Observations

Last week I promised I would share with you my thoughts on my first attempt at quilting on my home sewing machine.  I was a bit nervous to try it and spent a lot of time searching the Internet for instructions, tips, and how-to articles.  I was lucky cause I found a lot of great quilting blogs during my search, and it was because of all the other quilters out there that I was finally brave enough to give it a go.  Here are my notes:

  • Needle down – if your machine has a needle down feature use it. If not, be sure to manually put your needle in the down position when you stop sewing. This will allow you to adjust your quilt without messing up your stitches. Machine Quilting
  • Check your machine settings – it took me several hours over two days to finish the quilting on my quilt.  I did a practice sandwich first, and changed the stitch length to one I liked. But, because my machine is electronic, it changes the settings to the default when the power is turned off. I didn’t even think about this until I had already sewn a row or two on the wrong stitch length.  Be sure to check your settings each time you sit down to quilt! I put a sticky note on my machine with the correct settings so I would see it every time.
  • Use larger sized basting pins – I used a mix of 1″ and 1-1/2″ pins when I basted my quilt. It was more difficult for me to remove the smaller pins once I actually began quilting. It might be because I sewed too close to the pin before taking it out, but the larger ones were easier to remove.

    See the difference in the size? The larger ones are easier for me to work with.

    See the difference in the size? The larger ones are easier for me to work with.

  • Take breaks. Seriously! – I know you’re excited to get it done and it’s a beautiful feeling, but trust me. Your neck and shoulders will thank you!
  • Sing while you sew – Yep, I said sing. Turn on your music and sing, hum, and do a little wiggle in your chair. It will help keep you relaxed, you’ll enjoy the process more, and again, your neck and shoulders will thank you. (Can I carry a tune?  Nope!  But I like to sing anyway.  It chases everyone away. 🙂 )
  • Adjust your quilt often – If you find yourself fighting to get the quilt through the presser foot, it will probably help to adjust your quilt. Mine got stuck a few times on the edge of the table and I felt like it wasn’t getting thru the machine. And it wasn’t. A quick adjustment was all it needed.  I’m also planning on trying the quilters gloves that I’ve read about.  I’ll let you know how those work out.

So, that’s what I found so far as I quilted that first quilt. I’m sure I’ll learn new tips nd techniques each time I sew one and hopefully I will become more proficient. If you have any tips/tricks, I’d love for you to share them!

Also, today is #MCM.  Today I have to say I’m crushing on my friends and family.  They have gotten me through some pretty rough times and I don’t know where I’d be without them.  So today, I want to say Thank You to my family, my friends, and also to everyone who is or has served in the military to keep our country safe.  You are appreciated!!!

Have a great Memorial Day!!

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About Beth

I’m a wife, mother of two, and lover of all things crafty. I love to cook up new things in the kitchen and in my craft room, and sometimes get “licking the spoon” mixed up with “licking the fabric”!!

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3 Responses to Observations

  1. jre says:

    hey, do you have a twitter?

  2. Sarah says:

    Great advice! I would add – try to quilt backwards from how you normally would sew. That is, pull the quilt towards you rather than push away. I have a much easier time that way, and you don’t have to blindly worry that you’re going to quilt over your previous lines since you can see them. 😀 Oh, and keep practicing!!!

    • Beth says:

      Thanks Sarah – I’ll try your suggestion. I’ve got another quilt almost basted and ready to go, so I’ll be practicing again soon. I agree, it’s going to take a LOT of practice! 🙂
      Beth

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