This piece - working title Olives of Many Nations - is for the chop. The stitching problems have revealed that the olives would be better added as pre-stuffed blobs, invisibly appliqued, on top of the flag shapes, rather than with fusible web and raw-edge applique, which can lead to a certain clumsy look...
At least it's led to some better ideas! But the machine... I have changed the needle, checked that the needle is inserted properly, cleaned the bobbin area, checked the bobbin [there is a squeak...] - all that remains, according to the checklist in its manual, is that the fabric and thread may be unsuitable.
Could the problem lie in the foot - my new freemotion foot? I got out my trusty "trial sandwich" and first tried stitching back and forth with the normal foot - that works fine. So I tried it out on the olives, and discovered that it's possible to do raw edge applique with the feed dogs up and a normal sewing foot.
Using the tiny-hole foot on the Olives piece was a success - in terms of very few stitches being skipped. One of the fabrics, a thin silk backed with iron-on interfacing, definitely does cause problems. Another thing learnt (beware of iron-on interfacing)! The thread is still frazzling a bit - probably this happens (why, though) when stitches are skipped.
I will finish the piece before binning it, because "taking it to the end" is about the process and the experience gained, not necessarily about having something you'd actually show the world.
|"I've started, so I'll finish" - the olives look like islands, or are they swimming upstream?|