That little thing called thread

Hard to believe something so simple can have such a huge impact the success of one’s project, yet it’s so true.  Ever had the quilt binding come loose in the washing machine?  I learned the hard way and now use waxed, hand-quilting thread to hand-stitch my bindings.  That is, unless I machine stitch the binding.

I like to use 50wt cotton thread for machine piecing.  Many of my quilt guild members prefer Aurifil thread.  I tried to like it, but Pfaffie pitched a hissy fit whenever I tried to use something other than Superior Threads products.  Now that I have Jewel, (my Janome 6600), I can sew with just about anything.   What a relief!  Superior Threads products are excellent, but are a little difficult to find in my area.  I have to order them online or buy at one of the big consumer sewing shows.  Aurifil is more readily available (yes, it is a little pricey!).

I’ve also found that the same weight thread can vary widely in thickness.  Connecting Threads offers its own brand of thread, which is a good quality “sturdy” thread that my Featherweight absolutely loves.  When precision matching and scant 1/4″ seams aren’t required, I like to use this thread.  I’ve also had satisfactory results using it in the top for machine quilting when paired with a “thinner” bobbin thread.

My favorite combination for piecing is to use Superior Threads’ Masterpiece/So Fine in the top and Bottom Line in the bobbin.  I know they say not to use polyester thread because it’ll rip through the fabric over time, but this stuff is really soft and fine.  If my longarm quilter (who has won numerous awards by the way) uses polyester thread to machine quilt, why can’t I use it myself??????  A large cone of John Flynn’s So Fine costs about the same as a medium size spool of Aurifil.  And it lasts a whole lot longer, too!

In my experience, rayon and silk thread are great for applique work, but I’ve not had any luck at all using them for machine quilting.

Which thread(s) do you like best and why?

Hobby or business?

At what point does your hobby cross the invisible line and become a bonafide business?

This is my dilemma.

The cost to obtain a business license and file the accompanying DBA is more than I made from my sewing pursuits in the preceding twelve months.

If the teaching partnership with the quilt shop moves forward, then I will definitely go ahead and get the business license in my name only.  Any cutesy business name that requires filing the expensive DBA paperwork can come later – if it is really needed.  (FYI – A “doing business as” form is required to be filed in the local superior court if you use a business name other than your own given name (or some derivation including your last name) and are a sole proprietor. It is a civil matter actually filed with the court, advertised in the local legal paper, etc.)

Adding an insurance rider to my homeowner’s policy is less than $15/year provided I keep my gross receipts under $5,000.00 annually. This covers me for private lessons, craft fairs and any sewing I do for hire.  Of course the insurance rider was added.

The business license application includes a line for NAICS/SIC codes.  My business pursuits fall under “handicrafts instruction” and “quilts from purchased materials.”  You can only list one code and the part of your business that generates the largest portion of your revenue determines your classification.  For me, that is “handicrafts instruction” (much like private music lessons).  This works out especially well for a home based business with HOA covenants like mine.

Stay tuned for more fun and games.

The importance of keeping one’s cool

I drive an Acura RDX.  Love, love, love my little blue SUV.  We reached a milestone earlier this week in that I hit the 50,000 mile mark.  This means I am officially now out of warranty.  You can just guess what’s coming, right?

On Thursday, my beloved SUV refused to start after my doctor’s appointment.  Here I am sitting in the parking deck at Kennestone Hospital with a vehicle that wouldn’t start.  I called the local Honda dealer that works on my car.  They said it was the battery and to call AAA if I had the service.  Luckily, I do.  AAA technician arrived about an hour later to meet me and the SUV that was now running.  He checked the battery with his little machine and told me it was time for a new one.  Next stop was the auto parts store for a new battery.

All went well until this morning.  SUV wouldn’t start when I went out to make my customary Sunday run for a copy of the MDJ.  It was as if the battery was completely disconnected.  I popped the hood and guess what?  It was.  The terminal connectors had worked loose.  I mashed down and it started up just fine.  Came home, did my chores and waited for auto parts store location closest to me to open.  (Had to mash down on the connectors again to get it to start.)

Problem?  The battery was literally 2″ too short.  The clerk swapped out and installed my new battery (the correct height) without hassle.  Be forewarned.  If you replace your Acura RDX battery with a 26-3 instead of a 35-1, you will need terminal extenders or a height adapter.  It even says so on the computer screen when they sell you the battery.  (The first clerk neglected to mention this.) Oh well, I now have a 35-1 battery and everything fits just fine.  I had to fork over $3.00 for the different battery (a higher priced battery), plus I opted for the protector goop and felt washers.  Connections are all nice and secure.

All is well.  I’m about to go sit in front of my sewing machine.

Enjoy this beautiful Sunday.

%d bloggers like this: