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September 16, 2016



I have the wonkiest blocks I have ever made. Definitely the hardest project I have ever done. I refuse to give up because I'll be a better quilter when the project is done. P. S. The seam ripper is my best friend. 4 hours invested in block 4.


I'm with you on the Rowenta iron-will never buy another one. (Any one with a suggestion?) Like you, I have a Bernina with a Bernina back-up. The last two times the better machine was in the shop, it was a fried circuit board or a shorted connector. Hang on to your wallet!


I am also doing the Primitive Gathering Christmas sew along. I haven't started yet but I have been analyzing the blocks. You have just confirmed what I have been thinking. I might just take the fabric and make a different red and white quilt like a school house which I have always wanted to make.


I've only printed the blocks so far, now I'm not sure I want to make them! I gave up on Rowenta irons a few years ago, after going through two of them rather quickly. I've had a Black and Decker for the past 4 years that works a charm, with none of the problems I had with my Rowentas. I won't go back!!!

Amy L

I've been saving these block patterns, and have only completed Block 1. Now I know to be careful as I get to #4. Thanks. Are you using the Fit to be Geese mini ruler? I have that one, but haven't used it yet. And my two longarming friends swear by their Reliable irons. They are large irons, and hold quite a bit of water. Excellent steam. When my mediocre Rowenta dies, I'm going to replace it with a Reliable.


I plan to make the blocks but didn't start yet. Good to know that block 4 is complicated I'll make it when I have a lot of time and patience.
Sherri at AQuiltingLife did a post a few days ago about a new iron as did Pam Kitty Morning. Perhaps you buy one of those?

Laura Valdez

I had planned to do that sew along, thanks for the heads up! And don't even get me started on Rowenta irons. Mine was awful!

Mary Kastner

Take a deep breath and STOP! My advice is find another project to work on that is enjoyable and set this one aside for a bit. YOu have convinced me not to do this project. THanks Nicole!



I'm not doing the sew along so that's a relief! As for irons, after my Rowenta went nuts just past the warranty date--don't they always?--I've gone back to 'whatever is on the shelf at Walmart.' Currently, I'm using a B&D with my only requirements being very hot with lots of steam & it works great! And, my back-up iron is a Panasonic I bought for $1. at a garage sale!

Ramona Chester

Are you sure it is not the thread? Generally I have had great success with my Bernina's but I have had some less quality threads. I agree about the irons too. I currently have a Rowenta that was sold to me at a greatly reduced price, but I have had ones that spit and spew too - very frustrating after shelling out that much for them.


It's so frustrating when all I want to do is sew and enjoy my quilty hobby--and yet, I can't due to technical problems. Not only have I wasted a precious day-off, now I'm also frazzled and ticked-off!
Here's hoping your next quilting day is a smooth one!


Mars isn't retrograde but mercury is and maybe causing your issues. When Merc goes retrograde is it the perfect time to finish things already in the works. It will go direct on the 21st so hang in there. Sometimes you just need to take a step away and have an ice cream or something as a distraction. HOpe things are going better soon!

choc chip sally

Do you hear me cackling with laughter over here? Your comment about the sticker had me doubled over! LOL! I so remember the last time when you blogged about it and showed us a photo of his lovely sticker. sillysally


Only Rowenta I've had was the travel iron. Liked it but only lasted me a month so took it back. Had my Black & Decker iron for years when it finally died a couple months ago. I bought a Hamilton Beach which I don't like. Steam is finicky so when that one goes I'll buy another Black & Decker. Love your blog!! You make beautiful quilts. :)


I love your blocks so far, but I've only sewn block 1. I did see how incredibly tiny some of the upcoming block sections are, so I'm not taking this project on my quilting retreat! I enjoy making the small blocks, but they take loads of time to get right, so I completely appreciate your frustrations. I picked a busier background that's floral, so I'm just hoping it looks good.

Diane Linford

A quilter friend of mine and former professional seamstress recommended the Oliso iron to me after several Rowentas died on me. I've never looked back. The Oliso is amazing.


yeah, i saw the sew along but i thought it would just take too much time sewing really slow on those little blocks. i feel your pain. :( i only buy cheap irons from target. i had 1 rowenta that barely lasted a year. i have 2 $30 cheapos and am much happier. 1 is a backup. ;p

ask santa for a new machine so that you have a good 2nd machine. i have 2 plus a 1950s singer featherweight. ;p


Heehee glad to see you're human 😂. I'm always so amazed by what you do so I'm sure it must be the machine or thread that's messing you up. Your blocks sure are pretty though 😍 As for irons, Rowentas seem to spit up all the time. I have a little travel one that is fine, but I use a cheapo shark that works fine for home. Hang in there 😀

Marie Simmonds

No more Rowenta's, nor Aliso's for me. I have had two Sunbeam $25 irons (one for upstairs, one for downstairs) for several years now and they do what I need them to do just fine. Will never purchase another Rowenta or Aliso iron again.

Stephani in N. TX

I am presently assembling a quilt started on a quilt cruise, with very small pieces, and the assembly with bulky joins and many seams is not my favorite. I loved Kim Brackett's quilts among others, because they were fun from cut to assembly. Only one pattern had bulky places that didn't want to join well so no repeats on that one. I agree you always make great quilts Nicole, so sally forth.


Check out Primitive Gathering Christmas blog again. Block # 3 has been revised and Block # 4 a change has been made to the design. There are now two choices for Block # 4.

Maureen Barber

I am stunned at all of the negative comments about Rowenta irons. My last one died after 13 years of use. It was great to the end when the covering of the electrical cord wore through and gave me shocks. I did buy another and hope that it fares as well although it was cheaper than the previous one.


Those blocks are pretty ♥

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