Monday, February 26, 2018


Many times I refer to February quilt camp as 'Looking for Spring' quilt camp. The reason is that we are in the doldrums of winter and usually we are seeing sleet, snow, rain or a combination of all of those. The days are dark and the excitement of the Holidays leave me with a drained, empty feeling. Well, let me tell you, WE FOUND SPRING!!! The last 4 days with the 'Frayed Knots' of One Loose Thread were beautiful!!! The weather was warm enough for shorts and flip flops. The sun was shining and the skies were beautifully blue with occasional white, fluffy clouds. I could not have asked for better weather for this retreat.

I want to thank everyone that participated. We had several new faces (always a good thing) and many more 'old friends' (and I mean that in a good way). We sewed, we laughed, we cried, WE ATE!!! My goodness did we eat!! The Gravatt kitchen out did themselves again!!! I love the fact that the food is excellent and varied. Pat, Ruth, and Belinda really work hard to make our stay very special and have us coming back for more!!! We'll see you in May!!

We are always looking for a few new quilters to add to this bunch. This is NOT a closed retreat and everyone is welcome. You can come and quilt, just sew, knit, scrapbook, crochet, or just sit and read a book.......Camp is a time to 're-center' yourself. We leave problems at the gate and just enjoy the time that we have with each other.

Now, it's back to work for me. I have to get lots done this week because I will soon be off to Charleston to work with the Cobblestone Quilt Guild and the quilt show at Omar Temple. I always look forward to this and it is the only time I can really 'give back' to the guild. I am an out of town member so during show week I try to do as much as I can.

Have a great day!!! I am off to sew on some binding, and load both of my longarms to do some quilting!!

Monday, January 8, 2018



May Mester with One Loose Thread               
May 17- May 20 or 22, 2018

Gravatt Camp and Conference Center
Aiken, S. C.

Open Sewing with Judy Neimeyer designs!!!

Karen Conley- Certified Judy Neimeyer instructor will lead the way!!
   Karen Conley will formally teach Moroccan Courtyard

and Fractured Paint Box. If you have never taken a Judy Neimeyer class, then one of these are just for you. However, you will have the benefits of watching demos on all the different techniques that Karen helps with during the weekend.
Karen will also be available to help with any of the Quiltworx patterns that you might need assistance with. This will be the perfect time to complete those quilts we have started and just need a little help in finishing. Formal class time will be 2 hours on Thursday evening, 6 hours on Friday, 6 hours on Saturday, and 2 hours on Sunday morning.
This will leave evenings for you to either work on your JN projects or any other projects that you would like to work on.
This will be the last Judy Neimeyer focused May Mester for a while. It’s time to move on, so, do take advantage of one of the very best teachers we have ever had during May Mester.

Now for the really special announcement:
        So, you would like to hang around and continue working after your classes are over? Well, I have made arrangements with Gravatt for us to stay until Tuesday afternoon. This is contingent on us having at least 12 ‘Frayed Knots’ register for this “After Party”. I am making this part of the retreat available for a separate fee. This way, if others want to join the fun, they can come in on Sunday afternoon and sew with us until Tuesday afternoon. We may need to move our sewing spaces around a little, but, if that is necessary, everyone can help out and then we can sew from Sunday dinner until after lunch on Tuesday. Moving sleeping quarters will not be necessary.

As you register, please pay special attention to your choices, as there are 3 of them. One is just the May Mester retreat with class. The second is the May Mester retreat and the ‘After Party’. The third is just the ‘After Party’ for those that might just like a couple of days away to sew. If you have any questions, feel free to email me or call me in the studio.
All meals are provided by the fantastic Gravatt kitchen!  No dishes to wash!!!
Walking paths all over the camp so that you can get your daily exercise. Walk by the lake and just lose yourself in your surroundings.
Your fee includes
Any Class fees (Kit or pattern fees are not included)
Neat and clean lodging in either Cole Lodge or Our quaint (newly redecorated) cottages.
The rooms in Cole Lodge sleep 2 and have their own bathrooms.
The newly redecorated cottage rooms have 2 adjoining rooms, each sleeping 2, with a shared bathroom.
All meals during your stay beginning with dinner on the day of your arrival and lunch on the day you depart.
A 6-foot table all to yourself as your work area
Ironing surfaces furnished by One Loose Thread
Raised cutting surfaces
Snack Area
Lots of Laughter
Of course, a few surprises will be thrown into the mix.
Any Questions should be directed to:
One Loose Thread Quilting, 630 Planters Drive, Columbia, S. C. 29209
Attention: Joyce Greer

