tell you this, picking dense threads out of terry cloth ain't no fun, no sireee! I was energized after the towels were finally done and more than eager to begin on this quilt; new panto, new thread choice: "Freedom" (variegated colors, # 919) King Tut cotton thread (40/3) by Superior. It was my initial foray into combining differing thread weights, top and bobbin, on Sundance. Initially, it was a huge disaster, a complete and total thread tension MESS! A word to the wise... don't make more than one change at a time when you're trouble-shooting a machine, it's hard to know what has worked and what hasn't! Arrggh. My husband intervened and calmed my nerves. He mentioned how often, when working with machines, we (as humans) don't always work in a calm and logical step-by-step manner. He was right. Hadn't I only just caught the nut off the end of the tension spring, in my hand, when I hastily over-loosened it; out of sheer exasperation? This was a life lesson: how often do we over-react, making huge and dramatic movements when smaller, more refined, subtle movements would be so much more effective? With little to no other apparent success I defiantly reached for the owner's manual. The handbook mentioned treating a cotton spool with liquid silicone, i.e. "Sewer's Aid"; really? I could do that, I actually happened to have a bottle lurking in the cabinet. The results were simply amazing, it was just the miracle juice I had been searching for. I "drew" a line down either side of the spool and proceeded, slowly and cautiously... the thread behaved; no snags, breaks or hateful and unsightly thread "nests". The stitches, pictured above, are the proof. Before I knew it Sundance and I were once again in perfect tune, humming right along.

Life is Good!

12 comments:

Jeanne said...

You're making great progress. The towels look so professional and the quilting design is great for the patriotic quilt. Nice work.

Libby said...

The liquid silicone sounds like a great solution . . . I'll have to tuck that one away for future reference *s* Usually, I just turn everything off and leave until another day. I think my machine suffers from PMS *s*

Quilt Memories said...

Sounds like you've got things back under control. The towels and the quilt are just beautiful. You seem to be on a roll, keep up the good works. Bobbin

Barb said...

Yep that *sewer's aid* works, my distress a few years ago when trying to use *metallic* threads, nerves calmed for me when my sewing machine store recommended *sewers aid* gooooooood stuff!! Your work is beautiful, I am so happy that your nerves have been calmed :>)that means we will see more good stuff from you!

Simonetta said...

Great progress! I always read your blog but I don't often write, excuse me! Have a great week! Hugs

Rhonda said...

Those towels are wonderful.
I've chosen you for an award... details are at my blog. :-)

Quiltdivajulie said...

Waterworld is one of my favorites... Chris used it on And Sometimes Y which is one of the quilts headed to the Nashville show... we've used it again on 2 others and it never fails to be awesome.

Glad you and Sundance are sharing some quality time together!

Teresa said...

beautiful quilting and towels. Glad you figured out the problem. If my hubby had said that to me though, I would probably have thrown something at him, lol.

Karen Dianne Lee said...

Whew, what a situation! Again, another opportunity to be singing the praises of DH being home. Huh. He's really doing a good job of helping us doing a good job.

The Panto is fun and exciting to watch. Thank you for sharing. I love the towels, too, and hope Hannes liked being around today for all the adventuring. ;>

*karendianne./ Living Life at LeeHaven

Nane said...

Its good to see that you are sharing your time between machines so no one gets jealous. I have never tried to embroider but you look like you have it down!

meggie said...

It is often I have to remind myself to take a step away, & then go back calmly, to find I can find the answer to problems.
Perhaps we should all 'count to 10' more often.

Todd, Kari, Anna and Gracie said...

((SMILE)) You should write a book about all the adventures of your sewing!! You always keep me so entertained and loving what you do!! You remind me of my grandma "Mom"..... when it comes to her passion for sewing. I think it is wonderful!! Have a happy afternoon....

Kariann