I arranged my free machine patches in two samplers. The first one collects my trials at free straight stitch, zigzag stitch and whip stitch both in straight and zigzag stitch. This sampler of 10 lines includes 90 square patches each measuring 3 cm.
As suggested by this Chapter instructions, I used white calico doubled with tear-away stabilizer. Needle size was 110. No hoop was needed.
SAMPLER ONE – FREE STRAIGHT STITCH, ZIGZAG STITCH, WHIP STITCH
Lines 1 to 3 – free straight stitch - normal tension on top and bottom
Lines 4 to 6 – free zigzag stitch – normal tension on top and bottom
Lines 7 and 8 – whip stitch (straight stitch) – loose bottom tension, normal or tighter tension in the top
Lines 9 and 10 – whip stitch (zigzag stitch – from narrow to widest) – loose bottom tension, normal or tighter tension in the top
Sampler two is worked on two layers of calico. Patches are a bit larger (4 cm each) and are arranged on 3 lines. In some instances I used a very loose tension in the bobbin (I keep a separate bobbin case for these experiments), in others I bypassed the bottom tension altogether. It’s been a try and fail process, depending on type of thread and tension.
I lost the tiny tension screw a few times when stitching and crawled for minutes on the floor on my fours armed with a pin magnet to get it back – a very unnerving experience!!! With some yarns bypassing tension is the best option while with others nothing seems to work and I just had to give up using them in the machine.
SAMPLER TWO – CABLE STITCH (straight and zigzag stitch)