Sunday, February 20, 2011

A Gift

About two weeks ago I received a phone call from the quilt store where I bought three sewing machines in the last ten years: a Janome SchoolMate (a light machine for ease in travel to quilting groups), a Janome 6500 (a super nice machine!), and my latest, the wonderful "Horizon" with its 11 inch throat. They had a gift for me, and would hold it until I could pick it up.

Yesterday the weather was very cold, but clear and sunny, and we were able to go to Red Deer to pick up the "gift" and do a little shopping. I received a very fine wheeled tote for my Horizon, a box of 12 spools of good quilting cotton thread, and a new version of the 1/4" foot for the Horizon.

Today I was able to try out the new 1/4" foot, and I am delighted with it! I was having trouble sewing straight over intersections with my wonderful new machine. And the new version of the 1/4" foot totally solved that problem.

This is really important in my current project, which involves making at least thirty-eight 12-1/2" blocks for the sides and bottom of a quilt. Each block is made up of sixty-four 2" squares, so that's a lot of

This photo shows my latest block in progress. It's laid out on my cutting table, next to the little June Taylor Cut n Press pad. I use the little travel iron for pressing small seams as I go, and each and every seam is pressed before sewing the next row. I give it a little spritz with a water bottle, and press the seam flat before pressing it to one side.

Underneath the cutting table you can just glimpse the new wheeled tote. I don't intend to take my Horizon out very often--because the SchoolMate is so
handy for that.

Here's one of the first blocks I put together and it's pretty helter-skelter. I was just making two patches, four patches, etc. Now that I've made a few more blocks, I'm getting a method down pat.

I usually find that as I progress through a project I find better ways of doing things.
I'm now sewing in horizontal rows, putting the squares together by twos, then by fours,
and finally, by eights. Then the horizontal rows are sewn together. I'm careful about which way I press each seam so that they nest nicely against each other.

I've decided never to rip out on these blocks, just to do my very best and accept how all the intersections turn out. Most are pretty satisfactory so far. And it's taking about one hour to complete the sewing on a block. There are ten blocks finished now.

There are lots of hours ahead working on this project, but I find that just doing it, block after block works. Kind of like putting one foot in front of the other on a long journey. Eventually you reach the end!


  1. Holy moly! That project is intricate! All of those tiny squares sewn together. You have some serious patience. ;)

    Can't wait to see the finished product!

  2. Patient or crazy? Maybe some of both!