Saturday, August 25, 2012

More Adventures in Quilting

photo courtesy of HandiQuilter

In my last post I mentioned that I recently bought an HQ Sweet Sixteen quilting machine.  I'm hoping that it will make quilting large quilts (well, really quilts of all sizes) quicker, easier, and more fun.

We've been getting acquainted with each other little by little.

I went to the dealer (Heartfelt Quilting in Lakeland, Florida) on Thursday for a training session.  It was really helpful!

Before the training, I had done a lot of stitching that looked like this.

That's the back side of the fabric with all of those loops and mess.

Those tension discs were the culprit.  You have to really pull the thread in between those discs.

I had been trying to quilt without any top thread tension.

Much better!

My Viking sewing machine has all automatic tension adjustment so I definitely needed some instruction on how to manually adjust the HQ.  And one on one instruction is always so much better than learning from the manual or even a video.

We also went over the screen functions.

I think top speed on this thing is Warp 11.

We also set up the bobbin winder, and discussed bobbin tension.

The bobbins for the machine (on the right side of the picture) are extra large, which is going to be great for quilting large items.  More quilting, less bobbin winding.

I chose any easy project as the first one to try after just doodling around on scraps for awhile.  I topstitched around the edge of these placemats with my sewing machine (that's the blue zig zag stitch that you see at the bottom) then did a simple stipple with the HQ.  The thread I used is light and rather fine, so it's hard to see the quilting in the picture.  But it came out great, and was really quick and easy!   Hooray!

I am hibernating in my home for the next few days.  It seems like a good idea, all things considered:

And if the threat of a hurricane/tropical storm wasn't enough:

The elephants have arrived.

The RNC will be taking place a mere 5 miles or so from my house.  It's kind of a crazy scene around downtown Tampa. Expected this week are sporadic road closures, protests taking place (hope those folks brought their raincoats!), police everywhere, tanks, rocket launchers already in place on top of buildings-- really, it will be like nothing we've seen here before.  And I plan on watching it all from the comfort of my home-- assuming, of course, that Hurricane Isaac doesn't knock out our power!


  1. Lucky duck with the Sweet Sixteen!Your quilting looks awesome! Sad about Isaac, but it looks like every prediction I see goes more and more west which is good news for you. Tanks and rocket launchers, seriously??? Where are you, in a war zone? RIDICULOUS!!!

  2. I'd play on the machine and let Issac and RNC both do their things without me! It's now just a day later and Issac has turned west, so maybe you won't get as much of it. I live in Louisiana and we may get it, but that's the perils of living in beautiful places.
    Enjoy your HQ,