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 I gave it a try by Finisher

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Number of posts : 297
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PostSubject: I gave it a try by Finisher   Thu Sep 11, 2008 7:00 pm

Title: I gave it a try
Post by: finisher on July 03, 2008, 07:07:16 AM
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OK..so..I thought I'd try some machine quilting. I had pieces left over from the Flowering Snowball and thought I should do something with them and get them off my work table. I sewed them into a throw size. I had some fusable cotton batting here..and thought that would work well. I got the layers pressed and ready to go. I started by sewing in the ditch along the sashings, then went to each block and stitched 1/4: away from each seam, then added hearts in the largest area of the blades in the design, then stitched a little twisted design on the sashings, followed by a cable border. My machine has the computer control panel at the front of the right hand side..and as I was wrestling the bulk of fabric through that little area I kept bumping the touch pad with my knuckles! Then I had to reset the darn thing. :1087: When I stitched the sashing area it pulled the fabric out of square a bit..but quilted out. :wink: The biggest thing I learned..DO NOT DO SO MANY STOPS AND STARTS! I quilted this throw like I would hand quilt it..but with machine quilting you need to plan quilting that is pretty much a continuous line. once I had the quilt bound I sat and pulled the threads through from the back so I could tie them off and bury them in the batting. I think I spent about 8 hours doing that? :1087: It took almost as long as all of the quilting. My final result..not too bad. Not of the quality I would use as a gift..but good enough for a use it up quilt!


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: Texasmusicmom on July 03, 2008, 07:32:39 AM
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Good for you! Sounds like you were much more successful than I at my first machine quilting job! (A 25th anniversery banner for my preschool.) Wrestling the bulk still is my biggest concern......I was quilting around pictures on the banner and it kept sliding around. I finally got it right...so everyone liked the banner. The banner is only throw sized, so I'm in awe of those of you out there who manage queen and king sized quilts in regular machines. Wow. I am really interested in the quilt as you go techniques....just to avoid the bulk thing until I get more experienced.


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: QBee - Mary Ann on July 03, 2008, 07:47:06 AM
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Finisher - Once again I feel like I don't even belong on the same planet as some of you! Your first-time machine quilting is probably better than any of mine will ever be! :sad: Since my brain knows more than my hands seem to be good at, I do know this...many (maybe most) machine quilters don't manually tie off their threads. Instead they start and stop with a few teeny-tiny stitches. If you haven't tried that, perhaps you want to see how that works for you. By the way, I'd gladly take that quilt were you to gift it to me! :grin: QBee


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: quilton on July 03, 2008, 08:57:20 AM
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That looks great finisher.
I'm just going to start putting a quilt through today. Haven't done one in awhile but its not big so hoping I won't have any trouble. They tell me practice makes perfect. Hopefully my brain is working in rhythm with my hands. If I do well today, I may do more.
I was told the same thing QB. Take teeny-tiny stitiches to start and it fastens the end of the thread. I'm trying that today.


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: golo on July 03, 2008, 09:01:56 AM
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I think you did amazingly well for a first time.... When I start on the machine I pull the thread to the front... do a couple stitches in place and go.. I cut off the threads and done... I couldn't see any flaws... I don't think perfection is meant to be in quilts... Keep it up... :yahoo:


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: BearFoot on July 03, 2008, 09:04:21 AM
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I thought your quilt looked terrific...I took a look at the backside picture and you did an amazing job of machine quilting for the first time machine quilting! :afro:


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: hummerlou on July 03, 2008, 09:50:04 AM
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Wow, you put me to shame, Finisher!!!! What a wonderful job!!!!


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: nuffsaid on July 03, 2008, 10:17:03 AM
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What a nice job! Did you use a walking foot! Did you end up with any little tiny pleats or tucks where the stitching crossed other stitching lines? I love the colors, and the quilt is so pretty. Carolyn


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: FiberBabble on July 03, 2008, 10:18:07 AM
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Finisher, it looks great! I sure wouldn't turn it down if you gave it as a gift (coughcoughmybirthdaycoughcoughthiscoughmonthcough).
:angel:

When I first read that you used fusible batting, I cringed. I'm pretty anti-fusible unless it's for placemats. It might be that there won't be so much wrestling with a 'normal' batting. The inxpensive poly batts (the thinner the better) are okay, and the natural fibers/blends battings do quite well.

