REVIEW: Preparing your quilt for your longarmer

Deemed necessary as recent quilts have not been as ready as I’d prefer.

Pressing your quilt top – do it while your making it!  Your seams will line up better and it will be easier to do a block/row at a time versus trying to press it when its completed or worse not at all.

Backings – pressing isn’t totally necessary.  I’ve found the best method is spritzing as I load it on the rollers.  Pieced backings – please remove salvage edges and press seams open.  While pressing whole cloth backings is optional in my book – size is critical whether pieced or whole.  PLEASE allow an extra 6-8″ around the perimeter.  For example a 50×50 quilt top needs at least 62×62 backing & batting.  I need ample to attach to the machine and side clamps, thus avoiding mishaps with the needle hitting a clamp or pin at the edges.  The side clamps also help stabilize the quilt backing during the quilting process.

Edges – if your quilt has a border your good to go, but if you have a pieced edge?  Well that means lots of seam ends that could possibly come loose from handling.  You can do one of two things – 1) leave an inch tail of thread at the end of a seam or 2) sew a 1/4″ stay stitch around the perimeter of the quilt.

Update on my life – many of you already know, but my husband was diagnosed with Parkinson in December.  He lost his dad to Parkinson so we know what the future could possibly hold.  He is doing well, taking meds and staying active.  He plays racquetball 4-5 times a week with his sons and I do a water workout a few times a week with him that focuses on keeping his movements big and maintaining balance.  Our 10th grandchild arrived on Feb 1st.  She is a beautiful little girl.  Her quilt is unique – no longarm quilting.  I over-designed the size of it, so after some thought, she got a small cradle quilt at birth and the larger crib quilt is waiting on a few more crochet flowers.  I was involved in a car accident in March – that although not injured, knocked me for a loop emotionally.  I’ve had a difficult time getting out of a slump – much like writer’s block- a close friend came and cracked the whip and I’ve been doing much better.  I got my garden started & a few other projects started.  Which leads me to your quilts!  Lots of them! Your notes & phone calls about how much you love the designs I’ve quilted keep me going forward ~ Thank You!

Most recent mishap(July) was with my machine – while thinking too much about the accident and while basting one of my own, I decided to put a stitch through my finger – went in one side of the nail edge and a very small piercing and the other side of the nail bed edge.  No blood on the quilt – it happened really fast.  Made a trip to the ER – tetanus shot, x-rays (missed the bone, no needle pieces or thread fibers), painkillers, antibiotics – I was pretty fuzzy for a few days.  It’s healing but the nerve endings inside get a little irritated when I use the finger to type, press buttons, well pretty much anything that puts pressure on it. (September update – finger has healed very well.)

Now for the show!  Lots of quilts to show off!

 

 

 

 

2 thoughts on “REVIEW: Preparing your quilt for your longarmer

  1. Hi Helen, I tried posting a message on your web site but I am not sure it went through. Sorry to read about your bad news, but happy to learn that your husband is doing well and that you’ve a beautiful, new granddaughter. Also, scary about automobile accidents and your sewing through your fingernail! Ouch, even the thought of that makes me queasy. But you are on the mend and improving.

    We all have our moments of depression. I let myself mope for a day or so, but then I wake up, count my blessing of family and friends, and all that I have that is good in my life. That usually does the trick. My life is far from perfect, but God has been good to me in so many ways. I have had a much easier life than my own mother, but that’s a story for another time.

    You are such a talented artist, one whose quilting has made my quilts sing! I am often asked about you and I always tell folks how lucky we are to have such a talented woman to quilt for us and to be a friend.

    Love from the old Cajun woman livin’ in the Spotsyltucky Woods.

    Dot Clear

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