Quilt tops on Longarm and Tension fixed

Some days in the life of a quilter rock more than others. This one didn’t rock so much! The day I load a quilt onto the Longarm tends to be long. I have to break it up! Throughout the day I swam and got a pedicure – nothing like orange toe nail polish to keep you engaged in your projects. (Yes, orange for U of I, they need all the help they can get. And then some!)

First I ironed the back. Again. Then I found the center point and matched those with the center points on the rollers and pinned both edges. Luckily when I finished, it rolled up smoothly, I did not have to go back and adjust anything. That fabric has a linear row of hearts which made cutting it completely straight super easy and that made it line up.

The next stage, floating the bat was easy. I have to just make sure that the rougher side is up. I was glad I had the extra on the sides, I can use that to practice my stitches.

Final stage, pin the bottom edge of the quilt on the roller and then I float the top edge. It is a lot of pinning! I have my yellow and grey fabrics out to give my eyes a bit of a rest and that way I can have the creative part of the next project going while I am doing the tedious part of the current project. I also have a napkin project going on so I could sit if I needed to and do some simple sewing on that. I do flit about to keep my interest level high.

Then I had to tackle the hard part – the tension. In quilts and in life, there is always tension. In the case of my Gammill Longarm, or as I like to call her, Gladys, you have to balance the top tension and the bottom tension. In life I think you have to have some stress, some tension, it keeps you on your game. Same thing in quilting and mine was off. I made two table runners where the bottom tension was off and the thread just lays there, doesn’t really make the stitches. So I ordered a device to check the bottom bobbin tension and it came BAM in 4 days. I learned how to use it and spent time changing the tension, doing practice stitches, having it still be wrong, swearing and then repeating.

Finally, I got it all right! My tension was in balance. But now in my life, it was off a bit. I had been listening to my iPod all day and I was sick of all the songs. My husband gave me yet another lesson on how to update my iPod and I downloaded Mumford and Sons lastest album and loaded some Adele plus book of Mormon to perk up my playlist.

Phew, the tension in Gladys and in Kathy are both in balance now.

Sew happy!

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    Kathy Mathews

    My passions are quilting and sewing. Add to that French, Spanish, books, swimming, travels, new restaurants, yoga and chocolate and you have me. All of these are best shared with family and friends. Except for chocolate, don't touch my chocolate. You can email me at QuiltingSewingCreating@gmail.com

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