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New to Quilting - will my machine work?

New to Quilting - will my machine work?

Old 07-30-2020, 05:30 AM
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Location: Waterford Michigan
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Welcome to the QB from SE Michigan! It is always great to have a new quilter join us. You will have a load of fun! First turn it on the machine to be sure it is still working which it should be. I would give it a good oiling and change the needle. That is a good starter. If you have the manual it should show you the oiling points. If you are unsure or the machine runs sluggishly I would take it in for a tune up at a local repair shop. Only because it has been setting so long. I am excited for you that you are beginning this adventure. I have to tell you this, and I am sure others will agree, the love of quilting can be addictive, you will have so much fun and seeing and feeling a completed quilt is sheer joy Again welcome to the QB!
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Old 07-30-2020, 05:33 AM
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First: Put in new needle.
Put drop of oil in bobbin if a top loading bobbin.....this is ŗ wick...looks like fuzz in the middle of the bobbin casing.
Sew on a practice piece of fabric.
You will be fine.

Last edited by QuiltnNan; 07-30-2020 at 05:20 PM. Reason: shouting/all caps
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Old 07-30-2020, 06:03 AM
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Originally Posted by jules83 View Post

And Jordan, I will try very hard to take your words to heart about not worrying about seams lining up. I tend to be a perfectionist with things and I need to practice ďletting goĒ and just doing.
remember that seams not lining up makes it an art quilt! Matching seams are one designer's idea of how it should look - we are in control of what it will finally look like!
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Old 07-30-2020, 06:18 AM
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Originally Posted by ktbb View Post
remember that seams not lining up makes it an art quilt!
I love this idea. Makes me, and probably a whole lot of others feel better knowing that
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Old 07-30-2020, 08:23 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2020
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I really shouldnít have given the impression that I know how to sew...my experience is very limited. I spent the evening cleaning my machine up and getting familiar with the parts and settings; felt like I had to learn everything all over again. I also found a digital user manual on Etsy and grabbed that as well. The machine still appears to be in good running order; Iíve got a shopping list put together and oil is on it. And new needles!

Rff1010, my machine has a plastic foot on it. Is that different than a piecing foot? I googled piecing foot and saw some were metal.

Iíve also been busy going down the bunny hole of patterns and fabrics 🤪 I found this pattern that Iím thinking about trying in a throw size: https://suzyquilts.com/shop/maypole-...tern-download/

I like the idea of sticking to solid colors and straight lines. I just need to pick out the color combo! I really appreciate the encouragement and warm welcome from everyone! 😊

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Old 07-31-2020, 12:11 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: Gainesville, Missouri
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Welcome from Southern Missouri! You are absolutely going to love it here, I've been here for about a year and it's my ultimate go-to place when I need some information or advice.

As long as your machine is still purring along, it'll work fine. The extra bells and whistles are nice to have on a machine, but I prefer the 'oldies but goodies', I love my vintage Dressmaker, I have a newer mini-machine that has a few extra stitches but I always work from my vintage gal. We are thick as thieves.

A big suggestion is look up Missouri Star Quilt Company on YouTube and watch their videos. Jenny Doan is an absolute gem and breaks down some of the more complicated looking quilts into something anyone getting started can do. They've got a whole series just on getting started and then a huge playlist of quilt tutorials. Whenever I'm in a major quilting mode, I have their playlist running for background noise, it's like having your own personal quilting mentor in the room with you.

Again, welcome to the board and welcome to quilting, I think once you get settled in, you're going to have a blast!
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Old 07-31-2020, 04:39 AM
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Location: Yorkville, IL
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Welcome to the board. I have several machines and I really love the older ones best. Yes, you really need to oil your machine if it has been unused for 8 years but I am betting it will be a work horse. I went with my mother to her hand quilting group when I was visiting her. I had sewn clothing, curtains, etc but never a quilt. I had so much fun that day and on the way home we stopped at Hancock’s in Dallas I I got a rotary cutter, cutting mat,a book “Favorite .. “ and I was set to go. That was 18 years ago and I am still hooked. Happy quilting!

Last edited by QuiltnNan; 07-31-2020 at 05:22 PM. Reason: shouting/all caps
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Old 07-31-2020, 09:00 AM
Join Date: Mar 2015
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Welcome to the board. The people here are incredibly nice, helpful, and just seem to be great people. I want to caution you on one thing (not quilting). You are not allowed to use all capitals when posting. They will edit out that word, which can change the whole meaning. So if you ever read a post that seems wrong, it was probably edited. I noticed that you had yours edited for caps.
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Old 08-01-2020, 06:40 AM
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I learned to quilt mostly from Youtube.com. I'm still just a beginner after five or so years. I average about two quilts per year. On that pattern - I would suggest you pick a pattern that is for beginners, not intermediate quilters. The one you chose is not an easy quilt, in my opinion. Again, this is just my opinion, but choose one that has large pieces. Also, solid colors will show mistakes, if you make any. And again, that quilting pattern isn't easy, either. Straight lines that repeat are the hardest do when quilting. And on solid colors, you will see every variation of the line. If you are a perfectionist, it will drive you up the wall.

I, too like Jenny Doan of Missouri Star Quilt. She doesn't strive for perfection. If you start out striving for perfection, you are bound to fail.

My favorite videos I've found are from someone who doesn't seem to make videos anymore. She, however, shows some basic things that I was glad to learn even when it was long past my first quilt. I go back to her videos regularly. Her name is Donna Poster. Here is my favorite of her videos. That pattern she is showing would be a good one for a first quilt. It's a "rail fence". Also, maybe a "disappearing nine patch", which was my first quilt would be a good choice.

On actually quilting, I've either made small quilts that I can quilt on my sewing machine or planned to send them out to be quilted. That pattern you chose would be considered "custom quilting", that long arm quilters charge extra for.

Everyone here is very kind and helpful to new quilters and will give advice to the best of their ability, so if you get stuck, come back. Also, photos always help. My mentor quilters were on another forum, but they were invaluable resources when I had questions.


Last edited by bkay; 08-01-2020 at 06:54 AM. Reason: spacing
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Old 08-01-2020, 08:43 AM
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That age Elna is a wonderful machine. My favorite machine is a 1973 62C - looks very similar, but light blue.

I don't want to be the downer here, but I don't quilt with mine. It is fine for piecing as long as you use a leader to keep little pieces from going into the zigzag hole - I don't have a straight stitch plate, but quilting was difficult because my machine has self adjusting tension and it was tight for quilting. If you can adjust your tension, you'll be fine. That being said, I did completely finish one two or three quilts on it before I picked up a much older Singer 301. The 301 quilts while Miss Elna does everything else from leather belts to silk organza wedding dresses.

Edit to add: If our machines are similar, that plastic foot is intended for embroidery and applique work, but works fine for regular stitching. How do I know? My cat who likes shiny things ran off with my regular foot. I finally had to buy a new one from SewingPartsOnline. A generic - the Elna is very pricey.

Last edited by Irishrose2; 08-01-2020 at 08:55 AM.
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