Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Pedal power

I dusted off the treadle machine the other week and started quilting. Well...I mean, it wasn't quite as simple as that. I tacked all the layers together (with much 'assistance' from the dog), and started quilting on my old Jones electric machine. After about half an hour of solid sloooow free-motion stitching, the controller foot got really hot...and I found it had melted the carpet underneath!!! eep. So...rather than risk a trouser leg fire I thought I'd try to find some way round it. I thought about electronic foot controls and stuff but it turns out that they cost more than I spent on my machine. So I'm not sure it's going to be worth replacing the pedal. But...after a lot of thinking...I realised the answer was in front of me. (well, to the side actually)

ooh, nice radiator...
My Singer 15k Treadle! Sure, it's not as pretty as some treadles out there but it works just fine. The pretty bits on this model all seem to be located where you can't see them:
Engraved face plate

And then there's this bit which sits at the back covering the oiling thingummybob:

I've removed it and sat it ontop of the machine to show you. I think it looks like part of a shawl pin or something! It's very elaborate for just sitting on the back of a thingummybob, that's for sure.

Anyway, after a few backwards treadles and a bit of a practice on some spare fabric, it all seemed to go okay.
that nice radiator again!

I've chosen to quilt around the pattern of the fabric or be inspired by the shapes - it's much easier than trying to draw a pattern and follow it. I've always enjoyed free-motion stuff but doing it on the treadle has made me obsessed. I try to do a bit each morning when I get up, and before I walk Trixie! Mind you, I don't recommend treadling when tired. I have made a few sleepy mistakes...

If you accidentally pedal backwards, this is what happens. A big ugly loopy mess on the back. It's easy enough to pick out and get started again though. Well, as long as I remember not to treadle backwards again...I wonder if I could do all my sewing on the treadle...? Maybe when I am a bit more practised at it. Only 3,00000000000000000000000.142857 approx square feet of quilting to go - I think I'll be ace at it by then...

After last month's post about my rubbish craft organisation skills, I thought I'd follow up with a pic of my rather different yarn organising capabilities. I don't have much mess when it comes to my actual work/business room, just in case you worried that your Yaffle Yarn would reach you with Trixie paw prints or bits of random fabric in it.

I impressed myself with how tidy I keep my work yarn! :-) One day I'll have one of those nice box-style shelves with lots of 12x12 cubby-hole type things (I'm struggling for words today...! Quilt brain!) but this will do for now...


  1. Love!
    Pedal-to-the-metal, as the saying goes ;)
    Your free quilting is droolworthy. Or maybe not - that would make the quilty goodness all soggy.
    Hugs, Rx

  2. Your quilting is so beautiful. I love the way you combine colours.

    All my knitting has cat hair in, so Trixie prints wouldn't make much difference. (There's a new line for you: Trixie Prints!)

  3. Your quilt is absolutely gorgeous, as is the Singer machine!

  4. Pretty quilting and pretty machine too. I keep thinking thay I might like a treddle too but my house is full of fibre and spinning wheels, DH would have to live in the garage!

  5. I've always admired those Singer treadle machines (even though I can't sew). Love your blog..totally love your dog. Is he a very (cute)hairy JRT? I have a smooth Jack Russell 100% trouble..lol

  6. That sewing machine is gorgeous and takes me right back to my gran who used to have a treadle machine as well, probably a singer too!
    Wow, I wonder whatever happened to that machine. Thanks for the trip down memory lane!
    I love the quilting you have done, beautiful colours and I am very envious because I am a complete novice with the machine and can only dream of the day I can do something like that!

  7. Hi from a new follower, I came across you through Polly Polkerdots blog, I've had a great read, I also gaze at the birds through the window so I think I'll fit right in.

    Jan x

  8. Hi
    I'm also a new follower, and instead of being busy in my workroom I've been reading back through you blog, and laughing sooo much. I love it, love the yarn ,love the sence of humour, thanks for cheering me up on a gloomy monday morning. and lots of knitting inspiration


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