Tuesday, September 03, 2013

I needed a "big" city yellow pages phone book or two

a few days ago.  Or do they still print them?
Like any new piece of equipment, there is a break in period, a learning curve to navigate before you can say, "yea I got it".  Me and my HQ16 are going through such a period and as I finished this latest piece I feel like we are getting on much, much better.  Some things are not imprinted on my brain, yet.  For instance, four out of 10 times as I end a line of stitching I am still reaching for the lever to raise a presser foot that this machine does not have. 
Another  major thing I have mastered about this machine is reinserting the bobbin case by feel.  For a sewer with machines that have always had drop in bobbin,  accomplishing this little task has lowered my frustration level tremendously since I change the bobbin thread ever time I change the top one.
The other thing that was driving me a little crazy was how you thread this machine.  The threading was intuitive except for these three hole above the tension disk area.  I hated to do this step with every thread change. 
A friend suggested that I should tie the new thread to the old thread a few inches before these thread guides and pull it through the three holes.  Eureka!!!  It works ... oh joy, oh joy. 
Even though the table top height of the HQ is the same height as the table that my Janome is in, I felt that I was sitting too low when I used the same chair that I sit on to sew at the Janome.   I  solved this not sitting at the right height to sew at the HQ by using a draftsman's chair but... there is always a but, the extra inches  that put my elbows into the ergonomically correct position made it so that my left leg  was dangling and my right one was stretching to reach the foot pedal.  This made me slide forward in the chair, perching on the edge rather then sitting properly, again,  throwing my elbows into an awkward position.  The solution, I needed to raise the floor if I wanted to leave everything else the same.  And I did. 
Hence my wish for a big city phone book.  Not having one of those or several smaller one I could put my hands on and stack, I gave myself a present.  At least that is what my grandson Josh says it looks like.  In the garage, I located a 4' x 4' piece of 2" thick blue insulation foam left over from one of the 8' panels I cut down to make my design wall that had escaped being put out for the trash collectors.  I broke it into two sectioned along the scored line, stacked one on top the other and  covered it with contact paper to disguise its not to pristine appearance.  I  and added a piece of rug floor grip to the bottom to keep it from sliding away. 
It is wide enough that I can rest my left foot on it as well as the machine foot pedal.  No more dangling legs.

Here is the pieces I just finished.
It has been block and trimmed to the finished size of  24" x 42".   The facing, sleeves and label will come later.

 Now I am off to the quilt store so I can get some blue thread to begin working on the next piece. 

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