Sunday, September 28, 2014

Stitch-in-the-Ditch Practice

Funny thing: even stitch-in-the-ditch needs practice.

Just this month I pinned the quilt sandwich for the red/black/pink baby quilt that has been one of my PIGS (Projects in Grocery Sacks--thanks to for the acronym!) for a couple years.

I started stitching in the ditch around each block, as a precursor for FMQ (free-motion quilting).  And some of the stitching was most excellent.

But sometimes I couldn't keep the needle in the ditch.


What?  You mean to tell me that even perfectly straight stitching using a walking foot can go awry?  I'm sunk!  There's just no way that my FMQ skills are up to the challenge of this project.  Now what?

Found the perfect book!  Foolproof Machine Quilting by Mary Mashuta. I can keep using my walking foot, and just quilt in straight lines and gentle curves.  I never thought about all the designs that can be made with simple curves and pivots.  Really great ideas in this book.

I really like this pattern for the borders.  It's just made out of mirroring a scallop pattern, and echo-stitching inside the curves, using the edge of the walking foot as a width guide.

Here is my sketching of this idea on a photocopy of the quilt. Do I like it with more curves? Or less?  I'm still deciding... but at least I have A Plan.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Where have I been?

Just noticed that it's been a whole month since I posted anything, so here goes...

School started.  I am busier than I have ever, ever been in terms of teaching. 

This song has been playing in my head for a few days - "All these years" by Mac McAnally

YouTube link (for the embedded video)

Why this song?  Because of some inspired lyrics:

All these years, where have I been?
I've been down the road to work and back again.

All these years, what have I done?
I made your supper and your daughter and your son.

Applesauce: not quite supper, but definitely took some time to make

Yeah, I've been "down the road to work" a lot.  And that whole "made your supper" has taken up quite a bit of time; along with laundry, taking care of the puppies, and paying the bills.

Things have happened.  They just haven't been documented.  I have missed writing, so I'm trying to come back.