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Saturday, October 27, 2012

Oops, Out of Commission for a Few Days

All my photos will be below this writing today. I had to put my sewing machine in the shop to get it cleaned and serviced before I get down to business. I make sure my machine is serviced once a year. I use it a lot and if it broke down I wouldn't be able to replace it easily and I don't have a second machine. So keeping my machine in good condition it really important.
I also had to get some new needles for my machine. I am going to be sewing on sheer and tulle fabric. So the best needle size to use for that kind of work is a 60.  You can also use a number 70. It will break less but I think a number 60 needle goes through the fabric better. They break easily so when you are using them just go slow and steady. To do free motion stitching you need to keep your machine at a consistent speed and move the fabric slowly and smoothly under your darning foot. If you practice you will get the hang of it and get into a workable rhythm.
When I bought the sewing machine I have I got a great deal on it. I got a 600 dollar machine for 300 dollars. I love it and am grateful to have a machine so that I can continue to work.
I have my two quilts on foam core boards and I have my cellophane drawing attached to the foam core boards  with clips. I have my ,what I call inspiration board, set up . On the board I have pictures of Hawaii, waterfalls, trees, flowers and mountains - anything that will help me inspired and focused on what I am working on. I have my original  black and white drawing up on my design wall. I make note of any ideas I get while working on my quilt. For example, I have written down how I want to construct the hanging sleeve for these quilts.
I am going to make a new type of hanging sleeve for my round quilts. The one problem that hanging quilts have is that they have a tendency to flop forward on the top section of the quilt. You usually are asked to have a 4 in. sleeve on your quilt when you enter shows but with a round quilt having a 4 in . sleeve does not fix the problem of the quilt falling forward at the top. So I have come up with a plan to solve the problem. I have seen a couple of other artists' ideas to solve the problem but they have not worked for me. I am hoping this idea will work. I think it will. Well I will see.
 I have a roll of freezer paper out to use on the fabric pieces I will be cutting. I still have to get out some water-soluble stabilizer and iron-on tearaway stabilizer. I will explain how I use those items when I use them later on. It is a good idea to get all the materials you think you will need to work before you start making a quilt. It saves a lot of time and angst later on.
I took a few photos of my setup. I do this every time I make a quilt. It helps me stay organized.
I made the sun and moon for my quilts. For the moon I took two pieces of fabric and  painted one with a black medium tipped marking pen, put them together and backed them with five layers of tulle. For the sun I painted white cotton  fabric with fabric marking pencils and layered  it with one layer of sheer nylon fabric and one layer of orange net. Both of these will be sewn on with a number 60 needle using free motion stitching.
Well here are the photos of my set up. I am hoping to get a good amount of work done today.This is the needle I will use and a picture of my machine.