Yesterday it was time for serious business with my HQ Avante. I loaded a 110 x 110 piece of backing fabric to my machine and quilted a bag and two toiletry poaches that have been waiting for quilting since Christmas time. When trying to find a suitable thread for quilting the tote bag I ended up choosing an obviously too thin thread (60 weight Bottom Line, in the bobbin as well) for upper thread - it kept breaking and breaking no matter what. I tried to fix it by changing the needle that had a damaged tip - which I hadn't noticed before - but it didn't help either. But changing the quilting pattern from Angela Walters' thread grain to swirls helped, so I finally got the bag part quilted.
When quilting the toiletry pouches I changed thread to a thicker King Tut and played with the circular templates, which was fun - not perfect but fun. And the mistakes will be hidden when the pouches are ready.
As there was still room on the batting and backing I quicky cut a piece of solid turquoise Moda and built a feather exercise. I wanted to try the variegated thread I had bought in Germany, and first made a small exercise in the empy space elsewhere - exercised also how to move the quilt backwards and forwards in between quilting. I then realized that I wouldn't be able to quilt the feather with such thread and bump back method, which I find easier to do than to keep the individual blades separated. Well, more challenge for the exercise, but I'm quite happy with the end result.
After quilting the feather I changed thread - didn't have one that would habe blended well with the fabric - and echo quilted the feather twice. Finally ! filled the background with McTavishing. There is still room for improvement with the backtracking in it, but otherwise it looks quite satisfactory.