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Thread: Long Arms - best tips and advice for a beginner

  1. #1
    Super Member kristen0112's Avatar
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    I am in the process of setting up my Grace Pro GMQ frame and Bailey's 17 inch home quilter machine. I would love to hear all the advice and tips you can give me before I start quilting my first quilt - which hopefully will be tomorrow if all goes well today.

  2. #2
    Super Member wolph33's Avatar
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    quilt on some plain fabric for practice before you put your 1st real quilt top on.you can practice different shapes and get your tension adjusted .try swirls and stipple-great for beginners.

  3. #3
    Super Member MaryStoaks's Avatar
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    Don't get too frustrated if things are not perfect at first. Every machine and user have to get to know each other. Adjusting tension to your needs is often an issue. Practice, practice, practice!

  4. #4
    Super Member Lakeview Quilting's Avatar
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    Relax, breathe, relax, breathe!!!!

  5. #5
    Super Member ckcowl's Avatar
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    practice, practice practice. even after almost 10 years i still on occassion load up a practice quilt to 'play on' when i first bought mine i bought a bolt of 90" wide muslin. i would cut off 2 - 2 yard pieces load them up with warm & natural batting and quilt away. gave us all the opportunity to try out the laser, pantos, free hand, writting, drawing....as each was taken off the frame it was either squared and a binding put on...play blankets for the kids/picnics car blankets ect. some went to the fire rescue dept. for emergency use and some instead of binding were cut into 4 pieces with the edges zig-zagged and gave those to the humane society. some of those practice quilts are still fun; i did find though as other people started using the machine, everyone likes to write their name so i kind of had to be careful what i did with them, but most of the time who ever was practicing kept their practice quilt to do with as they chose.

  6. #6
    carmen4him's Avatar
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    What a great idea. You get to practice and still bless someone else in the process. Thanks for the info. I will deffinately use this. LOL in Christ, Happy Stitchin
    Quote Originally Posted by ckcowl
    practice, practice practice. even after almost 10 years i still on occassion load up a practice quilt to 'play on' when i first bought mine i bought a bolt of 90" wide muslin. i would cut off 2 - 2 yard pieces load them up with warm & natural batting and quilt away. gave us all the opportunity to try out the laser, pantos, free hand, writting, drawing....as each was taken off the frame it was either squared and a binding put on...play blankets for the kids/picnics car blankets ect. some went to the fire rescue dept. for emergency use and some instead of binding were cut into 4 pieces with the edges zig-zagged and gave those to the humane society. some of those practice quilts are still fun; i did find though as other people started using the machine, everyone likes to write their name so i kind of had to be careful what i did with them, but most of the time who ever was practicing kept their practice quilt to do with as they chose.

  7. #7
    Super Member
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    Here's my advice. Make certain the rails are straight and level. It'll make a bigger difference, than you think. Then enjoy the quilting ride.

  8. #8
    Senior Member cindyg's Avatar
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    I practice with pencil and paper first. I practice McTavishing for backgrounds and feathers. Doing them on paper puts that motion into your head and it's easily transferred to the quilting machine. Practice practice practice.

  9. #9
    Power Poster
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    Practice, practice practice.

  10. #10
    Super Member ube quilting's Avatar
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    I spent about 1.5 years listening to people tell me my problem was the thread tension. I just couldn't get it right. One day a wonderful person told me my problem was not the tension, upper or lower, it turned out to be how tight the bobbin was wound which makes it look like a tension problem. Be sure to check how tight the tension on your bobbin winder is. It can make all the difference. The thread in the bobbin should be rather stiff when you press on it with your finger nail and should not make a depression in the wound thread. Of course this is just a guidline and all machines have their own feel and personalities. Congratulations and good luck!

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