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Thread: Quality of Tools

  1. #71
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Sonoma County, CA
    I think "buy the best you can afford" advice is good for ANY artistic endeavor; but "what you can afford" is a bigger statement than it looks like. I decided I couldn't afford a big sewing machine at first; then later I decided I NEEDED one and suddenly I could afford it just fine. My income didn't change one bit, but "what I could afford" did because quilting had become more important to me.

    I suppose usually I'm buying the best I can get for the task at hand. But 'best' is subjective, too, and the task at hand may or may not need that professional-level touch.

    I DO consider myself an artist, but I don't specialize. I explore and enjoy. I have a whole garage full of past obsessions, all of which influence or are incorporated with each new thing I discover.

  2. #72
    Super Member chris_quilts's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    leavenworth, ks
    Blog Entries
    Quote Originally Posted by TanyaL View Post
    What do we say to all those quilters who are using older mechanical sewing machines who sew such beautiful 1/4 seams? My Pfaff zig-zag 360 bought new in Germany in 1964 and my new Brother embroidery machine using a 12 inch hoop can not sew a straight stitch as well as my Singer 201. And it has never since 1947 been in the shop for a repair. But it is not the best that I can afford; but certainly the best for putting a quilt top together. And I send the tops out for quilting by choice. There's room for all of us.
    Tanya, thanks for this thought. I have enjoyed reading this discussion. I gave away a fine good working Singer that was 25 years old because it was too new and it irritated me that I couldn't remember how it threaded even though that had been my only machine for roughly 22 years. BUT... I discovered vintage machines, became addicted and now only have vintage and antique sewing machines that I use. My go-to, gotta use it, every day machine is a black long-bed 301a Singer. I bought a 2nd 301 for a backup cuz I love them so much and I didn't want my DD using my 301. I am an artist so I'm told by recipients of my quilts and I both piece and quilt with the 301.
    I meant to behave......but there were too many other options

  3. #73
    Power Poster
    Join Date
    May 2008
    I think many people will buy 'better' tools, equipment, and supplies equipment as their interest and knowledge in a particular area grows - carpenters, welders, sewers/quilters, cooks/chefs, other artists (in whatever medium they are using)

    I think as one becomes more experienced, one becomes more aware what is 'appropriate' to use for particular projects.

    I have learned that the 'biggest/'bes'/most expensive,most complicated' isn't always the most useful thing.

    In some cases, I don't think there is a line that is crossed when a person becomes 'an artist' and stops being 'a hobbyist.'

  4. #74
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Bosque County, Texas
    In some cases, I don't think there is a line that is crossed when a person becomes 'an artist' and stops being 'a hobbyist.'

    bearisgray, I think you are very correct. Some are artists from the day they start. They put together wonderful, singing colors and stunning quilts and only have to learn the mechanics of sewing the fabric together to achieve the wonderful original results that they already see in their minds. They make us OHHHHH and AHHHHH from their first efforts.

  5. #75
    Super Member quiltjoey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Interesting thread. IMHO: having taking drawing, painting (watercolor, acryilics, oils) with poor/good/best canvases, and pencils, charcoals, paints,etc., I found "tools" don't make the artist. Some people paint all their lives but never become "artists". I just think of all the most beautiful needlework/quilts in museums done by people with only materials of all kind, needles, and threads. The talent lies in the hands of those with the needles and vision...

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