I’ve been a tester for Betty Bland for a new longarm tool used to make Baptist Fans. It’s called “Ezy Arc” by “Top Anchor Tools“. I couldn’t talk about it for several weeks due to a non-disclosure agreement and then the holidays were in full swing and then it was cold and nasty, rainy weather and I didn’t have any heat in The Barn. I know I must seem whiney to those who get bombarded with snow, but don’t forget that anything under 60 degrees is cold to us! I know I keep telling you the same thing over and over again but it’s really true. 🙂
Now that Don has the central heat running in The Barn, I’ve been working on my test piece. I finished it up today. I want to share some pictures of the tool and my progress with it.
The tool has a disc with a fastener on the bottom that affixes to the quilt top. This is secured in place with a T-pin. The green template fits down over the fastener and the magnetic cap holds it all together. I love and use DeLoa Jones’s “Little One” and use it when I’m backtracking.
This is what it looks like in action. There is definitely a learning curve because you have to lightly hold the template in place but you have to move the machine & template in tandem…..but this thing is so neat.
It takes some effort to learn how to put the fastener in correctly and I’m still working on that part but I’ve pretty much got that mastered. I think I’ve got it figured out as to how to insert the bottom pin of the fastener to make sure the template is in the right position. I’ll take a picture of that part the next time I work with it.
If you’ll look at the upper left corner of the following picture, you can see how bad my first fan was. Can we all say “Pitiful” at the same time?
I got better as I went but that smallest arc just never looked like I wanted it to. There’s a lot of backtracking with this so I need to sharpen up those skills too.
So…..I decided to eliminate that one and I actually like the way the fan looks without it.
I want to show you something really cool about the Innova machines. I’m using leftover batting on this so when I got to the point of adding more batting, I just lifted up the Gas Assist Bar. That’s the bar that the top is fastened to.
You can see the cut edge of the batting. This bar is great. You can lift it to straighten your batting, add additional batting, and pick stray threads you don’t want to show through the top. I love this!
I just very slightly tucked the new piece under the bottom of the old piece. With this design, I’m not worried at all about batting bunching or getting out of place. After you add batting, do your straightening or whatever, you just gently lower the bar back into position.
You can see the beginning which doesn’t look so great, but you can also see that the arcs do improve with practice.
Here’s the top after it was finished. I really like the way the Baptist Fans compliment the beachy print.
After taking the test piece off Valentina, I loaded a quilt for the Southern Samplers “Wounded Warrior” project. I had volunteered to quilt one for them last year so I’m going to get it finished so I can deliver it to them for mailing to a contact in DC. I’m going to use the “EZ Arc” tool on this quilt also. I’ll use a blue thread and a BUSY
background backing to hide any “oopsies”.
I have no affil. to Top Anchor Tools other than being a tester of the tool for Betty but I think I love it. No, I know I love it. I have always wanted to be able to do the Baptist Fan and now I can. Thanks, Betty!