Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Needle nightmare and decision made

A peek of the back - the quilting shows up nicely... and no puckers! :D

I had nightmarish needle problems this afternoon. After I put in last night's needle, about every inch of so the thread kept breaking. The tension was correct, so I figured that somehow the needle point must have chipped. Put in a new "Schmetz Quilting 90/14" needle (what I was using all along) and still kept running into the problem. I finally figured out that it was breaking wherever there was more than 2 layers of fabric/seams. I took a guess that the needle might actually be too thick, and switched to a normal piecing needle of 80/12. That did the trick! :)

Which I find a little odd, in almost everything I've read, if you're having problems with the thread breaking, go UP the next needle size, so the thread eye is bigger. But by going down, my needle was smaller, and it didn't feel like the needle was trying to push the quilt down the needle hole, but actually piercing the fabric. Just happy that it's not giving me trouble anymore.

And I've decided about the quilt retreat... I'm not gonna go. :) I don't have many strong friendships with the ladies in the guild. And when groups tend to get bigger and noisier and chattier... I tend to pull back and corner myself, because the noise is too much for ME to be talking in. So I would just sew, exactly what I could be doing at home. Since I don't have kids, dogs or a pesky husband, I could easily make every weekend "retreats" if I wanted.

The other thing is that I enjoy smaller groups or even just two people, like my mom and I. I realized that I'm actually looking faaaaaaaaaar more forward to quilting with my mom next week instead of going to a retreat. So, I don't mind sew-a-thons at other people's houses and having a simple gathering, but retreats aren't for me right now, I have nothing to retreat from. ;)

Plus, I think my time at my parents house is going to feel "retreatish" enough... not to mention that their house is BIG enough for a retreat! If they wanted, they could fit in 13 long arm machines (including the garage) and sleep 24 ladies if they put 2 bunkbeds in each room. Too bad I can't pack some of that space in my suitcase and make my long arm dream come true a little sooner. ;)



Gail said...

Congratulations on knowing yourself well enough to know what will make you happier and not just going along with everyone else. I haven't done a retreat yet, although DH has said I should go to the next one myguild has. Everyone is encouraging me to go as I am caretaker to both DH and my mother and they feel I need the time away. I wonder, however, because when I am away, I worry how things are working out.......wonder if I'll actually enjoy myself.

Quilt Mommy said...

Thanks Leah, I don't know why but I thought you'd like that bright firey quilt I'm working on - looks colorful and cheerful like so many quilts I see you making. It's looking even better now that I have the border on it...but I'm going to wait to show it off until I get the quilting in the borders done! :)

I don't blame you about the retreat. I bet you will have a great time sewing with your Mom!

Kathy Wagner said...

That is awesome that you figured out the quilting problem...good for you for sticking with it! It's so frustrating some times, eh? So glad to hear that it's going better now.

Zegi said...

I think I would feel the same way at a retreat. I haven't formed any close bonds to people in my guild or at my local quilt shop, and the only quilter in my family & friend circle has arthritis so bad that she doesn't do it anymore. I have a hard enough time going to quilt shows and meetings without feeling tied in, how would I feel for an entire weekend?! Probably rotten, so why go?

QuiltingFitzy said...

I found that I was using two different type bobbins, they were "a silly milimeter" in difference. (You're too young to remember the commercial that came from, lol.)

Once I figured that out, I pitched the odd ones. Gosh, it took me awhile to figure it out!

This is going to be SO pretty!!!

Chrissie said...

Way to go, Idaho!! Looking so very good! BTW, do you want a visitor when you come out this way?
catch ya later!

Clare said...

Thanks for the tip about changing the needle. I have been having thread breaking problems at the beginning of the run so shall take a look and see what can be done. Either that or it could be the bobbin. We shall see. Well done you on deciding what suits you best and not being forced into something which isn't you, if you get what I mean.

Dawn said...

Yes, I use 10 needles even! But I use the aurofil or 60 mettler which is very thin. And another trick - use the microtec needles and not the universal, they have sharper points and pierce the fabric better. It is looking great! I'd come retreat with yhou if I could!