Just to recap (and to keep myself honest!), these were the weekly goals I set for myself last Tuesday:
Last Tuesday's Weekly To-Do List:
Write and schedule publication of my first linky party post for next Tuesday Continue to spread the word about the new linky party
- Trim excess batting & backing from Spirit Song
- Digitize, machine embroider, & hand stitch Spirit Song label to back of quilt
- Make binding for Spirit Song, machine stitch to front of quilt, & begin hand stitching binding to the backing
Hmmm... To paraphrase the iconic ballad by Meatloaf, "...two out of five ain't bad!" I haven't touched Spirit Song since I finished quilting it, because I had blocks in progress for my Moda Modern Building Blocks/Beware the Ishmaelites sampler quilt and I wanted to at least finish cutting fabrics for these blocks before I cleared off the cutting table to make room for trimming Spirit song. I DID get my inaugural LAL (Long Arm Learning) linky party post written up and published on time, featuring an interview with quilter Cheryl Degan, and I'm delighted to see that readers are already linking up. Yay! The LAL post will be open for linking up until Friday at midnight, with a new linky party opening up again the following Tuesday. Please join us by linking your machine quilting post here if you haven't done so already. And now, back to my goals for this week.
Here are the things I accomplished last week that were NOT on last week's list:
- I pieced FIVE new blocks for my Moda Modern Building Blocks/Beware the Ishmaelites quilt, and rearranged the blocks on my design wall to approximate where they will be in the final quilt layout. See my design wall photo above, and my EQ8 rendering of what the whole quilt will look like below.
- I have two more blocks for this quilt printed up, cut out, and ready to be foundation paper pieced today.
- I have one more block for this quilt that I've printed up (see below) -- rotary cutting instructions to rough cut my fabrics with a generous 3/8" seam allowance for foundation paper piecing, foundation paper piecing patterns printed on newsprint, and a card stock template printed for cutting out the large orange QSTs (quarter square triangles) for this block. I cut out all of the purple triangles for this block and some of the green ones. I still need to cut out the rest of the green triangles, all of the white triangles, the light blue center square, and the giant orange triangles.
- Found a program in the Mac App store for watermarking and resizing images in large batches and figured out how to use it
- Registered the hashtag #longarmlearning for those who are linking up via Instagram, Twitter, and various other social media platforms
- Decided to feature the work of other quilters in my linky party as frequently as I can. Discovered Cheryl's work in a Facebook group, reached out to her, and arranged for an interview
- Test drove a Q24 long arm machine for 2 1/2 hours at my local Bernina dealer, and fell in LOVE!
- Spent a ridiculous amount of time writing up a thorough For Sale listing of my current APQS Millennium long arm machine and listing it for sale in the APQS Forum, on Facebook Marketplace, and attempting to list it for sale on Craig's List as well
- Got distracted by a ridiculous feud with the self-appointed Craig's List police in their "Why Was My Listing Flagged For Removal" forum. It seems my Craig's list ad looked/sounded too professional to be a For Sale By Owner ad, and these people were telling me that I needed to relist it in the For Sale By Dealer category. Which, of course, I cannot do because I am NOT an authorized APQS dealer... I wasted way too much time arguing with these people, who had a variety of nasty things to say to me such as "Craig's list is for the average Joe who would buy a regular sewing machine for $50," "REAL quilters quilt by hand," and "NOBODY would buy a commercial machine like that and then spend more money on materials if they weren't making anything for sale." So basically, I've been accused of being a figment of my own imagination, and so are all of you who are reading this...
- ...And then, in poking around the APQS Forum some more, as well as the We Love APQS Facebook group, I discovered some further upgrades and tweaks that can be done to my current APQS Millennium machine that might make me love it enough to keep it! Starting with the 2019 models, APQS changed the design of the way the interchangeable hopping feet attach to the machine. APQS has a parts kit available for converting machines manufactured prior to 2019 so they can accept the new Quick Change hopping feet. For those of you who don't have an APQS machine and don't know what I'm talking about, here's what the hopping feet look like for my machine the way it's configured currently:
And here's what the new Quick Change hopping feet look like that were introduced in 2019:
- Upgrading my 2013 Millennium to accept the new style feet will involve some pretty involved "surgery", but APQS Tech Support is awesome at helping customers service their own machines. I showed the 37-page PDF of full-color instructions to my engineer husband, he agreed to take it on, and the parts should be here by the end of the week. I'm also planning for Millie to drop a few pounds by removing the bobbin thread cutter as many owners have done, since I don't use it, and I'm looking at an alternative ruler base that may be more secure and stable throughout use. So my APQS machine may, or may not be for sale after all!
- The accomplishment that I'm MOST proud of from the past week? Successfully convincing my son to get a HAIRCUT before his senior portrait sitting that's coming up in a few days!
This Week's To-Do On Tuesday Goals:
- Stay on top of the linky party and continue to spread the word to other machine quilters. I hope to get the linky post written and scheduled to publish farther in advance this week, because I was up until the wee hours of the morning last night/today and I don't want to be down to the wire like that every week.
- Finish the three remaining in-progress blocks for my MMBB quilt before I clear off my cutting table.
- Trim excess batting & backing from Spirit Song
- Digitize, machine embroider & attach a label to the back of Spirit Song
- Make & machine stitch binding to the front of Spirit Song
- Start hand stitching binding to the back of Spirit Song
- Order a new ruler base for my Millie (because my current ruler base will no longer fit, once the thread cutter has been removed)
I would have added one more task to the list -- loading another quilt on my long arm machine -- but the parts kit from APQS should arrive by the end of the week and Mille has to come off the frame for her "elective procedures." I am SO EXCITED to try out the new Quick Change hopping feet that have just one, sensibly sized screw at the side of the foot rather than two ridiculous watchmaking elf sized screws at the back of the foot, which I cannot seem to ever get back in once I've taken them out! Even though I owned a total of four different hopping feet for my Millennium, each designed to facilitate a different type of quilting, I found that it was so difficult for me to replace those tiny screws when I put a new foot on that I just stopped changing the foot at all and left my ruler foot on all the time. That was one of the features that was most seductive to me about the Bernina Q24, the ease of switching out feet on those machines. And, if I do end up selling my APQS machine to buy a Bernina, I'm sure that whoever buys my Millie will enjoy having the latest and greatest hopping foot design as well!
Have a wonderful week, everyone. I'm linking up today's post with the following linky parties:
· Colour and Inspiration Tuesday at Clever Chameleon
· To-Do Tuesday at Home Sewn By Us
· Midweek Makers at Quilt Fabrication
· Wednesday Wait Loss at The Inquiring Quilter
· Needle and Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation
Interesting. It would be nice if your upgrade prevents the upheaval of a new machine. I loved the Bernina when I tried, but could not justify the price. Hope the fix is just what you need.
It's nice to accomplish things that aren't on the list. You've been busy. The sampler is looking good!
Good morning, Rebecca! I'm sorry you didn't find time to work on Spirit Song but I sure do understand. That is so not surprising that people on Craigslist would be ragging on you. It takes all kinds . . . that's all I can say about that. Good to know that we are figments of imagination. Whose imagination though?!! HAHA! I am interested in hearing about your update on your longarm. And now, I'm off you check out your linky party like I said I was going to do last night. Thanks for linking up today. ~smile~ Roseanne
Best of luck getting your long-arm to do what you want! I enjoy seeing the amazing quilting that ling-armers can do, and it must be frustrating when it won't work quite like you would like. Your current blocks on the design wall are looking great - that's going to be an amazing quilt! Congratulations on getting your son to get a haircut, too. I finally convinced my husband to do that, too, after at least 4 months without one!
I need to save your post just to show hubby what my dream craft room would look like!
Silly Craigslist! I hope her elective procedure will make her a longarm you can use more easily! Love the peek into your studio. Those blocks are gorgeous! Thanks for sharing on Wednesday Wait Loss.
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