Ask Jo…my mail box and housekeeping.

First off…let me apologize to anyone who has sent mail to my gmail account.  I access that via the computer but for two months, there is rarely email in the box.  I discovered why today.  Apparently about two month ago I was on my Kindle and looked to see about email options there.  Little did I know that for the last two months, all of my gmail has been going there instead of to my computer account.  UGH..and how embarrassing for people to think I just haven’t been responding.

I got a beautiful note along with a check from Cindy.  The check is a donation to help out with charity quilts.


THANKS so much Cindy.  I really appreciate it and just in time…I was just about to order a roll of batting for charity quilts.

After this post of my Celtic Solstice Mystery, I had several people comment that my chevrons are wrong….sadly, they are right.  I’ve read on line that several other have done the same thing.  At this point I am not going to rip them out.  They could be part of a border and in that case they are all going to be sewn together anyway and all I’d have to do is rip one half off after then have all been sewn together.  If they are part of the block design, I might rip them out and I might leave them…Thanks for letting me know.  It gave me to time to make a plan of attack with panic-ing first.


After this post showing the clam shell tool I was using Sue K asked, “Do you like your clam shell template? What brand is it? I’m slowly accumulating those kinds of toys . . ”


This is a HQ Versa Tool.  It’s my first tool and I’m new to tools so I don’t know if my opinion is a good one.  I watched a few videos including this one about the tool when trying to decide what tool to invest in.  I do like that the tool is hand sized.  I do like that there are more than one options in how to use it.  I have seen others that are used for clam shell designs that link many arches together.  I would by far prefer this and it’s cheaper too.

After this post about the new mat for along my quilting machine, I got a wonderful comment from Ann Storlie, “we cut pvc pipe to raise the table I use to cut on. It slips onto the legs and stops where the cross pieces are – 4 inches made a world of difference on my back when cutting. I saw this at All in Stiches in Zumbrota, MN. For cutting at the quilting retreats at Good Earth Village, Spring Valley, they use 4×4 or 6×6 wood blocks that a hole was drilled one inch down, the table leg then sits in the hole and stays put.”

and this comment from Romonia, “I had my hubby install a hand crank hydraulic lift on my machine several years ago. It works great. sometimes just a slight change in height will make a huge difference in how long I can quilt and be comfortable. I can’t remember how much it cost to do this but it was reasonable and way less than the electric hydraulic lift system.”

Okay…that gives my husband THREE different options on how to raise my machine.  I am going to try to convince him to choose one of these options and get the table higher. (have I mentioned how thankful I am that he is handy?)

Thanks so much for all the suggestions.  I have people write and say they learned something from the blog….I am glad.  But I am also so very thankful that many of you take the time to comment and share your trick and secrets too.  I learn lots from you too.


7 thoughts on “Ask Jo…my mail box and housekeeping.”

  1. If you are trying to raise the height of your APQS machine please note that your legs of the table have a “foot” similar to your refrigerator or washing machine/dryer only the screw part of it lets you raise the machine nearly 9 inches. Remember…your APQS table is built very sturdy, therefore, is heavier than most longarm tables/frames.

    If you are raising your cutting table I have found that simply purchasing the plastic bed risers from Walmart is inexpensive and they stack together and take up very little space when not in use. I have several tables with these under them at the studio. They are located in the store by the clothing hangers, and other closet accessories. Usually available in a couple different heights. A great gift idea for any quilter who does not have a commercial or formal cutting table.

  2. Jo, I machine quilt on an HQ 16 and I sit on a backless stool with five wheels (from and it has a tractor seat on it). I love sitting to quilt because I can see better what I am quilting from the lower angle. Plus it is way easier for me than standing (I am 61). Maybe some would develop shoulder issues, but I have not, and I do more and more quilting all the time and love it!

  3. Jo, I did the same thing with my chevrons that you did – sewed them backward. I emailed Bonnie because, like you, I didn’t want to unsew all those pieces if they were going to work in a border. Bonnie replied that I had to redo them because they are part of the block. It didn’t take long and kind of became addicting. It’s good tv watching work.

  4. The church where we sew has sets of the PVC pipe that we use for the cutting ntables when we have a quilt ay. They slip over the legs of a standard folding table, and have rubber caps on the end to keep them from marring the floor. Not sure if they would be sturdy enough for a quilting frame though. Our guild bought a set of 7″ heavy plastic risers for our sewing days. They stack inside each other to store & make a huge difference for someone like me, who is 5’9″. I also have double risers, for a total of 9″, on my personal cutting table. Can you guess where I do all of my Christmas present wrapping? Both the guild’s set and my set were purchased on Amazon.

  5. I am getting ready to start sewing my chevrons. I am glad you mentioned this so I can be extra careful about making sure I am sewing them correctly. As you can tell, I am very far behind. I have two weeks off from work, so I plan to be caught up soon.

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