One thing, if you do 'utility quilting' - some in the ditch or next to the ditch quilting - in places that will anchor the top to the backing, you can do your fancy quilting top to bottom or left to right; you don't need to start in the center and work out.

Smitten There's probably lots more, but that's all I have (for now) in the unsolicited advice column.

Great job! Be proud of yourself. Just think how much faster you're going to be able to finish that stack of UFO's!!! :2funny:


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: finisher on July 03, 2008, 10:57:59 AM
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I didn't have the little puckers where you cross a line of stitching..which I was afraid of..but maybe that's because I used the fusable batting? It really holds everything in place pretty good..except I had to re-iron the borders. By the time I got to them they had been pulled and tugged enough that the layers weren't sticking together any more. I think pin basting might be more likely to cause puckers? I didn't use a walking foot..or lower the feed dogs. I just sort of steered the quilt where I wanted it. My hearts aren't very smooth..but those might have been better if I had lowered the feed dogs and free motioned it? When I stitched the longest line of sashing I pulled the fabric out of square. I dunno if dropping the feed dogs or a walking foot might have been the best way to avoid that? I sent away for a darning foot so I'll work up my courage to play with that. Maybe I'll just take some scrap batting and and ugly fabric and sew just to get the feel of it? I didn't know I could stitch in place or do little stitches to avoid dealing with those threads. Pulling them through, tieing them, then pulling through in to the batting was a major p.i.t.a.!!! I threaded the needle more times than if I had hand quilted I'm sure. :1087: I had the fusable cotton batting on hand here. It softens when you wash the quilt.
I stopped into Joann's today (sale :wink: ) and looked and they only carry fusable poly batting. My experience with poly over the years has been that the batting fibers migrate out over time and you end up with a quilt that has little or no batting. I try to avoid poly. Maybe it's gotten better over the years..because that's mostly what Joann's carries..and I would think they would stock whatever is selling best? Undesided


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: Pawstoquilt on July 03, 2008, 01:16:25 PM
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Finisher you did a fantastic job on your quilt :afro:. I really like it. Actually, I think I am the one who should get it--don't you :2funny:. Don't know if I will ever have nerve to try it or not. It wears my shoulders out to wrestle it around.


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: finisher on July 03, 2008, 01:28:12 PM
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Well..it was kind of hard on my back..but that might be because I was using different muscles than I usually do? OR because I was tensing up. Every once in a while I would remember to drop my shoulders..which were up around my ears! :1087: I don't think I'd want to machine quilt anything bigger than the throw. It was too hard to wrestle. :wink:


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: betweens on July 03, 2008, 03:12:10 PM
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Finisher.. you have done it again.. you have taught yourself to machine quilt and done an excellent job.. but don't get used to it.. your hand quilting is exquisite and if you were making my quilt I would wait 10years to receive one of your hand quilts..

your machine quilting though was excellent.. love the cable on the boarders.. it is not an easy task.

Deb


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: TxMaryQuilts on July 03, 2008, 03:19:44 PM
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Wow, where to start.

The quilt top is gorgeous.
I love the yellow sashing with the colors in the blocks.
Your machine quilting is really really good.
IT IS TOO gift quality.
Yes I think you will like dropping the feed dogs to do things like hearts.
Isn't it funny when you remember to drop your shoulders, that if you had a shell you would be a turtle!

