Today, I decided to dip into my stash and work on something other than a quilt. I settled on a cute ruffled skirt pattern from one of my American Patchwork and Quilting magazines that I would make for my youngest daughter. I have never sewed gathers before, but this seemed like a good, simple pattern for learning. I spent my entire morning fighting with my sewing machine, and then fighting with the stitches it made, in an attempt to sew a basting stitch that could be pulled from one end into gathers. After ripping the stitches out three times, I just did a running stitch by hand. I pinned the two pieces at the seams and pulled the gathers on either side of them, pinned them down and sewed. It turned out great, though it took two hours to finally accomplish.
Except for one small problem: