Tuesday, October 7, 2014

On The Machine Being Quilted

So many of my amazing quilters have short arm or long arm machines and the designs on their quilts makes me drool. I even have quilters who can machine quilt amazing designs and I don't know how they do it.

I never even knew what a long arm quilt was until I began following so many of your wonderful blogs and you took my breath away. Nor did I understand what a pantograph was.  I do now and I am just amazed at all of you.

But for those of you who are like me and right now have no room or money for a larger machine, this is how I quilt using my Singer machine on a re-purposed computer table.

Right now the quilt on it is being stitched in the ditch and is a bit larger than a twin size with a top, middle and bottom is fleece.  While I know fleece is amazing, I just can't for the life of me, NOT put a middle into a quilt.  I don't know why, it is OCD on my part!

So, here is what is on my machine at this time. I used scraps I have been saving for what seems like forever as well as scraps of fabric that others have sent to me and I can tell you I have learned a lot from this quilt.

1. Know how many strips you need and cut them all at the same time. I would cut strips then piece, then cut some more and I never thought it would end.

2. Don't try to match colors, just go with whatever you grab...in this quilt I tried to make it as neutral as possible so it could be used for a male and with a few exceptions I think I did a good job!

3. Get HELP!!! If you can get help cutting, get it. I know Accuquilt has a strip cutting die, but I would love to find one that cuts longer strips or if anyone has any quick cutting instructions I might not know about...please pass them along!
Okanogan Bound
4. Clear off your sewing table. Mine has my lamp, pin cushion, scissors, etc. Every time I quilt something this size, I wind up having to ask the kids to crawl under my desk to retrieve it.

What I have learned is we are probably going to be prepping the area for my shop and with that I have some ideas of how I want my sewing space arranged, but would love to see yours if you are willing to share.

1. I would like a small row of windows between my upper and lower cabinets, so when I am quilting or sewing, I can see outside...long narrow windows. 

2. I would like a sewing table in which when I sew or quilt the quilt will slide down the back side of the table instead of bunching up, so I may need wheels because I don't want years of dust bunnies building up.

3. I need drawers or at least one on my right side to hold scissors, seam rippers, etc. so I can reach into it and get what I need instead of digging under everything to find it. The question here is not will it work, but will I use it? HAHA!!!

4. I need a slide out trash can, so when I am not using it, it is not in the way. you would not believe how many times I have tripped over the trash can I use in my quilting area.  Then, having a Home Depot bucket for a trash can may be just a bit over kill!

One thing I know is that with each trip I take to deliver quilts, I want to bring back pictures and have a picture wall to remind me on my heaviest pain days, why I must keep trying and bugging all of you to help me.

I also want to bring back something for the quilt shop that will remind me of the people.  After 4 trips to the Oso landslide area, I have many wonderful memories of amazing people and when I volunteered to help where I could with their auction,  I fell in love with a clock that I picked up for the shop.  

It will always remind me that life can change in a split second forever and how we need to love everyday the best we can and to reach out to those with a quilt to say we care.

1 comment:

  1. I am setting up my quilting room in my spare bedroom. I searched pinterest for ideas. My favorite was a hosier chest for storage or an old china cabinet painted. I have a long wood table from a school library where I am placing my sewing machine and acuquilt. The wheels idea sounds good but then it would raise my table to high. Guess I will have to get the grand kids to clean under there once in awhile. :) As for longer strips, on the acuquilt, fan fold your fabric on the die. They have a youtube video demonstrating.


From head to heart to hands, I quilt! I May Only Be One Person, But Together We Can Make A Difference. Bless you for stopping by!