Tag Archives: penny sampler

Life’s Little Disasters

Yesterday, after writing about the Penny Sampler, I couldn’t help it – I had to start the Penny Sampler.  I felt I deserved a reward – I had pieced together the back of Danielle’s quilt, made my quilt sandwich, basted, and was ready to quilt today.  I was on a schedule, I was keeping to it, and darn it – I deserved to dive into the Penny Sampler, even though I already have the City Sampler to keep me busy, even though I’m not totally sure of the color scheme, even though I had never tried the first technique, applique . . . screw the even thoughs, just do it, I thought.

So, without the suggested practice, I tried my hand at sew and turn applique and jumped right into the first block.  I had just watched this class on Craftsy, Big Techniques from Small Scraps with Sara Felke.  I bought the class during a flash sale, when it was only $9.99.  Right now, its $39.99 – even after taking this class, I don’t think I’d pay full price for it – not that it’s not good, and rich in detail – but I’m just not that interested in needle turn applique.  The idea is that if you do needle turn applique – where you turn the fabric edges under with your needle, you’ve got the perfect portable sewing project.  Eh.  I don’t need to carry my sewing with me everywhere – except maybe to the t.v.  And, I just don’t love applique all that much.

I do love it in the Penny Sampler though – and Rachel teaches two methods of machine applique – sew and turn, where you sew your fabric to a piece of muslin, and then turn it right side out, and a freezer paper applique, where with some starch, you fold and iron your edges around a template.  And then, whichever method you use, you machine stitch it onto your background with a messy modern sketch stitch.  Much more my style, and one of the things that drew me to this sampler.  So, I drew my heart onto the muslin – pinned it to my print fabric – a vintage feed sack charm square – can’t go wrong with vintage! – and took it to the machine.

Oh yeah – another even though – even though I had never sewed curves.  Eh, can’t be too hard, right?  And, it wasn’t – I just sewed slow, turned the best I could, lifted my presser foot when necessary – and I had a heart.  Not a perfect heart – but who does have a perfect heart?  It’s the imperfections that make us human – and in the quilt it goes:

heartblockYou can see that it’s not perfectly round at the top, and the sketch stitch should be closer to the edge – but again, it’s the imperfection that makes it true.

Although, perfect would be nice too – and there’s still plenty of opportunity to get closer to perfect in this section of the Penny Sampler course.  And, with that in mind – I started the next block – a quartet of hearts.  Since, you use three hearts with one fabric, and another lone heart from another, I didn’t go with the feed sack charms (only 5″ there), but with some leftover Fandango I had in my stash.  The first one was eh, the second one closer to good, and I had enough Fandango, that I was probably going to not use the first – but . . . then it happened.

Life’s Little Disaster.

I got up to take one of the hearts to the iron, and I tripped on the foot pedal.  I yanked the pedal out of the jack, and busted the jack.

I keep telling myself that this isn’t really a disaster.  The Phillipines is a disaster.  This is more along the lines of a small setback, disappointment, gee that stinks moment.  But, when I heard that crack, and I tried to plug the pedal back in, and there was no hum of the machine when I put my foot down, it felt like . . . well, since I’m working on hearts, I’ll use that sappy analogy – it felt like heart break.

But, today is another day, and my “hearts” are actually fine – it’s just the machine that’s broken.  And, it can be fixed.  And, if I can’t be fixed at a reasonable price, a new one can be bought.

And, in the meantime, I’ve started my Penny Sampler!