Happy Valentine’s day!

I hope you’re all having a wonderful Valentine’s.  It’s not just a day for couples.  It’s also a good day to just celebrate all kinds of love.  Rob and I exchanged cards, Sydney and I exchanged cards.  I’ve wished happy Valentine’s to a couple very surprised single friends that didn’t think anyone would.  Sydney’s valentine at school is her best friend. 

It’s just a good day to say, hey, I care.  And, that can’t help but benefit any relationship.

I had several questions yesterday. 

Lindaroo asked if I was doing my ditchwork free motion and yes, I am.


She also asked how I was staying in the ditch and I can only say that’s from a whole lot of practice.  And, sometimes I drift out of the ditch and if it’s bad enough, I stop and pick it out and start again.  Can’t always be helped.  But, mostly, I put my tongue between my teeth and stick the tip of it out of my mouth, like you’re supposed to do when you go fishing, and I knit my brows together, and I quilt real slow.  I counted my stitches to be able to tell how slow.  Now, you’re used to watching people that put the pedal to the metal and go fast.  If you count a second as the time it takes to think “one-one-thousand”, then I am quilting about 2.5 stitches per second.  Not very fast.  But, I have a boatload of control over where that needle is coming down and can sometimes lift my foot off the pedal quick enough to avoid a mistaken stitch.

Yes, it takes forever.  But, less time than picking it out and putting it in again would.

The other question was why they stopped making the two spool machines.  That’s also about machine speed.  I don’t actually know the answer, but the most plausible answer I’ve read was that the hook takes a very long time to get around the whole spool.  That was fine on a treadle, where the machine can’t go very fast, but it didn’t work with electric motors that could go much faster. 

The lady on the internet that seems the most knowledgeable uses hers on a treadle and she gets that thing going really fast and it does just fine.  I converted mine to an electric motor and the machine can handle as much speed as the motor can give it.

And, if you want one of these, couple things to make sure of.  MAKE SURE IT HAS THE SPOOL CANISTER.  The only spool canister I’ve ever seen sell on ebay, without the machine, sold for over $300.  I paid $75 for my machine and it might have had free shipping.  It was rusted pretty much on the bottom of the machine, including the rods there, and the canister.  I spent some time cleaning all that up and making the machine work again.  It also had a bent rod and was locked, but I was able to straighten it.  You have to watch for them.  It took me well over a year to find mine.  They can also be disguised as regular vintage National machines, so watch the bobbin winder and if it’s long enough to fit a spool on, ask the seller questions about the bobbin and see if it’s the rotary bobbin or the spool canister.  AND MAKE SURE THE CANISTER IS THERE!

Be well.  Lane 


lw said...

Now I'm picturing you sewing with a face like this:

Over a year before a two spool National came up? I'll remind myself to be patient, and I'll make sure to ask about the bobbin-spool case.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Rebecca Grace said...

Happy Valentine's Day, Lane! Would you ever consider posting a video tutorial? Maybe bribe Sydney to be your videographer? I would love to actually be able to watch some of the processes you describe, like how you stitch in the ditch free motion, how you repair a machine quilted line of stitching when you take out a mistake, and how these cool vintage sewing machines work. Have a great day!

Becky said...

Happy Valentine's Day to you, Rob, and Miss Sydney! I hope you know that every time I see that you are working on my favorite quilt I get all giddy!! I send much encouragement and love your way!!

lindaroo said...

Thank you for addressing my questions! Now I know, I need to s-l-o-w d-o-w-n when I'm doing the ditch work on my quilts. Really, there's no need to be in a hurry, is there?!

Hazel said...

I second the video I would love to watch as you FM .Thanks to your advice I to like to go slow and have control, over speed .

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Elizabeth said...

Valentine's Day is such a let-down if you're focused on all of your romantic dreams coming true on one day. I like to celebrate the day like you -- sharing the love with friends, kids, neighbors, etc.

xo -E