Really great job. Smitten


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: FiberBabble on July 03, 2008, 04:44:54 PM
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Finisher,
When I machine quilt I lower my chair a bit (but that might have more to do with my eyes rather than my shoulders!).
I've always got some noise in the background to keep me from thinking too much when I'm quilting (usually it's an audio book). When doing free motion quilting, especially if the motif/pattern is marked, it helps to go on auto-pilot.
I normally use Warm 'N Natural batting (from JoAnn's, with a coupon!); it's thin and fairly lightweight.
I spray-baste with the stuff in the pink & white can (!). For me, using pins is just asking for puckers and it's a pita to stop and remove them when I'm on a roll.
What do you have for table to the left of your needle? Do you have enough support? What do you do with the part of the quilt in front of the machine - is it in your lap? Sometimes tossing it (or part of it) over your shoulder helps.
Not dropping your feed dogs is part of why it was such a trial to wrestle with the quilt. Once you get your darning/quilting foot, it will become easier, though you'll be learning a whole new way of manipulating your quilt.
Smitten
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PostSubject: Re: I gave it a try by Finisher   Thu Sep 11, 2008 7:00 pm

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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: quilton on July 03, 2008, 04:58:05 PM
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Well finisher would you like some more advice? When I machine quilt I too use a fusible bat. I like it because it doesn't shift when I free motion. Today it has been going through the machine beautifully. I stop every once in awhile and sort of roll my shoulders around in circles and then start again. I tense up but I think most people do unless they have had years of practice........which I haven't.
I don't spray baste as my husband has asthma and the fumes would knock him over and he may not get up. I can't afford to loose him yet!!!!!!

Machine quilting is fast and for those projects that are small they are fantastic......wallhangings, baby quilts, etc. Don't stop hand quilting....I think its becoming a dying art. I don't hand quilt, wish I could, but a needle and thread just don't get along with me with it comes to doing it.

Your quilt looks fantastic. You did a great job. Oh, another tip......put on some music you really, really like. I love to listen to my Rod Stewart CD. It helps to give me a rhythm......someone else suggested a good glass of red wine, but I can't afford to fall asleep over my machine.

Good luck and yes, do practice on scraps. Over and over and over again. The more you do the better you will get.


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: finisher on July 03, 2008, 06:13:30 PM
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Thanks for the additional pointers. I will NEVER give up hand quilting..but for some things the machine quilting will be a nice way to get things done faster. Dropping the feed dogs and using the darning foot will be a whole new thing. It will be up to me to do all of the steering..whereas with the feed dogs up they do part of the work? I guess that's where the music and wine come in handy?With this one the little setting stones are not square..I guess I stretched the fabric as I sewed. (maybe if I drink the wine now..I won't care?)Other than that..everything else turned out pretty good..but my critical eye goes right to those off square squares! LOL :1087:
I sew at the dining room table(which has stuff piled on it..I'm a piler :smiley: ) As I fed the quilt through I knocked stuff off the table. :1087: I think if I had a set up where the sewing machine was flush with the table it would be better..or maybe have DH make a little L shaped table with short legs I can put to the left of and behind the machine? I just had the quilt puddled in my lap..but it wasn't a big quilt..so it was workable.
I have some spray basting stuff but I think mine is in a blue can? I've had it for a long time. I think that might be a good thing to try..if I can do it outside. I guess that means I'll try it when it's not windy out. I have asthma too..so I shouldn't use the spray inside.

Quilton..do you use the fusible cotton or poly? Joann's is the closest store to me and they only carry the poly now. I like cotton batts better. I'm concerned about fiber migration with the poly. I have quilts that have been dragged around and washed a bazillion times that were made with poly batts..and there is no batting in them any more. Maybe if I use the spray with warm and natural it would be like the fusible cotton? I guess like with everything we have to try different things to see which works best for us?
I have so much to learn!
Before I started machine quilting I went to youtube.com and searched for machine quilting videos. I saw one that was fascinating!I just want to quilt like that! :2funny:
http://youtube.com/watch?v=Yb_dj5lwP-s&feature=related



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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: nuffsaid on July 03, 2008, 11:27:09 PM
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I just watched that video--what a hoot to see it sped up like that. She makes things look so easy. I would have liked to have seen what that quilt looked like at the end. Thanks for sharing that! I am getting my courage up to try some free motion quilting. It isn't as easy as it looks--I know I will need to practice making smooth motions. And, I have discovered, working on a smaller piece is not at all the same thing as working on a bedside quilt . . .Carolyn


