I finished the Treadle machine quilt.  Finished size 78″ x  84″

I did all of it on the treadle…..piecing, quilting and binding.  Teddy thinks it is for him.

Here are some pictures (click pictures to enlarge)

Back to hand work for now

Happy quilting




Free Motion Treadle video


I made a video of myself free motion quilting on the Free treadle machine.

Before the video here is a bit of what went into getting the treadle to work for free motion quilting.

The machine didn’t fit singer style feet so I couldn’t get a free motion foot for it.     I tried making my own with a paperclip which worked pretty good but kept bending out of shape.

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I tried putting a singer 127 presser bar in the machine but it didn’t fit correctly and was wobbly, it worked but not the best solution.

I bought a spring needle which you use without a foot….. (in this picture the wobbly singer presser bar is still in the machine)


It worked pretty good but I kept getting skipped stitches and loops in the thread if I went too fast.   I decided I needed to modify the presser bar to fit a standard low shank  foot.

Here is a picture of 2 presser bars. The bottom is a singer , too long and too narrow for my machine but with a side attaching set screw that fits many different feet like a walking foot and a darning foot.  The shorter is one that fits my machine, with no quilting feet available.


I bought another presser bar that fits my machine so I can put back the original if I want (you can find anything on eBay) and used a grinder to reshape the end and then drilled a hole for the screw and a tap to add the right sized threads.


It worked and I can now attach a regular short shank darning foot to the machine.


It really is amazing how much better it works when the presser bar fits the machine.

I tried out a tool to help hold the quilt and move it while quilting ( The Gypsy Quilter fabric glide)

It has rubber fingers on the back to grip the quilt.


It works pretty good but I found that I do better with just my hands (hate to wear gloves but might try some quilting gloves at some point)

So that is what went into it the last several days.    This is the block I quilted in the video


and here is the video

Happy Quilting


Free motion treadleing


I really will be posting hand quilting updates soon, but I am in the process of finishing the snowball quilt ( done all on the treadle machine)

I am doing free motion feathered wreaths in the snowball.    Since I am not good at it yet I marked them first.     I found an alternative to a darning foot and it works pretty good.    A spring needle….which was an idea from a reader.  I found it on-line and it is a Schmetz.   You quilt without any foot just the needle with the spring. ( be careful not to sew your finger because there is no foot to protect you )


The spring puts enough pressure on the fabric when it goes down into the quilt so that the needle will catch the bobbin thread on the back and make a stitch.      It also makes it very easy to see where I am going with no foot in the way.

It is a learning process and I am getting better as I go.   Here are a few pictures (click to enlarge)

Teddy says HI


There is a bone in his mouth here but it is hidden on each side by his newly groomed beard.

Happy Quilting


Vintage Machine Obsession


I couldn’t help myself.    I found another machine at a price I couldn’t pass up.  This one is a Japanese made version of the Singer 128 which is the 3/4 scale version of the 127.    I had to change the belt and replace the bobbin winding tire and rebuild the tension disc assembly and oil it and it is running like new.


I finished all the piecing on the snowball quilt (all on the treadle machine) and started to quilt it


I use thread on a large cone with a cone stand like this

cone stand

But it always seems to want to jump out of the thread guide on top of the machine.   The machine was not really designed for the thread to be up above it that much so I put a safety-pin over the spool pin on top of the machine and run the thread through it and it keep the thread in line better.


I put the singer presser bar back in this machine so I could use the walking foot for the straight line quilting.  It is sort of hard to see the quilting in the picture


here it is so far


The backing is  off white with a blue grey design


once the ditch quilting is finished I’ll free motion in the snowballs.

I am still working on the applique top and Teddy is helping.   I can hardly wait to hand quilt it!


Happy Quilting



The Sphinx


The New sewing machine came today.


It is a Singer 127 and  It’s serial number is   AA251096


That makes it’s birth date  January 25, 1925.  You can look up your singer machine based on serial number here

It was in pretty rough shape (so it was inexpensive)  It had been unused for so long that it was frozen.   It took a lot of work oiling it get it running smoothly but it is now running like new!    The decals are in pretty good shape.    The Sphinx pattern is pretty cool.

It will some day go into a treadle (it doesn’t fit in the Free cabinet) once I find a good deal on one.   For the time being I put it into a basic sewing machine cabinet.   It had an old dressmaker machine in it that I wasn’t super fond of (really rough running and clunky).    I added a motor and foot pedal to the Machine and gave it a test run and it is pretty darn good.

Yesterday I wrote about free motion quilting on the free machine.   I sort of solved the issues with it by making my own darning foot.   I used a paperclip to make it.


That might be hard to see….here is a closer picture.  The paperclip I used was one of those plastic coated striped kind)

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I will post more about that after I spend some more time testing it.

I finished all the blocks for the snowball quilt.


Now to sew them all together.

Teddy says Hello


Happy Quilting





Play Time


I have become fixated on getting the Free Treadle machine to cooperate with me for Free Motion Quilting. (not to worry, I am not abandoning hand quilting :)   but it never hurts to try new things)

If you remember the issue was the presser bar…..which doesn’t fit a standard foot. And they don’t make a darning/free motion foot with this attachment.  They attach like this:


Here is how a most “modern” feet attach:


The solution I tried is changing out the presser bar with one from a Singer 127 machine.  It would have been great if it worked…..but there were problems.     The Singer presser bar is smaller in diameter so it made for a wobbly foot.   When the back and forth the needle can hit the foot and break.  I did however spend some time playing with it while the singer presser bar was in it.   I set the stitch length to zero to keep the feed dogs from pulling too much (they can’t be dropped and I don’t have a cover for them) and  used a quilting foot.  I got pretty decent results (the opening in the quilting foot is big enough so the needle wont hit it).

Here are a few pictures of my playing.   (click pictures to enlarge)

I was just sort of doodling so there is no real design to any of it.

I did put the old presser bar back in so I could do some piecing.  I am nearly finished with the snowball top and want to do all of the piecing on the treadle machine.

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I bought an antique singer 127 machine that is due for delivery Monday, after I get it cleaned up and oiled and adjusted I might try to put that in the treadle cabinet, I’ll keep you posted on that.

Teddy says Hi


Happy Quilting