Last week I gave a presentation about long arm quilting for the South Bay Area Modern Quilt Guild (SBAMQG) at Hart's Fabrics in Santa Cruz, CA. At first I was a little nervous but quickly got over that once I began speaking to the fairly small crowd of thirty quilters with lots of questions. It was great introducing new people to the art of long arm quilting and by the end of the evening I had two new quilting customers who wanted their quilt tops quilted by me at my business, The Quilted Lemon. Yay!
I truly believe that there's a time and place for the three ways to finish your quilts: by hand (with thin quilting threads or thicker perle cotton), on your domestic sewing machine (DSM), or on a long arm quilting machine (either one you use or by sending it out to be quilted by check.) One way isn't better than the other. It's simply a matter of what will best work with what your need is and that of the quilt. If you're working on a small wall-hanging then you can practice your free-motion quilting (FMQ) skills on your DSM. Perhaps you'd rather spend your evenings hand-quilting on your slow project that may take years until it's completed. Every stitch becomes a bit meditative and that quilt is then more than a quilt. Or maybe you've pieced a quilt that is too large for you to handle on your DSM, a queen or king sized quilt for your bed. That's when it's nice to have a long arm quilting machine available to finish that quilt.
Photos taken by Karen Foster of Capitola Quilter.
Oh my, I believe it's time to get my hair cut again. Ponytails may be comfortable but aren't the best look. It also seems like I do talk with my hands just like my mom does. The second picture is of one of my quilting sampler practice quilts that I did when I first got Freddie the longarm. Everyone loved those interlocking circles. I do too and am thinking of an interesting quilt that will feature them in it. Unfortunately that lovely print doesn't allow the quilting to show up. A reminder that custom quilting looks better on solids or smaller prints. I'm working on a new quilt top that'll become a better quilting sampler .. this one will incorporate some custom quilting as well as pantograph designs.