Spring in Texas

I was nervous when my son’s teacher called me today to tell me he was sick.  Visions of H1N1 danced in my head.  However, it ended up working quite nicely.  We ended up at home with a low grade fever and a tummy ache (but no puking!).  Just enough ailments to slow him down.  Sneaky me picked up movie rentals and sprite for our quilting party.

We ended up spending many, many hours in the sewing room.  I should feel bad, right?  Nope.  Cartwheels in my head.  We opened the window because the weather was incredible.  It’s spring in Texas right now.  Everything was dead during our real spring since we had a drought, but now, everything is green.  It’s glorious.  And I just love getting to quilt during daylight hours– so scandalous!

While I was machine quilting, my son Ethan was using scraps to “make a quilt” on the design wall.  The design wall kept him busy while I quilted, so if it serves no other purpose than this, I’m thrilled.

While Ethan was designing his quilt, I was machine quilting a jelly roll quilt using Charisma by Chez Moi.   The pattern is a modified version of “In the City” by Calico Printworks .

This made me think of some of my favorite machine quilting tips to pass on to you:

  • Use lots of lotion until your hands are tacky.  Once your hands soak it all in, then lotion up again.  It just makes it easier to move the fabric.  I use L’Occitane hand cream because it feels so good.
  • Use good posture (don’t want to get a quilting injury!); don’t hunch.  Also, keep Biofreeze onhand for your muscles.
  • Invest your time in pinning well.
  • Start in the middle & work your way out.
  • If you’re stippling, think about puzzle pieces.
All I do is stipple, pretty much.  This all started about 6 years ago.  I had accumulated a ton of quilt tops and was tired of paying people to do my quilting.  So, during the Christmas holidays, I was determined to figure it out.  And I quilted about 6 quilts in a row over a 2 or 3 day period.  Unfortunately, all I do is stipple.  If I ever make something smaller, I’ll try another technique, but all I make are large lap-size quilts these days.

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