Wednesday, September 30, 2020




What a pretty quilting pattern!  The month is april , windy April shaking the cherry blossom branches.  HOWEVER....the tension is too tight.  I have a cool attachment on Queenie, the greatest quilting machine ever, which tells me the number of the top tension:

The readout is really helpful as it tells me the relative numbers of the tension.  No matter how I set it though, the tension was off.  SO...following Helen Godden's instructions for using gold metallic thread, I took my heart in my hands and adjusted the bottom tension.  Here is the clever part tho which is probably obvious to most everyone else....lets say clever for me.  I took a phone photo of the original setting so I can always find it again.

Am I good or what!
April was the first month I quilted :

Even tho the first thing I do with my quilts is wet them and then put them in the dryer to shrink and crinkle, you can see the tension is too tight.  It looks nice and crinkly but the quilt design pattern is lost.

This is a bit better but I still have not adjusted the bottom tension so there is more drawing up by the quilting than should be

I liked how the snowy ground turned out

The idea behind this sky was to create a puffy snowy cloud appearance

You can see from this one that the fabric looks like a snow fall. which I adjust the bobbin tension

There was not much sky quilting on this block-mostly outlining and foreground.  
Silver thread on the snow for glitter and pretty pinecones

Tension was pretty good on this one

You can see the tension is looser

Going for a bit of a stormy sky here .


Lots of sky here

My cat Alyosha's spring activities
A clam and wavy sky

"blue" birds guarding their nest
And lastly, February...Sunset in the cold and frosty pine forest

So here are the first 6 months and I have completed some of summer and fall seasons also.

It turned out that the thread I had bought for this project-invisafil 100 wt in antique worked really well but showed up too much.  I then bought a huge spool (don't) know what I was thinking-it will last me a life time) of  clear Superior Monopoly 100 wt which is much more difficult to work with than the invisifil.  Then was when the tension problems occurred. As I said these were solved pretty well by loosen the bobbin tension.


Gretchen of


Rebecca of   AKA Cheeky Cognoscenti

for their answers to my request of help on how to do pages in a blog.  I might be able to accomplish this now with their excellent help.

Post linking up with:
Patchwork and Quilt at 
Sew and Tell Monday with Bambi at
Monday Making at
Design Wall Monday at

Keep creating, stay well, stay cheerful


  1. Hello, dear Pam :)
    I so much enjoy going through your beautiful blocks, and OMG the patience you have machine quilting them ! It's gorgeous and amazing, a regal for the eyes... THANKS for the inspiration, my friend...
    I've been hardly hit by a cold bug these last weeks, coughing, sneezing, snuffing, you name it, yet fortunately no fever at all. So it wasn't the flu, neither the Covid19 (thank God). I'm now slowly recovering, but boy, is that bug resistant ! A good sign is that my fingers are itching for some hand piecing -YAY - and yesterday I took back my little baskets with great pleasure.
    October is here already, a new month full of love, hope and faith . Autumn is just so beautiful !

    Sending my heartful and grateful thoughts to you, dear Pam !

  2. I think your quilting looks beautiful! You've done a great job with the invisible thread. Happy stitching!

  3. All your months look marvelous!

  4. I would have been so scared of quilting those blocks with a machine! Great work though - they do look lovely. xx

  5. I really love these blocks. I'm glad you got your tension figured out. I bought a second bobbin case so I don't have to worry about the original tension setting. I haven't needed to use it yet, but plan to put a dot on the main one with a marker when the time comes so I don't mix them up.

  6. Beautiful! I've been thread gathering...hoping to begin my version next year. :)

  7. It seems to be as I slowly look at each photo what an astonishing piece of art each block is. I can only imagine how amazing this quilt will look in all it's entirety. The quilting has added even more beauty and lovely character to it. Machines and the tension!! Sometimes they do fight each other, don't they. I don't think I would even notice those parts where you are unhappy with the tension. I only see astounding beauty. This quilt is one where every embroidered ribbon, every applique....indeed every stitch is filled with love. I cannot wait to see this beautiful quilt when the last stitch has been stitched!

  8. SQUEALING over here with glee!! I love how you're quilting each sky differently to reflect the seasons, the changing weather and moods! I find that MonoPoly likes REALLY loose tension. Here's another tip: pull the thread tail straight backwards from the eye of the needle after threading. If the thread curls up like giftwrap ribbon, the top tension is still too tight. Gentle waves are okay, but not tight curling loops. What were you using in the bobbin? You can pair monofilament in the needle with Bottom Line, Glide, So Fine, a 60 weight cotton thread, etc. With regular thread in the bobbin you don't have to mess with bobbin tension. The monofilament thread actually stretches as it passes through the tension disks if tension is too tight, and it can stretch as it's wound on the bobbin, too, which is where some of those issues are created. If you're winding your own bobbins with monofilament, you should slow down your bobbin winding speed if you can and only fill your bobbin halfway (for a normal size bobbin) or 1/3 full (if it's a Jumbo bobbin) to avoid tension trouble caused by thread stretching as it winds onto the bobbin. Superior also sells prewound bobbins with the MonoPoly, so if they have one that fits your machine, that might be worth trying since a factory prewound monofilament bobbin would have more consistent tension and not be stretched. These tips come from the workshop I took with Karen Kay Buckley last year. I can't wait to see the next 6 months and thank you for linking up with Long Arm Learning!

  9. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful!

  10. what fun seeing them all together. I too have trouble with monopoly threads, so ended up using the for fishing line and garden projects...

  11. These blocks are beautiful! Are they from a pattern?

  12. Love the embroidery on these blocks. Each one more intricate and exquisite than the last. I marked my bobbin holder's original tension with white permanent ink.

  13. Hi Pam, I love your blocks - they are really beautiful. I've never had the nerve to change my bobbin tension but taking a picture of the original setting was brilliant :-) Thanks so much for linking up to the 300th linking party at Free Motion Mavericks and for regularly linking up. Take care.