Invention has two mommies

Okay, absolutely could not resist that title this morning.

It's from Necessity is the Mother of Invention...and I had two necessities that I think might have changed the way I quilt from now on. I've always puddled the quilt around me, mostly in my lap, and pushed it through the machine.

First necessity. Free motion quilting in the borders. This is another glimpse of West of Paris. I wanted to create extra motion in the quilt, so I pointed the two braided borders in opposite directions. That seemed like a pretty good idea because I was just going to outline quilt each brick a quarter inch inside the seam. Did that. Hated it. Pulled it out and just quilted in the ditch. But, I wasn't happy with that, either. It made the quilt look unevenly quilted. So, I decided to free-motion leaves on a vine over the ditch work. All well and good. I get the inner braid quilted and look at the outer braid. It points in the opposite direction, so the quilting needs to go in the opposite direction. But, that means that when I quilt the outer border, 95% of the quilt is going to be in my machine throat

I need to puddle the quilt behind the machine and pull it toward me to make this easy.

This is my quilting station. My piecing station is on the opposite side and there is a table between. This gives me plenty of room for my quilt to sit. Usually, the sewing cabinet that I'm refinishing sits on the quilting side, at my left elbow, and supports the weight of the quilt while I push it through the machine. But, my cabinet is in the garage, receiving it's finishing touches. I could have waited to work on this quilt until it was done, but just you ask a quilter not to work on something. You'll see a flurry of activity. At least with me.

So, I needed to put the weight of the quilt behind the machine and pull it toward me.

I don't remember which quilter that I follow suggested that it was easier to put the quilt behind the machine and pull it toward the quilter. I wish I could because I'd give her full credit. It is much eaiser than trying to find a place to put all that weight while it's waiting to be quilted. Now, you're thinking, doesn't he just end up with all that weight in his lap at the end of a line of quilting? Not really. The corner that you see above will come down into my lap, but before I really have to deal with the weight, it can be swuing back onto the table and it never ends up in my lap. That's going to be much more comfortable as we sweat through the rest of Indian Summer.


On a non-quilty note, about yesterday, thanks for indulging my self pity party. Parenting is hard. I found out last night that Sydney and the Spanish teacher cooked up a scheme to get Sydney out of the class. The teacher saw her sitting there looking oh, so miserable and asked her why she didn't change classes to something she'd enjoy more. Sydney said I wouldn't let her (smart kid) so the teacher called us and suggested it. I guess they thought that might be more successful.

Here's how life imitates parenting. I'm working on a project that I hate. I hate it with a purple and orange passion that burns in me from the tips of my toes to the top of my head. Yesterday my boss came up and asked how it was going and instead of my brave smile, I had a brief moment of honesty with him and as I talked about how unhappy I was, a tear rose to my eye and my voice cracked.

And, just like my response to Sydney about Spanish, his response to me was "this is the life we have now." Damned Indian practicality. But, who can argue with it?

Everybody have a great day. I'm celebrating a new bout of hopefulness. I have a bright, shiny new day. I can spend it however I want to. I don't think that sulking at my desk about my woes is going to be part of it.



sewfunquilts said...

Love your quilt and your post...about life as it is.

Coloradolady said...

This quilt is a work of art.....stunning!!!

I somehow missed your post yesterday, guess by getting ready for a short trip to Colorado, I missed this one.

In all honestly, Sydney is a NORMAL kid, doing and pulling stuff all kids do....shame on all the others who tossed her back like a doll....and I tip my hat to you two for having what it takes to raise a child and raise a child well. That is what real parents do. They do what it takes....right or wrong!!!

Hang in there.....I'll be gone for a few days and will miss ya' but will check in next week!! Have a great weekend!!

Sequana said...

Oh boy, am I ever gonna try that "puddle behind the machine and pull it forward" trick. Looks like a wonderful idea.

You know, if we all could just do what we felt better doing and never do the hard stuff - well.....we can't, can we?

Becky said...

AHA!!!!! There WAS something else going on.....but thank goodness it wasn't something darker....just sneaky!!! hahaha! Hope you get some relief from your project soon!!

Marla said...

I honestly do not know another way to quilt but puddle it behind the machine. More power to those who can roll it in a stiff roll and try to do it that way. I never could. I have a big folding table set behind my machine cabinet for this very purpose and makes all the difference in the world. Takes all the weight off the quilt and easier to get the freemotion to work.

Elizabeth said...

I just love West of Paris Texas. The quilting is gorgeous. Everybody has their own way of quilting. I do it on my dining room table and try to keep most of the quilt up there on the table. I like to roll it, though, to fit in the neck, rather than puddling. I get too much drag when I puddle. Anyway . . .

Also, I hate those moments in life when you don't want to do it but you just have to. It sucks to be a grown-up sometimes.

xo -E

Elizabeth said...

P.S. LOVE the binding.

lw said...

"This is the life we have now." Humpf!! Stupid instant karma!

The quilt is getting better and better. I've got a quilter's dream cabinet, and the puddle and pull toward you works really well for me. I think I got that from Diane Gaudynski.