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Thread: Long arm help

  1. #1
    JLD
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    Long arm help

    I was wondering if any of our long arm folks on here might be willing to help me. I am still learning. One of the things I am trying to do right now requires going back over stitching. (back stitching) I was wondering if you have any tips for staying on the stitching. Seems like I keep getting off of it. I know it wont be perfect but I am hoping for better than what I am doing. Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Super Member alleyoop1's Avatar
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    I'm relatively new to LA quilting but the one thing that I keep seeing over and over on the Quilting Board is to practice, practice and then practice more. Slow down your machine, and take it easy. Don't get discouraged if you don't stay exactly on your previous stitches, just know that as you gain experience you will get better.
    Proud grandma of Coast Guard grandson and Air Force granddaughter!

  3. #3
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    I agree with Practice Practice Practice..... but if you are too impatient as I am & can't stay on the line when backstitching remember this very good advice from a very experienced quilter friend of mine. "Don't worry about it, once you wash the quilt & it crinkles up, no one will notice." And she's right. We are our own worst critics.

    That being said, if you are going to enter a quilt in a show, make sure you pick a quilting design that doesn't go back over any of the other quilting you've done, at least until you are a more accurate quilter & can figure out where your needle is going to stitch. Practice following previous stitching, whether going backwards or forwards, on all your utility quilts.

    I am a beginner (only did 8 quilts so far) & I am learning really fast that most people (family & friends) are not going to look at the quilt nearly as closely as you will & what you see as a sewing or quilting flaw, they either don't notice or think you did it on purpose to make the quilting interesting. I tend to use contrasting thread for the quilting (really shouldn't because I am not very good, but love the effect) and all my errors show up really bad. No one cares! They love the quilts anyway. I've been told to have fun with the quilting & the accuracy will come. Hope so!
    Last edited by Barb in Louisiana; 09-24-2012 at 04:30 AM.
    Sew a Little, Love a Lot & Live like you were dying!

  4. #4
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    My lesson has been to slow way way down, even slower than I thought possible. This allows much more control. Also, I use rulers a lot which also helps.

  5. #5
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    Practice, practice, practice.
    Try using a thinner thread.
    Don't worry about it.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Toni C's Avatar
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    I have a handy small ruler that I slowly ease along the line pivoting in curves to backtrack. I must say I was very surprised to find out that i could do it without the ruler once I got warmed up. I still use it though LOL

  7. #7
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    Leah Day has a good site for machine quilting on her domestic machine. She back tracks but uses a lighter thread so it s less noticeable. Check out her videos on the free motion quilt project?

  8. #8
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    Look ahead. Don't look where the needle is, look where you want it to be. Yeah sounds crazy but it works. Additionally, don't worry about not hitting the mark with a perfect backtrack. Even professional show quilters don't get it perfect every time.

  9. #9
    JLD
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    Thanks for all the tips. I find that there are times I still get discouraged. I think I should be able to do things that I haven't even tried. I will use the tips and see what I can do. I am very much a perfectionist so I find that I have to let go of that a bit in doing this. Now off to take out what I had done and start over. This time going slow and using a ruler to help and not worry if it isn't spot on. Thanks again.

  10. #10
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    Go slow and practice a lot more then you think you should have to. I just returned from the Machine quilting show in Ohio and was amazed how slow the instructors back tracked and followed patterns.


    Quote Originally Posted by JLD View Post
    I was wondering if any of our long arm folks on here might be willing to help me. I am still learning. One of the things I am trying to do right now requires going back over stitching. (back stitching) I was wondering if you have any tips for staying on the stitching. Seems like I keep getting off of it. I know it wont be perfect but I am hoping for better than what I am doing. Thanks in advance.

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