Monday, February 3, 2014

2 Tips That Really Help

 I've always said quilters are good engineers at figuring out ways to make things 'work.' When traveling and woking without all our normal sewing tools, one makes do.  One of the things I carry with me in my travel kit is a metal napkin ring... otherwise known to me as an emergency spool holder. 
A full size spool fits nicely inside... and the thread goes up and through the carrying handle of my  Travel 153 Bernina.... then on into the normal thread feed of the machine.  Why do this?   Sometimes these large spools ( especially when full/new)  like to tangle at the base of the machines spool holder ( this is my only complaint about this older Bernina).  So... I sit the 'napkin ring with spool a distance away from the back of my machine.. and thread as noted. It works quite well. 
Indeed, for quilters, where there's a will... there IS a way!!! 

The next tip is one I'd guess all quilters that regularly use monofilament know.   There are tricks to filling a bobbin ( I almost exclusively use mono in my art quilt bobbins.) 
1) It's pretty simple.. wind it slower than  pedal to the metal. Stretching the mono with a high speed winding stretches it and makes it a bit more apt to break.  Be light on the foot pedal or slow your machine speed for those with no foot control on bobbin winding. 
2) Fill the bobbin only 2/3 to 3/4 full. This thread is around 5 times thinner than an average weight piecing or quilting thread.  You don't need a full bobbin AND a full bobbin is more difficult to get into your bobbin case.   I want to see some daylight between the threaded bobbin and the engaged bobbin winder lever. This one is as full as you would ever want

Happy quilting all.   


Amy Art Quilter & Fyber Cafe said...

Thanks for the tips on using mono-filament in the bobbin. That is one of the "Don't" rules, that can apparently be broken. I always have a little trouble with bobbin thread in my thread painting, it either shows on the top, or on my muslin back, since I change colors so often. I will definitely try this. What brand do you prefer? I use YLI exclusively, after trying a variety.

Patt Blair said...

Hi Amy.... another tip..... if your monofilament or any bobbin thread for that matter is popping thru to the top.... you likely want to try lowering your top tension. On a Bernina dial anyway... my top tension is lowered to around 2 on a 40 wt top thread.... and maybe less on a very fine top thread.
If that doesn't do it.... you might have to make a VERY small tightening adjustment on the bobbin screw. Good Luck! :-)