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Thread: Hand quilting

  1. #1

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    I am a hand quilter and hand appliquer. I have made full size quilts for friends and family and charged them nothing. However, I now have acquaintenances asking me to make them quilts. Does anyone have any advice on how much to charge. I know some people charge by the yards of thread they use and some people charge by the square foot of quilting. My problem is that this makes the quilts very expensive and I don't think people will pay that much. HELP! I want to be paid adequately, but I want my quilts to sell, also.

  2. #2

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    Hello there, I wanted to respond to your notice on the quilters board.. I also am a 'hand quilter' but unlike you, I just can't bear to part with my quilts.. unless I give them away. I just feel that the time one has to spend making a hand made, quilt.. is so much time, that even if you think of charging $1.00 an hour you would come out on the short end. So.. well since I am not selling any, as so many people want, but don't want to pay the cost, I just tell everyone.. that I don't sell quilts.. But, If it comes to a gift, they know it is special. Keep up the good work...
    I find that when I sit and do the top stitching, and such, that my index finger of the left hand gets to be like leather. I find that a traditional thimble I can't actually tell when my needle hits it.. to give me a small stitch. BUT.. the other day, I got one of the tourniquets from the lab.. (when I had blood work done).. took some of the tourni. and made a stretchie type thimble to go over my index finger.. Hey it works great....
    Happy stitching.....
    Sharon
    srmsmile@hotmail.com

  3. #3
    Leslee's Avatar
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    Do they have to have full-sized quilts? What if you limited your for-sale quilts to a certain size...say, 45 x 45 or smaller. The fabric, thread and batting wouldn't be a great expense. A small quilt would really showcase your hand quilting and applique skills, and anybody that appreciates your quilts and wants to own one should love one of any size!

  4. #4

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    Thank you. That is wonderful advice. I will definitely try that.

  5. #5

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    Hello, pamluvs2quilt:
    I read your question and answers about selling, etc. I am a beginner quilter, and have made about 4 or 5 quilts. I do plan to give one away for Christmas (even with all the mistakes)...my sister will love it nevertheless.
    I have a question: when doing hand quilting, do you always use a hoop or do you ever just have the quilt sandwich in your hand and do the quilting? I watch Simply Quilts, and Alex was demonstrating using the hoop, but it seems a little aquard for a lefty...any suggestions?

    Tx, Sibble

  6. #6
    Boo
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    Sibble, I am also a lefty and not sure if that the reason I found a hoop too hard to use, but I agree. I finally took a class from a world renown quilter and guess what? She doesn't use a hoop. Somehow, that made all the difference for me. Like giving me permission to hold a quilt and experiment. For me the control is better and therefore, my stitches got smaller and more uniform. One recomendation, practice before each new project. Start with a pillow top. But always do a practice piece before beginning, as it will remind your body of the rythm needed. There truly are no right or wrong methods to quilt. You decide what works for you. Don't be intimidated by the belief of someone else. Quilting is supossed to be fun! Enjoy the process as much as the finished product.

  7. #7
    Moderator kathy's Avatar
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    I've never tried it without a hoop or frame of some kind to keep things tight, I would be afraid of pulling my stitches too tight and causing puckers, or bunching. I know for a fact that I can't embroidery without a hoop!

  8. #8

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    Nov 2006
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    Hi Pam,

    All I can tell you is that the Amish in Pennsyvania (sorry if I spelled it incorrectly) spend a winter on one quilt, all done by hand, the local asking price for a queen sized quilt is about $600 dollars. I just read that in this months National Geographic. She said in the article that she gets frustrated if someone complains that this was the cost of their entire bed because they have very little knowledge of all the work that went into it. Anyone who goes to the trouble of hand quilting really deserves to charge that kind of price in my opinion.

    However, I'm in the place your speaking of as well... the last gal (who was close but not exactly family) I asked her to buy all the supplies and gave her an idea of what to buy. It did not bother me much to do it this way because I was going to be quilting this winter anyway - and at least it saved me the cost of the supplies and saved me a bit of space in my closet.... dunno if that makes sense.

    anyway, my two cents for what they are worth...

    Lori

  9. #9

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    Great point. Thanks for replying.

  10. #10

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    Jun 2007
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    Maryland, USA
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    Quote Originally Posted by pamluvs2quilt
    I know some people charge by the yards of thread they use and some people charge by the square foot of quilting. My problem is that this makes the quilts very expensive and I don't think people will pay that much. HELP! I want to be paid adequately, but I want my quilts to sell, also.
    Hi Pamluvs2quilt,

    Leslee's advice to make smaller quilts so there won't be such a large time and materials investment makes perfect sense.

    At the same time, I'm wondering what your price would be if you used the square foot method? Not trying to be nosy about it, but I'm thinking: while you wouldn't make a whole stack of large quilts to find they're more expensive than folks are willing to pay, maybe it would be worth making just one large piece, and pricing it by the sq ft, to see what happens?

    Just a thought!
    Crystal

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