Saturday, April 25, 2015

Texas Braids, Spokane Style!

“If it’s STILL Ugly, you didn’t cut it SMALL enough!”

This has been my buzz phrase for more than 15 years, and it’s STILL my mantra!

I love how it makes folks giggle, while giving their brain a dose of reality.  It’s true!

By the time you cut up that languishing fat quarter, that old and out-dated piece of VIP calico that has been hanging around in the deep stash since 1984 ---it’s not so bad anymore!

Texas Braid from Adventures with Leaders & Enders is the perfect project for making a wonderfully fun scrappy quilt from the dregs of the scraps, and it ALWAYS looks wonderful!

All we were doing is separating our scraps into two color families…..neutrals/colors  or if you want to think of it as light/dark that is okay too!

We filled the conference room at the Spokane center to capacity with 46 quilters, machines, fabric, notions, tools – and happy laughter.

This is such an easy workshop that everyone got long lengths done and had so much to share.


Hubby and wife quilters, Ed & Jean!


Oh the sunny yellow cornerstones!

I was absolutely thrilled to meet one of MY vintage machine idols, Becky of Fiddly Bits!


Becky and her modified “Portable" treadle table!

She even let me sit down and sew a bit!!


Beautiful decals on a Singer 115!


Check out the spring belt!

I took this photo of the belt and the connector because I want to do this myself.

Belts are usually different lengths for each machine, and not interchangeable ---some machines sit taller, some shorter.  This  spring cable belt IS adjustable and will fit many machines easily because of the springy nature of the belt.  Becky brought several machines in with her so she could show me how her portable cabinet worked with many different ones.

Check out here video here:

She also brought in her Wilcox and Gibbs hand crank for me to try:


Sweet chain stitcher!

You might remember Becky as the innovative quilter/farmer who was string piecing with this little hand crank while her GPS driven combine drove down the rows on her wheat farm.  The only thing she needed to do was turn that combine around at the end of the row, head back the other way and the GPS would take the wheel and she could stitch some more until she got to the other side.

You can find Becky’s hand-cranking tractor ride video HERE!


Davis Vertical Feed!

Today I get to watch this machine do its thing ---she can easily trade out the machines in her modified traveling treadle cabinet!  Exciting!  She also brought a National Two Spool ---I needed to take more photos but I ran out of time…more fun to come with Becky today in our Smith Mountain Morning workshop!


Look at them all!  Just braiding away!

Click the image below if you are unable to view the slide show on your mobile device.  You’ll be taken to the photo album for viewing.

Texas Braid, Spokane, WA 2015

Time to get breakfast and get myself ready – it’s my last day in Spokane!  I’m headed home tomorrow morning – Shuttle at 5:30am.  Egad.  Here we go again……only get this..my home route?  Spokane to Minneapolis – 2 hour layover.  Minneapolis to Detroit.  2 hour layover.  Finally getting into Greensboro, North Carolina late late late.

Lots of hexies will be sewn!

Have a great Saturday, everyone!

Click Here to like our Quiltville Friends Page on Facebook for more fun!

Click Here to join our sister group, Quiltville's Open Studio on Facebook, a place to Sew, Share & Grow!!


  1. I would love to know where to get those spring belts. What a novel idea. As I don't know if you can comment on my blog I will give my address.

  2. Bonnie, does Becky of Fiddly (Fiddley?) Bits have a blog? Iff so, can you share the URL with us?

  3. What a wonderful opportunity to meet Becky... I love her YouTube videos! SUch gorgeous machines, and I so enjoyed this inspiration today!

  4. Tell Becky Hi! I just posted your post to the Treadle On group, so others can also see Becky and her machines. I'd love a W&G hand crank. I'm afraid I'd have drooled all over Becky's, if I'd had a chance to see it. Where did Becky get the spring belt? I was talking about one just this week.

  5. I now own my grandmothers (my mothers mother) Vertical Feed Davis. I also have my mothers 201 potted motor Singer. And a 201 hand crank and 201 treadle. I haven't really seen on the VFD those long bobbins have me scared. I wish I had someone who is comfortable with threading and winding long bobbins near by to help me figure it out so I could get the practice to become comfortable using that VFD it has great emotional value to me

  6. A teacher and I with another lady teach an after school quilt club for about 6 4th through 6th kids each year. We're almost finished this year with our scrappy striped squares.We were thinking about braids to use up our boxes of strips. Looking at all these beautiful braids I'm sure it's a good choice. Please thank everyone for sharing and thank you for teaching us that everything can go together if we just give it a chance.
    On another vein I have never really thought about getting a treadle before. Loved the idea of a little(lot)of exercise while sewing but now after watching Becky's video with the picot hemstitcher I've got to find one. I do crochet edging on some things I make. I've always wanted to do a nice lacy crochet edging on a summer quilt that could hang over the sides of a bed about a foot or more. Making all those little picots by hand was too much. Now the dream is looking possible. Please thank Becky for me.

  7. What an inventive and smart woman Becky is!!
    I would also love to know where to get the spring belts, I have an old tredle from my Mom's and Dad's house that I want to try using but it needs a new belt.

  8. I googled and found a blog with a post with info about spring treadle belts,and they are available at McMaster Carr.

  9. Anonymous8:38 PM EDT

    But which type of belt spring at McMaster Carr??? Many to choose from..

  10. That's a lot of Texas Braiding going on. So pretty. I've never done one. I guess I'm gonna have to find a tutorial and try. I like the look just don't know how.
    And wow those are long lay overs.
    thanks for sharing


Did you know that ad space on this blog provides for all of the free patterns and free mysteries and challenges at no cost to you?

Thank you for understanding the many hours that go into this blog every day, 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year. :)

Each ad you click X to close is a thank you in return.