Saturday, August 7, 2010

Mastering Machine Quilting...yeah, right!

2010 is the year that I mastered Machine Quilting! Baaahaaaaahaaaaaaa!!!!
(Sorry, just a LITTLE overcome with laughter, there!)

OK.  2010 is the year I begin to barely learn how to machine quilt! In April, I purchased a "Hobby Quilter" from Nolting to use on my Bernina quilt frame.  So far, I absolutely love it!  There's no stitch regulator, so there's a bit of a learning curve as I pace my movements to make my stitches even.  It's a control issue.  Lord knows, I love to be in control.  I'm not there yet, but I'm determined! :-)

I've used up about a bolt of muslin for tops and backings to practice on, and finally took the plunge on a few "real" quilts.  Two of those were pre-printed panels, graciously provided by my local Project Linus coordinator (thanks, Pat!!).  I was surprised at how well they turned out!  I even did some feathers -- fairly even and, from a distance :-D, they look great! (Wish I had pics of 'em.)  I very proudly turned the quilted panels back over to Project Linus to grace some sweet child's arms.

THEN... I started on a quilt for my pastor's brat. :-D Just kidding. My wonderful pastor and his lovely wife are new parents, so it's WAY too early to call the kid a brat. My being a deacon's kid, I'm just assuming.... :-D

Baby Barton Quilt -- machine quilted on my Hobby Quilter
Wouldn't you know, those same feathers that were so lovely on panels did NOT turn out so lovely on the quilt that would be held up at the Baby Shower for the whole town to see! 

Baby Quilt detail (sans holes!) :-)
I became expertly acquainted with an "unquilter" (translation: seam ripper) and the accompanying results when you're in a hurry -- little holes that have to be repaired.  Very sad.

The good news is that this is a BABY quilt.  A few (cough, cough) discreet little patches won't matter after it's been dirtied, well-loved, and washed a million times. (I know, I know... Whatever helps me sleep at night! Sigh.)

If I'd had more time, I'd have taken the quilt over to some of the girls in my guild and said, "How do I make this better?"  "What am I doing wrong?" or "Is there a better way to, um, 'un-quilt?'"  It's important to get feedback so that the next time turns out better.

It's the same in our walk with God!
Galatians 6:1 (Amplified Version) says, "If any person is overtaken in misconduct or sin of any sort, you who are spiritual [who are responsive to and controlled by the Spirit] should set him right and restore and reinstate him, without any sense of superiority and with all gentleness, keeping an attentive eye on yourself, lest you should be tempted also." 

Sadly, we are often too busy judging to take the time to "restore" or "reinstate" -- and the "without superiority" thing....? No, not happening.   We say, "Oh, what a lovely quilt!" then privately whisper its imperfections to others.

Isn't that also what we do to people!?

Ephesians 4:29 says, "Do not let unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen."

I want to be more of the "restoring" and "building up" variety rather than the whispering/tearing down variety of quilter and Christian.  Most people (myself included) -- and, hopefully!, my machine quilting -- are going to get better with time and practice.  Some gentle correction and edifying talk will only speed the process along!

Mary Lou

P.S.  Click on the photos of the baby quilt to magnify them and take a look at my free motion quilting.  I'd love to hear how I can make it better!

1 comment:

Patty Sumner said...

I am not here to give you advice on how to make the quilt better, Lord know, I could not even begin to tell you how. I am merely a collector of quilts not a "quilter". Looks great to me! By the way, it is kinda hard to hear you say, "my pastor's family". Life must go on. Continue to do your thing and all will be well.