Monday, July 5, 2010

An entry for the Longarm Conference

A customer was kind enough to loan me her quilt to take to the Longarm Conference in Cambridge for the display.

I really went to town on this and tried all those new techniques and designs I'd been learning about and seeing for a while. This quilt is perfectly pieced by it's owner and had lots of empty space to play in.

I told you June was busy!

I could only upload half my photos on the last blog post, so here's some more.

My quilting studio has just been doubled in size with the removal of a silly wall that someone put up to make 2 bedrooms. My studio is now so cool I am sometimes jealous of myself! It is also cool in the fact it's the coldest part of the house - a cool 5degC this morning in fact. Brrrr! One good thing is there is no sun fading on the quilts - always have to look for the positives.

June Quilts

June was a very busy quilting month and I have a few photos of some of the many quilts I worked on. I was able to try out gold metallic thread which worked a treat, I attempted and conquered my first bargello and perfected McTavishing!

This month I am quilting a wholecloth for the first time with my own design - butterflies on black.

The NZ Longarm conference is on in Cambridge June 24-27th which will be another inspiring event and opportunity to meet with other longarmers in NZ. There is always a few overseas tutors at these conferences who have had years of experience. Can't wait to pick their brains - and steal their ideas!! No, they're all willing to share their secrets every time. :)

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Handy hints for preparing a quilt for professional quilting.

If you are thinking of sending a quilt top to a professional longarm quilter, and are wondering what you can do to make sure you get the best possible result, I have some suggestions for you here.

Quilt Top:
1. The quilt top should be relatively square and the borders should lie flat. To avoid fullness in your border, measure through the centre of your quilt top, cut a strip of border fabric to that measurement, then pin to the body of the quilt and sew. Do not cut a long strip for the border and then sew as the top fabric will ‘walk’ and you will have wavy borders.
2. Clip loose threads and press quilt top well with seams lying flat in the proper direction and no tucks. This is especially important for in- the- ditch quilting.
3. Stay-stitch 1/8” from outer edge of quilt top if there are any biases or pieced edges, or thin fabrics. This stabilises the edges, helps keep the quilt square, and protects it from the pull of the machine rollers.

1. Backs should be approximately 4” larger than the quilt top on all sides, squared and pressed.
2. Backing seams should have all selvedges removed, with a ½-1” seam allowance pressed open. Bed sheets are too thin for the machine tension to work properly and may not wear well.

I have a large selection of wide backings here, and a good selection of battings including black.

I hope you are making the most of the cold days enjoying your sewing, take care.