New leaders and zippers
Last month, I bought fabric for new leaders on my HQ16, and invested in a Quick-Zip system for attaching quilt backings and tops. It’s a clever system: it saves me from having to stand awkwardly at the frame to do all the pinning, and it allows me to remove and re-attach a quilt quickly – particularly handy since I plan to keep the frame loaded with practice fabric when I’m not working on a project.
My leaders were original to the frame, and not very nice. Just a lightweight muslin, with velcro loop along one side (the matching hook side is on the frame bars). Because I had the frame set at 8′ for so long (rather than the 10′ it is now), I had to cut the leaders down to fit. At full length, I had to attach the leftover pieces and pin carefully over the gap. It wasn’t a big deal, but it could be fiddly at times, and the tension wasn’t always what I wanted it to be.
The first step in coverting to the new leaders was to cut the velcro from the old leaders and add it to the new ticking stripe canvas. Simple enough, although it helped to know which leader I was stitching because the leaders are directional as they roll off the frame bars. Of course.
After adding the velcro, it was time to add the zippers. Again, this is directional. As in, only one direction(al)! Luckily, the zippers are all well marked, and I have some skill in following directions. Generally.
All three leaders are finished and attached to the frame poles. I’m back in business!