So I wrote this on a big piece of paper and put it on my bulletin board...
How I will tackle challenges:
1. Make a plan.
2. Work up my courage by practicing, and by saying kind and encouraging things to myself.
3. Be brave and just start.
This week's challenge was to tackle a (new to me) free motion baptist fans designs on a large quilt. If you've ever tried to do this on a domestic sewing machine, you know it is not an easy thing to accomplish.
I worked out a plan of how best to handle the bulk of the quilt and how to get the fans going in the same direction. For the first time ever, I did not start with a stabilizing grid of "stitch in the ditch". I just started on one side and plan to quilt to the other side...yikes!
The plan is that when I get to the middle, I will turn the quilt around and try to quilt the fan design the opposite way...in other words, I will be quilting the same design upside down for the second half of the quilt. I have been practicing drawing the design on paper starting from both directions and I think I can do it.
So I followed my 3 steps to tackling challenges...so far, so good! I found that I like the look of 6 arc fans, but I can only quilt 4 arcs without going all wonky and losing the smoothness of the arcs.
I haven't had any skipped stitches or thread breakage at all...yippee! I am using my favorite Aurifil thread with beige in the bobbin and a light aqua, and a #100 topstitch needle (you can see the difference in the size of the eye of the topstitch needle on this Schmetz site).
I guess I need to add step #4: Have faith that it will go well and if it doesn't, have hope that I can figure out another plan!
Wait until you see what my next challenge is! Here's a clue...it is something I've wanted to do since I was a kid, but my family couldn't afford it. Now I can afford it, but am scared to do it!