Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Quilting without my machine

One of the FMQ blocks
While free motion quilting (FMQ) my king size quilt, I realised that my sewing machine (my Jag) needed some TLC. I clean it on the first of each month but otherwise I haven’t done any maintenance on it since I got it two years ago. It was past due. I brought it in this morning and I will hopefully get it back next week. I’m sure that many of you understand my anxiety of being without it for long.

I do have 2 Kenmore machines that are old but fine, although they will require some maintenance also. As my pile of projects to FMQ is getting higher, I really need my Jenome to be in great working order.

What should I do in the meantime?
  • I could bring one of my Kenmores upstairs and work on piecing projects. I have many to choose from.
Grandmother's Choice Blocks
These are a few of the blocks from Grandmother's Choice Block of the Week, It was created to recall the fight for women's rights. Since this year is the 100th anniversary of women obtaining the vote in many of Canada's provinces, it would be really nice to finish the quilt this year.

Street Art Quilt

This quilt is my interpretation of Street Art Quilt which appeared in the International Quilt Festival Quilt Scene magazine (2013\2014), My version is totally different that the original and I would like to make it bigger. I don't think it would take much work.

No Rules Scrappy Piecing

I have 22 very scrappy triangles that need to be set into a quilt. All I need to do is cut triangles of the same size and make the quilt!

All of the embroidery is done for my Frog Work quilt below. I just need to piece a few more blocks.

Frog embroidery

Frog Work blocks

  • I can also forget the sewing machine for a week and work on hand projects. I have a couple of these and there’s a project that I’d love to start. Since I am going away on the weekend, it would be great to have some hand work to do.

  • I also have some miscellaneous tasks like sandwiching quilts to get them ready for FMQ; frame my felting project or even clean my sewing space!

I've bought a frame - maybe it's time to see if it fits and would look good!

 What I learned:
  • I started this post by going through my blog to see what projects I could work on. I do have a list of projects that I've completed and that I'm working on but going through the blog was much more visual and fun.
  • As I was deciding on which projects to include, I had some pretty strong negative reactions to a couple of them. I guess it's not the time to go back to those yet!
  • I've got three options but these's no reason that it has to be either/or. A combination of all three would be just fine (and more likely).
  • As I look at these projects, it feels like when I'm getting ready to go on retreat and want to bring everything and will end up bringing too much! Whatever gets worked on is a bonus. There are no deadlines for any of these. 
  • I wish I hadn't mentioned the "D" word (deadline) since I realize that I have a few of them coming up at the end of the summer. But this week, I am doing like an ostrich - my head is in the sand and I refuse to think about them! I am very, very good at that :-)

So, do you have projects to finish this summer, and are you diligent about getting your machine maintained? I'd love to hear from you.

Check out the other quilting bloggers out there! I'll be linking to the following Linky Parties: 


  1. Sorry your machine is in the shop; I do know how hard it is to be without your machine. It can really throw one off trying to get projects done. You've got quite a great list of WIPs to choose from in the meantime!

  2. Thanks Christine - yes, it's rougher than I thought. I did start a hand piecing project today - so something looks like it will get done!

  3. I find myself in the unusual position right now of having several projects at once. I'm usually only working on one or two things at a time - I'm kind of a finisher. But at the moment, I have a baby quilt, a table runner, a bed quilt, and a charity quilt - oh and an art quilt, too. Unfortunately they are ALL in the quilting stage. I say unfortunately because that is so time consuming, and requires so much SITTING. Plus I have a ton of new design ideas I'm dying to try out. but I'm going to be disciplined, I've decided. I will NOT start a new one till all the currents (except maybe one of them) are quilted. Not making any promises, mind you...

    1. Hi Carrie, I'm glad to meet you - You have a lovely new website. Congrats! I used to have a lot less projects in the works but the more I quilt, the more I want to create! I think of all of the projects that I have started, I suspect only a couple will end up not finished....eventually. And the ones that get scrapped will literally get cut up into scraps to be reborn!
      I love having projects at different stages because I don`t always have the energy or interest to do certain parts of the quilting process. Finally after writing this post, I've figured out that I needed a rest from my sewing machine (I can`t believe I said that!). I have read three amazing books and am finally finishing another one. I have done a little bit of handwork and started planning a new art quilt that I've been thinking about for months. It seems that I'm now ready to choose fabrics. I just love every part of the process - at different times! I'm looking forward to reading your blog. Thanks.

  4. You have a lot of projects to choose to work on. I only have a couple to finish this summer, as there are deadlines. But thankfully, I work well under pressure! As for machine maintenance, I'm pretty diligent about cleaning after eight or ten hours of sewing. But taking in them in to the shop? Not until there's something definitely making them sick!
    Thanks for sharing on Midweek Makers

    1. Hi Susan, good luck with your deadlines. I decided to ignore mine for the last week - I guess I needed a vacation from my passion! I am looking forward to getting back to the FMQ (the machine is still in the shop) - the holiday was good but I miss it!


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