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Thread: Machine Quilting for a beginner

  1. #1
    lizcake's Avatar
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    I have been hand quilting for years, but am now working on a baby quilt for a friend. Obviously, it needs to be finished within a certain time-frame as babies tend to have somewhat specific deadlines. Plus, for a baby, I would feel better about the heavier style of quilting that usually results from the machine work.

    I'm fairly certain I have the basics down, and will be working on a few doll-sized samples to practice before I mangle the top I'm laboring over right now. (the samples will actually be used as doll quilts too!!) I love the library, and my local branch had several books that I was able to get the idea from.

    The biggest question I really have right now is: do I really need the straight-stitch needle plate for my machine? I have ordered one, but Murphy's Law rules supreme and it is on backorder, no idea when it will be in stock. I have a Singer 6510, pretty basic machine, no fancy frills or attachments. How large a risk is the issue of the bulk of the quilt getting pulled into the zig-zag opening?

    Other than that, are there any other tip, hints and suggestions I can use before I begin? My quilting foot can in the mail today, and I will hopefully begin practicing tomorrow!!

  2. #2
    Super Member Stitchnripper's Avatar
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    I have never used one on any of my machines that don't have one. It has never been a problem for me. You could try it and see what happens. And the main thing is, practice, practice, practice. I am by no means an expert, but when I find that "sweet spot" of speed of machine coordinated with the movement of my hands on the quilt, I know it. Not that I am there all the time yet!!! One of those Supreme Sliders is good too.

  3. #3
    Power Poster erstan947's Avatar
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    Give it a try. I only have the zigzag plate on my machine and have not any problems.

  4. #4
    lizcake's Avatar
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    Supreme slider?

  5. #5
    Super Member katier825's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lizcake
    Supreme slider?
    http://www.freemotionslider.com/

    It's worth every penny!

    I have both plates for my machine and I find that I do better with the FMQ when using the single hole plate.

  6. #6
    Super Member grammyp's Avatar
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    I don't have a straight stitch plate, and have never had a problem. The walking foot is a must for me, but doesn't do well with tight curves. Go slow, be careful and it will be fine.

  7. #7
    Lady Shivesa's Avatar
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    I've been using the zigzag plate and haven't encountered any problems. I think you should be all set! Have fun, machine quilting can be a blast! :)

  8. #8
    Super Member nursie76's Avatar
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    Are you planning on free motion quilting? If so you will need a hopping foot (I think it is also called a darning foot). If you are just doing straight line stitching and stitch in the ditch you will need a walking foot as the keeps the thicker quilt sandwich layers from shifting.

    I have a single hole plate, and only find I need it when piecing as the 1/4 inch seam, sometimes causes the material to get sucked down into the plate.

    Good luck. So nice of you to make the little one a special quilt.

  9. #9
    Power Poster littlehud's Avatar
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    I have never used a straight stitch plate with my Pfaff and I do quilting on it all the time. It's perfect for my smaller projects.

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