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: quilton on July 04, 2008, 06:04:44 AM
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Finisher, I use Hobbs Heirloom fusible bats (80/20 blend). I buy it either off the roll or a queen size....whichever I can get. My QS sells it, but that isn't much help to you cause you're in Ohio and I'm in Ontario. When we would go to PA I would get 4 or 5 fusibles at Zooks Fabrics in Intercouse. I know they will ship and their prices are the best anywhere!!!!!! Their phone number is 717-768-8153. You can ask for Sandy or Herb. They do not have an internet site.
I'm like you. I don't like the poly bats. I don't like machine quilting them either. When I take a quilt to make up for the guild if they hand me one with poly bat, I give them the bat back and use what I have a home. Saves me frustration.
Oh and it is recommended that you use the spray outside, but as you know with our winters that is next to impossible. I don't have a garage, but if I did I would use it there. Fiber uses a brand called Sullivan's and darned if I can remember the name of the other brand.
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PostSubject: Re: I gave it a try by Finisher   Thu Sep 11, 2008 7:01 pm

Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: finisher on July 04, 2008, 06:43:57 AM
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Thanks for that info Quilton. I have heard of Zooks before..it looks like I need to Google them and see if DH would want to make a trip? :rolleyes: I still want to try the spray..what the heck I have it here on hand? :wink: I think it's June Tailor brand? I KNOW I like the fusable cotton batts (what I had was probably Hobbs). We have a garage..but DH uses it for his go-kart building. There's grease all over the floor and I hate to even go in there..so that's not an option!

Carolyn..there are several of those sped up videos. I really get a kick out of them..and it looks so easy! It looks like we both have a bit of practicing to do before we can master the free motion? Of course..she's using a long arm and I think that's completley different?


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: TxMaryQuilts on July 04, 2008, 06:55:58 AM
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I just read a tip on practicing free motion. In order to save on fabric and batting--use two pieces of felt. It gives you thickness, you can go over and over it with different colored threads, and it is cheap.

Thanks for the video link, I hadn't seen that one. Yeah I wish I could quilt like that too! :afro: :grin:


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: FiberBabble on July 04, 2008, 07:56:29 AM
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Quote from: finisher on July 04, 2008, 06:43:57 AM
Carolyn..there are several of those sped up videos. I really get a kick out of them..and it looks so easy! It looks like we both have a bit of practicing to do before we can master the free motion? Of course..she's using a long arm and I think that's completley different?


The longarm is a completely different animal, as I'm learning! But I think that Sharon Schamber, who did the youtube video, uses a domestic sewing machine. I went to her site http://www.sharonschamber.com/ (http://www.sharonschamber.com/) to see if I could find out if there's something special about her machine (other than it's turned 90 degrees), but I couldn't.

The reason I say/think that (other than I think that I actually FOUND info about her setup at one time!) is that she's moving the quilt - not the machine. On a long arm, you move the machine.

Now that I've opened my mouth and removed all doubt - can someone out there confirm or deny?? (Yes, you guessed it... not enough caffeine...)

Oh! And thanks Quilton for coming up with the Sullivan's brand name. I'm sure I could have figured that out if I'd gotten up off my backside and gone to check. Of course, by the time I got into my sewing room I would have gotten distracted...

I'm not a fan of June Tailor spray (what my Jo Ann Fabs carries). It seems to be gummy, somehow. It's probably just me, of course. The Sullivan's is pretty spendy up front ($13), but I can get a LOT of quilts basted with just one can. Since I rarely do bed-sized quilts, I can't give a comparison, but I would guess I can get 30 or more lap quilts and smaller from one can.

(Wow, that is a total shot in the dark... ooohhh, Shot in the Dark.... Cafe Americano with an extra shot of espresso or two....)


