Thursday, February 08, 2007

Testing it out

Important policy that was overlooked in the coaster debacle of '07? Test Things Out.

Ask my PIC, and she'll tell you that this is a long-standing policy with me. It's not her style to test things out, and about half the time, she regrets it. But the other half, she gleefully races past me toward the finish line of her project, mocking my snail's pace at every turn.

So what happened to me and the coasters? (Me and The Coasters, autobiography, due out Spring 2008) Well. Every now and then an Act of Hubris comes along and challenges the very essence of the Test Things Out policy. I've made these coasters before! Wasn't that testing out enough? What am I, Testmaster 3000?

Racing ahead without contemplation is never a good idea. Never. (Wanna scroll down to those coasters photos again?)

Oh. I also like to make mistakes just the once. Learn from it, and don't make the same mistake again. It's what I prefer. You may prefer to make the same mistake multiple times. For what reason, I can only guess. But I rock it just the once. (Huh. There's that hubris again.) (Oh yes, and: Rock It Just the Once, album to be released on major label, Summer 2009)

Ok. So, to the issue at hand. I usually hand-quilt my items rather than machine-quilt them, unless the items are small. This makes no sense, I realize. But, for the small items, I usually just zip them through the machine a few times -- some straight lines of sewing -- and I'm done. The machine does the majority of the work.

I'm considering machine-quilting these coasters, and that would be fine. But, I'm also considering free motion quilting. What is that, you ask? Well, this is not just zipping it through the machine with straight lines, with the machine feeding the fabric right through. This is making it so that the machine does none of the pushing of fabric. It's all up to you to move the fabric around willy-nilly to create the design of the sewing/quilting.

But I am NOT going to just start free motion quilting on my precious coasters. What am I? A glutton for punishment?

So! Free Motion Quilting Test: Numbers 1 and 2:

The first was just me squiggling around, trying not to get the thread all tangled. On the second, I was seeing if I could follow a pattern drawn on the fabric.

When I was done, I thought it looked a little like that doggie sniffing a flower.

That's a stretch, but I need this, people. Confidence is shaky over here.

Huh! Isn't that amazing? Hubris comes in and gets you doing things against your better judgement. Then, when things don't go well as a result, your confidence is shot, leaving the door wide open for Hubris to come sweeping right in again with its promises of Confidence and Power! Wow. What do you know? Hubris never pays.

(Promises of Confidence and Power, manifesto, to be self-published, Summer 2007)


kim said...

"Rock it Just the Once" - you know you just started a new catch phrase, don't you? Reminds me of the old Cosby episode where they sang "Jammin' on the One."

Kristy said...

I like this idea of free form quilting. You should read yesterday's post from the Yarn Harlot entitled "An Artist Needs Limits". She makes a good cause of "reality based" artwork. I think the dog sniffing a flower is well within the confines of "reality based" quilting.

As a side note, will we be able to pre-order your upcoming releases on Amazon?

tiennie said...

I find machine quilting difficult - I much prefer to quilt by hand. I think you're going to get the hang of it!

The Calico Cat said...

Hubris, you are mine... Love thedog sniffing the flower - something you could not have planned... BTW planning to free hand machine quilt - you rock!

I am too chicken, I get far to emotionally wrapped up in my piecing to try to ruin it by quilting it myself... & I am in too damn big of a hurry to bother with the time it takes to quilt something - think quiltie....

Jaimie said...

I've done a few pieces with Machine quilting. Not easy, but with a anchored elbow and wrist, it can be done!!!! As well, THANK GOD for seam rippers and fine point scissors. LOL And I'd say that your "doggy" and flower(which would be cute subject wise) is a GREAT start.

Kim is right.. "Rock it Just the Once".. GREAT catch phrase. I am a big fan of "rock on", but now you have me hooked! lol