Sunday, January 20, 2013

Murphy's Law of Quilting

Naturally, once I got my quilting groove back, Murphy's Law figuratively punches me in the face and steals my wallet. Seriously, it's uncanny. IN the last few months, with years having followed patterns and not deviating a whole lot, I've been making a lot of things without patterns...just letting them develop as the ideas come to mind.  It's been a lot of fun sewing without the safety net of a pattern, and it's been one of the few times in my creative life that it's come with just about unilateral success.  I've felt like lately I've been growing as a quilter, becoming more adventurous, more willing to try new things and new ideas, and developing my skills more.  I've always been intimidated somewhat by all the brilliant quilters around me, that I can't hold a match to their skills but it's been a really encouraging experience finding my groove and finding confidence in my work.

But I'm beginning to think somewhere someone installed a camera in my sewing room and waits for every time I am on a real creativity streak and pushes the "ruin her day with something ridiculous because we can't have this kind of fun just happening willy nilly" button.

My machine has bit the dust, and all because of a stupid pin run over while making a shop sample. 

Son of a bee sting.  Everyone runs over pins, every day, all the time.  It's like the one quilting "rule" that everyone knows about and laughs in the face of.  Wellllllllll now, isn't this special.

To the right, is the quilt I was working on when my machine up and croaked, only it was at a lesser state of completion.  I was in the middle of piecing Row flippin' 2. Finished the rest at the shop.

 But back to the machine.  Like I said, I ran over a pin. Broke my needle.  Check out the half-a-pin still in the fabric. It happens to everyone.  But where's the other half?

Well...there's the point of impact but uh...the rest of the pin is MIA and this time, it didn't hit me in the face like it has in the past.  Go figure.  

Would you believe that just before I started this project, I dusted out my machine?  Anyway, I opened my machine up and the other half of the pin is still nowhere to be readily seen. There's my bobbin thread, and some dust, but pin. What the hell, Bernina?

 Oh riiiiiight. It's THERE.  Stuck in the bobbin region, see it to the right?  I took out the bobbin thing, and got the pin out.  Surprisingly, it wasn't in there tight at all, really it pretty much fell out on its own when I went to grab it (gently) with some needlenose pliers...because in that space my fingers might as well be Oscar Meyer weiners. I thought "hey, if it came out this easy, all I have to do is put my bobbin region back together like I have a million times before, clean it out and I'll be back in business!"  Foolish, foolish me.

Foolish me indeed.  Remember Murphy's Law?  Yeah, here's where it punched me in the face.  I reassembled everything as I always have, got it all clean and rethreaded everything and got ready to sew.  When I used the hand wheel (as always) to pull up the bobbin thread...well, Houston, we have a problem.  My needle was getting bent, like so.  I thought, hey man, what gives? So I figured I didn't get the bobbin region put back together correctly. I took it apart, made sure it was in right (it was) and tried again...5 times.  Same thing every time.  So what do I do in these situations?  CALL MY MOMMY!  No seriously, she's good with machines, and knows Berninas. I told her what happened, and she confirmed what I was reallllly hoping wouldn't be true - the timing on my machine was beyond screwed up and I had to take it in to be looked at.

Well, at $135 for the shop to even look at my machine, plus whatever it cost to fix it plus whatever else they found was wrong (which I know there are other issues with it, mainly electronic) plus whatever parts were needed to fix it...Yeah, Murphy's Law stole my wallet too, because Berninas only take Bernina parts and Bernina's prices are just laughably ridiculous. 

Were this machine not a hand me down from Mom, I could never afford to buy a Bernina at all.  But I also can't afford to fix it right now either.  $135 to look at it plus $X to do whatever it needs?  I can buy a good little workhorse machine for that much and I plan to once my paycheck hits, hopefully. It was recommended several times that I look at a Brother machine, because they're relatively inexpensive but are good quality machines. So I'll give one a look and see what I come home with. 

So yeah...My creative burst got stymied by one stupid little pin.  Well played, Murphy you asshole, well played.


  1. i love my little brother! I'm so sorry hon! seems like life is kicking you when you're down!

  2. Fun to talk to you today! Love the Tula quilt:)

  3. Your Bernina is worth fixing!!! Just down the road from you the Bernina dealer will look at the machine for nothing, tell you what it will cost to fix it and have it running like new in no time at all. I know it's not the favorite shop to go into but they do fix Berninas and do a great job of it.


I welcome all comments and constructive criticism! All I ask is that you keep it clean and keep it kind.