Sunday, June 07, 2015

A Purple Table Runner

It was a long weekend here last weekend and the husband took off for a three day trip with the boys to Melbourne to watch some games of footy *yawn* which equals a whole lot of uninterrupted sewing time! A friends Mum is visiting and it was her 70th birthday shortly after the weekend, so what better pressure to set myself than a deadline of the weekend to sew a table runner as a birthday pressie? So with her favourite colour noted - can you guess what it was? - I set up the ironing board in the kitchen and popped a new needle in the machine and away we went!

It had to be a simple design and I took inspiration from my green/blue/yellow lap quilt and cut up wedges of purple and sewed them into roughly 5 inch squares, then I trimmed them down to 4 inches trying to make sure I had a wedge of the Dennis Schmidt fabric I purchased in San Diego in each block. 18 blocks later I was ready to sew it all together and sandwich it and get quilting.

Here is where the grief commenced. I popped on my new walking foot that arrived back in March, put a new needle in the machine and started sewing, my usual straight up and down quilting style. After about the sixth row, the machine started skipping stitches. At first just one a row, so I slowed down, then the next row it was a few more skipped stitches. Odd I though. So I stopped, rethreaded the machine and continued, still skipping stitches. So I stopped again, cursed, changed the bobbin, rethreaded again, checked the needle was in properly and went off again. Guess what? Still skipping! More cursing, I took open the bobbin case and cleaned out all the dust, replaced the needle. rewound a new bobbin and started again. Still skipping!! I was getting to the stage of chucking my machine against the wall by now. The weekend was drawing to a close, I wanted this finished, so I took off the walking foot and unplugged the naughty machine, put it on the floor by me sewing table and got my other machine out, popped the walking foot on that and continued away. No skipped stitches now but a gradual pulling down of the fabric..... Why is that? It is sewn with a walking foot, it should be even, it is a small runner, I hold it up as I sew, there is very little drag. I know some people suggest you should go up and then down when quilting like this but to be honest I don't like the little zig zag effect it has on the edge of the border. But maybe that zig zag is better than this huge pull?? I'm going to do another runner like this and then experiment, up and down and also sew one on my friends Bernina, maybe it is my machine in general? I ended up gifting the runner to my friends Mum, she didn't notice it. Meanwhile my naughty machine is still sitting on the floor in time out.


Karen said...

I also had trouble with my machine skipping the odd stitch. I have a Janome. After a service and them finding nothing wrong the lady at the shop asked me what brand of needles I was using. At that time I was using Klasse as these were the ones that were easily accessible to me. It turns out not all sewing machine needles are equal (probably a rookie mistake). I have since ditched the Klasse and use Janome or Schmetz and have had no more skipped stitches. The lady said that the Klasse needles are ever so fractionally shorter which results in skipped stitches. Was the lady drumming up sales? Not sure. Either way my problem was fixed. Yay! Good luck!

KateKwiltz said...

Ugh, how frustrating! I had some skipping problems with my Bernina, and changing the presser foot pressure seemed to help, though I can't remember if it was up or down, sorry.

Are you sure it's feeding like it's supposed to, and does it stitch correctly with a non-walking foot? Maybe it's the new foot and not the machine itself?