Here's a sneak peek at the first border of this gorgeous Christmas in Baltimore quilt by a talented California hand-applique artist.
But first, let me explain, I have a Love/Hate relationship with monofilament (or, invisible) thread. When it works for me, it works beautifully. But, there have been times, when switching to it from my regular trilobal poly thread (love me some Glide thread!), I have been totally unable to balance the tension. To the point where, on several occasions, I have cursed out loud that “I will never use the darn stuff again!”
So, I told this quilt maker that I would use Glide, and match all the threads colors to the fabrics.
But...(I whined) invisible thread is really the best option for any piece that needs lots of stitch in the ditch and applique outlining.
Okay, so I put on my Big Girl Panties, loaded a practice fabric sandwich and started fiddling with the tension knob. Invisible threads (whether nylon or poly) have a certain amount of stretch, and are quite a bit finer than regular thread, and they like to run with the top tension a bit looser. Fine tuning your tension when switching thread types just needs to be done.
OMG, I got the tension absolutely perfect on the very first try! I know there is nothing wrong with the thread or my machine. Tension is absolutely the longarm quilters responsibility. But, I still don't know why it is working now as opposed to before.
Sometimes it feels like dumb luck!