I have finally finished the Strawberry Shortcake quilts for my nieces. The first quilt (on the left) went really quick. With the exception of the backing folding back on one corner, I had no problem and enjoyed working on it. The second quilt (on the right) was a nightmare...really it was the worst quilting experience I have ever had! Even as a beginnner, I never had this much trouble with machine quilting. I could not quilt a 7" block without the thread breaking 2 or 3 times. At first I thought maybe it was the new varigated Coats thread I had bought...so I changed the thread. I tried Sulky, Gutermann, Mettler, two types of YLI, and Aurofil. But each of these threads kept breaking. And of course I tried changing the needle. I tried a universal, a microtex sharp, a metallica, a stretch and finally settled on a quilting needle because it felt like it was going through the quilt easier, but the thread was still breaking. Even quilting at a snail's pace didn't keep the thread from breaking. After spending more than a week trying to quilt this thing, I believe the problem was the batting. For the first time I used a "Warm and White" batting, because my regular choice of "Warm and Natural" wasn't available. This was the only thing that was different between the first and second quilts.
I created a new quilting design (photo on the left) since I get bored quilting the same pattern over and over, and it would have been a fun design to work with, if not for the thread shredding problem. On the right is the backing fabric for the second quilt.
I cannot tell you how happy I was to finish the bindings and finally hand the box of quilts over to the post office ! Now...on to more fun and creative projects!