Bobbin Woes

Sunday evening, I was feeling so good about my day of quilting that I bragged to Mike about how much better I was doing with my thread tension. For one thing, I learned that I've been putting the bobbin into the case backwards. According to the instruction book, the therad should come off the bobbin in a clockwise direction, and I've been doing it just the opposite. On purpose, of course. Honestly, I don't know if that made any difference at all, but my day of quilting had gone so well that I was sure I was onto something.

Enter Monday. Monday was the most frustrating of all days with my bobbin thread. Things were going along fine for a while. Then, nothing went well. First, I quilted a large section of the block only to discover a mass of eyelashes on the back side. I spent a couple of hours taking that out. Then, when I went back to sewing, the bobbin thread kept breaking. I couldn't go two inches without having the thread break.

Now, here's the thing: I knew why it was happening. I'm using a smoky monofilament in the bobbin. When I wound the bobbin, I was having trouble getting it to wind smoothly, and the inside half of the bobbin is kind of a mess. Then it smoothed out for the outside half. So I'm figuring I've used the portion of the bobbin that wound smoothly, and now I'm paying for my sins on the messy inner portion.

So...what did I decide to do? I finally decided to wind a new bobbin, and problem solved. I got back to quilting, and finished one block...the one block I'd started at the beginning of the day took me through the whole day of sewing until it was time to quit. I had hoped to be farther along than that at the end of the day, but the sewing gods had other ideas for me.

First off, I quilted the pieced strip above the block. I'm just continuing with the same way I did the pieced strip at the top of the quilt.

When that was finished, I quilted the Barbecue block at the bottom of the quilt. And I continued on with the same kinds of designs: texture in the trees, rumples in the landscape, outlining the cars and truck, and for grins, I put some corrugated metal into the roof. It's hard to see in this image.

Here's one a little closer so that you can see it better.

So...not the most productive day of sewing, but I'm one block closer.

All the large blocks are finished now. I just need to do the smaller blocks on the sides of the quilt.

Also, I have a plan for the sashings now, but I'll wait until I've quilted it to tell you about it.

Mike spent his Labor Day getting the ATV's ready to go for our trip. They're cleaned up, chained up, and loaded onto the trailer. You might notice that the camper is missing from the truck in this image, and so obviously, this project isn't finished. We're getting there though.

Today I'm driving down to Salem to pick up my quilts from the fair. I'm curious to know what the judges had to say about them. Also, it's a CSA pick-up day. We're going to give most of this week's share to our pet-sitting neighbors, but I'm still hoping to can one more batch of tomatoes this afternoon.

It's a busy day ahead, and tomorrow will be another one. I'll probably sneak in one more blog post before we go.

13 comments from clever and witty friends:

Vroomans' Quilts said...

Monofil thread is such a pain - it either works or it doesn't. Safe travels today.

Ruth said...

I would think that putting the bobbin in backwards would be a big problem! I do love your quilt and your quilting on it!

Debbie said...

You are brave to use that monofilament thread. Be sure to pick up any stray pieces.....it is so bad on cats stomachs.

gayle said...

Last time I used monofilament, I swore off it completely. (And swore and swore and swore...)
May your tomato adventures go smoother.

Linda said...

HI, wish I had "good advice"; my experience has been ugly with THAT THREAD!
A 'Pat" for Smitty ! msstitcher1214@gmail.com

Dana Gaffney said...

I'm glad you're picking up your quilts today, remember NO lefts, I'm interested in what the judges have to say especially about the sunflower.
You really were telling Mike about how well the tension has been? You know the universe is always listening and ready to laugh at us right?

BillieBee (billiemick) said...

Such a gorgeous quilt!

ES said...

well sometimes tension can be so frustrating!

Cath said...

I am really loving this quilt.

sunny said...

What quilting machine do you have? Mine will NOT work if the bobbin thread is in wrong. Trust me - I've tried! :-)

quiltzyx said...

I agree with Dana - never say out loud how good things are going until the project is completely finished!! Glad you did get it straightened out OK, the quilt is looking grand.

Brown Family said...

I know a lot of people that have put their bobbins in backwards. THat is what I like about my 830 and your Big Bertha! They only go in one way!

Kate said...

I hate tension problems. Sounds like you got a handle on yours.