Sunday, January 7, 2018

It's Sunday with One Loose Thread

This has been a very busy and fulfilling day.

I started my day by finishing up a client's custom quilt. That took about 2 hours. Then I pulled it down for pictures...another hour. After those photos, I spent another hour or so working with them and setting them up as a 'smile box'.

I do a smile box for most of my custom clients. I try to take the quilt from start to finish in a really good slideshow format. Yes, I even include my problems when I create a tuck in the back, but, I also show how I take care of the other issues that might occur with wavy borders or really 'full' blocks. It helps both of us to remember what happened and how the issues were addressed.

Then, I decided that I wanted some outside photos of the quilt....Did I say it is REALLY COLD in South Carolina right now? Well, it is, but outside I went. Took those pictures and came back in to edit them. That took another hour.

Then it was time to trim the quilt...did that. Now I have just spent the last hour removing all of the basting threads from the quilt. Finally, it is ready to place in the bag for pick up.

Invoice posted to client and 'Smile Box' sent to client and posted to the blog.

Started all of this around 9:00 this morning. It is now around 4:00 and it is Bull Bat Time for sure.

So, I have poured a glass of Pinot Grigio and I will now settle back and enjoy the evening. That said, I am going to go cut more half square triangles and work on Bonnie Hunter's mystery, 'On Ringo Lake'. I am very close to being ready to piece the blocks.

May all of your seams be 1/4"...............

Custom Quilting of the 'Girl Next Door' is complete

I finished this quilt today after about 5 weeks on Olivia's frame. It is 100% handguided quilting. Even though the top had an issue or two, I was able to deal with it and I am very happy with the results. I believe that my client will be too.

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow
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Customize your own slideshow

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

New Year New from One Loose Thread!!!

Happy New Year to all of you and thank you very much for your support over this last year. I am looking forward to 2018 and plan to make it a very good year.

For those of you that have been waiting so patiently for your quilts, thank you. Now that the crazy Christmas schedule is over, I can get back to regular scheduled programming for quilting. I hope to have everything that is currently 'in house' completed and back to their owners by the end of February. That is with a few exceptions. I have some heavy custom quilting that is on the schedule that will run later than that time. 

All edge to edge that comes in will still be completed and returned to you within my normal 2 week time frame.

I am currently scheduling custom quilting into June of 2018. Because of this, I will only schedule 2 custom quilts per month, whether they are hand guided, Statler assisted, or a combination of both. Once I get through this backlog of custom quilts, this may change. However, for now, I am going to hold to this scheduling time frame.

Please keep in mind that the 'quilting' part of One Loose Thread is still the major focus of the business. However, I love hosting our retreats and will continue to do so as long as it continues to be 'fun' for us all.

There are, currently, 4 retreats scheduled for 2018 and each is different.

 Spring quilt camp is currently registering and Beth Karr has designed an interesting mystery for us. May Mester 2018 will start registration within the next week or so and this year I am trying something a little different. One building will house our Judy Neimeyer class with CI Karen Conley. She will assist us with many different JN designs that we currently have in process. At the same time, if you have never worked with the Quiltworx patterns, she will be offering 'Moroccan Courtyard and Fractured Paint Box. Either of these will allow you to learn the process and finish with a fabulous quilt. The other will be hosted by Cindy Bundrick as she takes you through the construction of a beautiful bag and wallet that looks as though it is from a high end boutique.You will complete both projects within the weekend and still have time to work on other projects that you might bring with you.

