Thursday, March 13, 2014

Marking and Quilting

I've been using the chalk pencil and the air erasable marker to mark small sections of my quilt before I start a session of machine quilting. The air erasable marker lasts for more than one session before it fades off into no marks at all. The chalk pencil will brush off as I work and I have several times had to refresh the marks right before I stitch an particular area. Annoying as that might be, I'd rather the marks be too transient than permanent.

There is a huge fatigue factor. I'm a beginner, and I'm more tense than I wish I were. I don't have the muscle memory yet, though I can tell it is improving. I work very slowly, so I spend more time tensed up per pattern repeat than when working faster. Do I want to speed up? Certainly! I'm just in no rush to do so. I'd rather practice accuracy slowly than disaster at high speed. 

  • Repositioning my hands very frequently helps.
  • Making sure that the quilt is not falling off the table helps.
  • Planning ahead so I don't have to sew accurately 'backwards' helps.
  • Working in short sessions with significant breaks between them helps.
There are 244 pattern repeats on the quilt. The first day I tried, I completed three. I stopped after I got two of the scrolls upside down. Yesterday, I managed to complete 6. Today I did 10, and they look better than the first 9. By the time this quilt is completed, I should have the pattern stitch perfect.

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