(http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e268/fiberbabble/Buttons%20and%20Icons/cup-coffee-smiley.jpg)


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: QBee - Mary Ann on July 04, 2008, 08:17:50 AM
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Fiberbabble - Aha! Did we just learn the secret to your amazing productivity?? "Cafe Americano with an extra shot of espresso or two"??? :grin: QBee


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: finisher on July 04, 2008, 10:05:03 AM
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In the first video..there's just a quick look towards the beginning that looks like the machine says JUKI? I did a bit more looking and found that Sharon uses a Tin Lizzie 18. She's done several videos showing how to use it..including this one..which really boggles my mind! :1087:
http://youtube.com/watch?v=bHma1d2kedo&feature=related


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: finisher on July 04, 2008, 10:07:26 AM
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And this one..
http://youtube.com/watch?v=wDjg9-XAvHQ&feature=related


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: sallyandtilly on July 04, 2008, 10:18:43 AM
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It looks good to me. I always bump my control panel too. I wish there was a cover for it.


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: finisher on July 04, 2008, 10:43:26 AM
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That's an interesting idea. Hmmm...I wonder if placing something up against it would work..like a piece of acrylic..or a cutting ruler? I may have to play around with that a bit too. It's really irritating isn't it?


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: tlcquiltnut on July 04, 2008, 10:45:39 AM
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:afro: That is a great job finisher...my shoulders and neck got sore the first time I did it too but I let them heal and did another and wasn't sore after that....
OH , BTW, IF YOU DO NOT REALLY WANT TO KEEP IT......I VOLUTEER TOO! :afro:


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: FiberBabble on July 04, 2008, 04:40:50 PM
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Quote from: finisher on July 04, 2008, 10:05:03 AM
In the first video..there's just a quick look towards the beginning that looks like the machine says JUKI? I did a bit more looking and found that Sharon uses a Tin Lizzie 18. She's done several videos showing how to use it..including this one..which really boggles my mind! :1087:
http://youtube.com/watch?v=bHma1d2kedo&feature=related

hmmmmm, yeah. Now that I've gone back and looked (AGAIN :smiley: ), the head of the machine does look like an industrial machine. But she's moving the quilt and not the machine - that's where I was led astray. Maybe it's because I'm working on learning my friend's mid-arm (Nolting Fun Quilter) and it's SUCH a learning curve to move the machine rather than the quilt!

Like I said, I opened my mouth and removed all doubt.... :grin:

I was just up at my friend's house, where we turned her 60" frame into a 105" frame. THAT was a barrel o'laughs. Actually when I was crawling under the frame and then couldn't get up because my butt was stuck, it WAS a barrel o'laughs - at least for my friend :embarassed: After setting it up and then RE-setting it up - we both had some sort of dyslexic fit and read the instructions wrong - I got a baby quilt loaded. Then I was exhausted and came home. (http://www.freesmileys.org/smileys/smiley-sleep024.gif) (http://www.freesmileys.org)(plum tuckered)

Now that I've had a chance to recharge (there was a brownie involved), I'm off to work on, uh..... something.


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: TxMaryQuilts on July 05, 2008, 06:15:54 AM
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:2funny: :2funny: :2funny:

Been there and got stuck there.


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: FiberBabble on July 05, 2008, 07:26:28 AM
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We interrupt this thread for a short-term hijacking....


(http://www.mycraftivityshop.com/images/large/Z0164.jpg) (http://www.mycraftivityshop.com/product/7/inspiration-creativity)

:2funny: :2funny:


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: hummerlou on July 05, 2008, 08:10:41 AM
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:2funny: :2funny: :2funny:


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Title: Re: I gave it a try
Post by: finisher on July 05, 2008, 08:39:50 AM
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LOL! I bet your friend was happy you were there to help..even if your butt got stuck. :2funny:

I thought the Juki was a long arm type thing..but I've never seen anybody move the quilt like that either..so it is confusing? :1087:

My DIL is a real coffee fan. We got her a coffee mug that looks sort of like a beaker and has the caffeine molecule printed on it..and a T-shirt thats says:Powered by caffeine. She loves both of them. There was a time that "they" were saying that coffee wasn't good for us..but since then there's been a big change in thinking on that. DIL and I send each other articles about it when we run across them. :wink:
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