Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Quilting Tip

My goal was to have the Christmas Cactus top completely quilted in time for Stitch N' Bitch, which took place this last Saturday, the 8th.

Yeah, that just didn't happen.  I got slammed with the killer cold from hell that had my tonsils so swollen that I actually dreamed that someone was shoving orange and purple fabric down my throat and woke up choking!  Yeah, I was in Urgent Care that very morning, praying I didn't have strep throat.  Then I called in and slept as much as I could.

Anyway, I'd gotten about 50% (and 500 yards of thread) into quilting the top before I got taken down for a week with said killer cold from hell.

Now, I've not done a lot of quilting big tops on my piecing machine.  Why should I, when I have this:

 'Nuff said, right?

Well, not so much for the Christmas Cactus top.  The big frame is awesome for anything that isn't a straight line.  Since that's all I'm doing to this particular top, I'm shoving the giant thing through Bessie's woefully inadequate throat space.

It's not a big deal, really, except that the quilt sandwich kept unrolling itself as I quilted.  I bought bicycle clips at Joann's - those are the metal semi-circles coated in (supposedly) non-slip plastic.  Well, those stupid things just kept falling off.  I pondered taking a big needle and basting the rolled quilt together, but I could damage it.

The solution?

Available at your local office supply store.


Seriously!  I went to OfficeMax and bought a package of 12 - 1" binder clips for $5.97.  At home, I rolled the quilt up and went to town:
Yes, Demon just had to settle herself and begin cleaning herself in the five minutes it took me to roll the quilt and apply the binder clips.

They work great!  Quilt layers compress down to nearly nothing, so the 1" clips are perfect!  It seems like they'll be a little tough to get onto a quilt that  has more bulk to it, but careful folding should circumvent that problem.

Now, my quilt fit in the throat with no fighting and the clipped rolls make for awesome handles!


Anita said...

Good idea, I'll have to remember this one.

K said...

That's a good idea.. I should try to pick some up and see how it works for me. (I'm currently trying to quilt a baby quilt on my little machine and am being driven slightly nuts by the thing constantly unrolling. It's not even that big!)

Sarah Craig said...

Smart girl! And I'm happy to see your regular quilting set-up - it looks just like the one I got for Christmas! So - do you have any words of wisdom for me? I haven't had a chance to use it yet - still need to set it up with a practice quilt.....

Sherron said...

What a brilliant idea! I just bought some binder clips to keep my headphone cord from tangling in my gym bag. Hurray! Now I know what to do with the rest of the box! I quilted a small baby quilt last week and I was going crazy with the quilt coming unrolled. I use to have the clips but couldn't find them (it has been a long time since I have machine quilted!)
I have two quilt tops waiting to be quilted and I am beyond delighted to have a solution. Thank you so much!
I found you through r0ssie's process pledge.

Micki said...

That's a wonderful idea. Thanks for sharing!

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