I feel like there is a tendency in social media to show the most perfect, polished version of ourselves. Only the best moments, and only in the most flattering light. This is certainly true in the quilting world as well, and I’m just as guilty of it as anyone else. I think it can be discouraging sometimes. When you are surrounded by pictures of everyone’s best, it’s easy to forget that not every moment of every day is anyone’s best. No one is perfect 24/7.
In the spirit of realness, let me show you what I’m up to with the Fractions quilt. Let me give you a hint: it involves my least favorite thing of all. If you guessed “seam ripper”, you’d be right.
Ugh. Unacceptable. What happened was this: remember when I said my bobbin winder was acting up? Well, before the bobbins were obviously, egregiously bad, they were sneakily bad. So when I first started quilting, I checked my tension and everything looked good, so on I went! And after about the first row, these eyelashes started to appear underneath. On the top side, where I was watching, everything looked great:
But it was a lie. A dirty, no good lie. Thankfully, I caught it after about half a row. It’s still about 3 million stitches to unpick, but it could have been 12 million if I hadn’t checked when I did.
It’s inevitable that in any given project, I use my seam ripper. Unpicking large areas of quilting is some kind of torture, but sometimes it has to be done. I’ve had to do it for a variety of reasons, but the top two seem to be:
- Tension issues (either because I was rushing and didn’t test it first, or my machine was giving me issues).
- Design issues (either because I was rushing and anxious to get to the quilting so I didn’t practice the design beforehand adequately, or I just ended up not liking the design in that space after I saw it there).
Rushing is a culprit that gets me, you may have noticed. I think I’ve finally started to learn that it never actually saves me any time in the long run. This time at least I can’t blame rushing, since I truly did check my tension before I started on my merry way.
So there you go. I’ll be ripping, ripping, ripping away for a little while so I can go back in and fix. It’s never fun, but always worth it to finish with a quilt you can be totally happy with. It’s not worth doing if it isn’t your best, and there was no way I was going to let such ugly stitches fly.
I hope your quilting is full of perfect stitches and free of seam rippers!