I will, at this time, tell you that this will be our last May Mester that will feature a Judy Neimeyer class with a Certified Instructor, for a while. Karen has been with us for 5 or 6 years now and it's time for us to move on. I am open to suggestions from the 'Frayed Knots' as to which direction we should take with this project.

 Summer camp and Fall camp will both be bring your own project camps with several surprises thrown in.

That's all the news that I have for now other than these little 'tid bits': Mr OLT is doing very well. Loosey is adapting to her new collar and is smart enough to 'get it' on the first beep. Rocky is tolerating Loosey and loves her very much. 

Have a fabulous day and may all of your seams be a quarter inch!!

Friday, December 15, 2017


That's the song I'm singing lately. Stitch in the ditch, or, commonly known as SID to many quilters. Longarm quilters in particular do a lot of SID. Did you know that SID is one of the most difficult patterns/designs to do on a quilt for a longarmer? Why would that be? Well, you have to use a ruler/straight edge, or a curved edge, or some type of guide next to the hopping foot so that you can actually get 'in the ditch'. And on top of that, the piecer has, hopefully, pressed the seam in only one direction
and not flipped it in the middle.

Heaven forbid they have pressed it open!! because then you have no 'ditch' to stitch in!!

If I were to try to 'ditch' this seam, I would only be stitching over the thread that the piecer used to stitch the fabrics together. The least amount of pressure placed on this seam and it will be open and the batting will be falling out.............sort of like this 'fat roll' I have at my waist when my jeans are to tight.....

Now, don't think for a minute that I am really complaining about Stitch in the Ditch...although it is very tedious and consumes tons of really has a very important place in the quilting world. Just one of those important places would be with 'show quilts'.

Yes, if you intend to enter your quilts in a quilt show and have them do well then this business of 'Stitch in the Ditch' becomes very important. The SID really sets up the 'bones' of the quilt. It offers a lot of definition to the piecing and the applique. It can define where you quilt, what type of quilting is going to occur, the density of the quilting, and it can carry the eye of the viewer around the quilt and they will never know it. But, if not done well, SID can really detract from the quilts overall appearance. As quilt judges say: "Stitch in the ditch must stay in the ditch". Many times too, it requires a different type of thread.

A different thread you say? Yep........... You really want SID to disappear from view. So, you either need to match the background and really stay in the ditch or probably use an 'invisible' thread to do all of this ditching with.

Not all of these 'invisible' threads are created equal. However, they are much better than they were 20+ years ago when I first started quilting. Recently I have been using Superior's Monopoly. However, on the last 2 custom quilts I have used YLI's Whisper Touch .004 thread in the top and my usual Superior Bottom line in the bobbin. I absolutely love the Whisper Touch. I can stitch all day with it and never have a thread break!! It's wonderful!! (no they don't pay me to say that) That said, don't be afraid to try different threads to see what works for you. I still like Monopoly. It's a very good product, but, YLI is a South Carolina Company   and I am a South Carolina native, so, I think I'll stick with them for now.

Back to the 'Stitch in the Ditch'..............this takes a LONG, LONG time to do. Working on a quilt and doing SID can actually take as long as the 'other' quilting. So, your longarmer has to charge you for that. I have to charge for that. I may ditch for 10 hours or more on a top before I ever do the first feather or continuous curve, or loop. So, keep that in mind as you take your quilt tops in for custom or custom show quilting. Please don't ask us to quilt these quilts for the bare minimum custom fee. You wouldn't do it, so why would I?

If you have questions about this topic, feel free to ask them. I actually don't know all of the answers, but, I will gladly share what I do know. However for now, I am going to do some 'ditch' quilting. Stay tuned and we'll talk about some other quilt related topics as we go along.

Have a great day!!

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Quilt Retreat with One Loose Thread

Registration for 'Looking for Spring' 2018 is on going. This is a retreat that is open to all quilters from beginners to experienced professionals. Come join us for fun, food, fabric and friends.

Joyce Greer-One Loose Thread