Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Hey, now, what's that sound?

Progress was made on the rail fence quilt tonight. I got within 1-1/2 passes of being completely DONE meandering (on the HandyQuilter frame)......

And something went wrong with my machine! I heard this awful clunking, and my needle broke and I screeched to a halt to examine the damage. After recovering from a near heart attack (and regaining my capacity for non-profane speech) I found all the needle fragments, but the machine is still clunking and thunking, even after a new needle, a cleaning, and oiling. Something is certainly not right!

Well, that definitely did not make my evening! I went ahead and took the quilt off the frame. I can do the last row and a half on my regular machine, with feed dogs down, and the darning foot. Same results! Here it is, off the frame.

And here's a peek at the back.....I had one row that was a miserable disaster, near the top of the quilt..... (click to enlarge pix)

Yuck! It looks Horreeblay!! I've frogged that entire row and will re-meander it when I finish the last row and a half at the bottom.

Note to be added to my personal cheat sheet for machine quilting success: Always attach a 6-10 inch extra piece (baste on) at the top of a quilt to be machine quilted....it's worth the extra batting, etc, to have that 6+ inches as a practice area, getting stitches, tension, thread choices, etc, all nailed down BEFORE actually starting to stitch on the real quilt top!

After I restitch the frogged area, it's ready to be bound, and I'm going to make a label for it....I will try to remember to blog the label if it turns out well. This will be the first quilt given as a chemo comfort quilt by our Red Hat chapter, the Red Hot Sew 'n Sews. The wife of one of Michael's fellow couriers at Fed Ex is undergoing year-long treatment right now.

I think i'm going to cut out and package up a Take Five for the next one. I'll share the packaged block kits with anyone in the chapter who wants to help make it. My goal is to have a nice selection of these simple, sturdy quilts on hand to give to people undergoing chemo/radiation treatment. Seems like we are hearing about more and more people in our families, our work places, who are fighting this disease.

Hopefully, the quilts will bring some comfort, warmth, and the knowledge that we care, to those they are given to.


Yvette said...

OH MY!!! Your Meandering skills are fantastic! Somebody has been practicing. I hope you figure out your machine drama.

I am ready to make my share of blocks. If you need me to buy some fabric just let me know. I am itching for an excuse to hit M & L's.

Karene said...

Hey, my friend, you did a good job on that quilt. Good idea too about using a test piece. Maybe that's why Janet always said the long-armers require at least 4 to 6 inches all around....hmmmm....will have to ask Janet that one. Anyway, you did great !!! I love the colors and I can't wait to help on the Take 5 ! Hope the machine is ok !!!

"Queen of Vice" Karene

Jackie said...

Has the machine recovered now? Your work is awesome! So sorry it had a virus, or stomach-ache, or whatever it had! Hope it is nothing major, that requires a big-bucks-repair!! That meandering is so cool: you are a true craftswoman!!