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Not being able to afford quilting

Not being able to afford quilting

Old 04-16-2020, 12:55 PM
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Default Not being able to afford quilting

I was just wondering if there is anyone else who likes to make quilts, but can't afford to have them quilted. It's so frustrating that I have all these pretty quilts waiting to be quilted and they just continue to sit. I know people will say to just machine quilt it, but I don't have that talent. And having a longarmer quilting it makes it so beautiful. It completes the hard work you did. Does anyone know a longarmer that would accept payments. That way I could get my quilts done. Thanks for any help.
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Old 04-16-2020, 01:11 PM
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I would think a business person would take your quilt top and allow you to make payments, then work it into their schedule when you are close to finished paying for their services. When you make your last payment you pick up the quilt. It’s actually a pretty good deal for a longarmer because they could quilt it whenever they wanted to, making the scheduling more flexible.

Having said that, I’m not a longarmer, so I don’t really know about their business model.
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Old 04-16-2020, 01:14 PM
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I quilt my own quilts. First few looked pretty rough but practice makes it look pretty good.
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Old 04-16-2020, 01:24 PM
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Why not pay yourself in payments until you get enough to pay the LA in full?
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Old 04-16-2020, 01:32 PM
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The quilting down is the thorn in my projects. I really like the designing and piecing phase, not so much the quilting. I had access to a friend's long arm for several years and now that I'm spoiled, I no longer have access. I find that I am much happier moving the head/myself on a long arm than I am moving the quilt around with a tabletop machine. I do have a machine with a lovely big throat (sadly it has to go the shop) and although it could, I don't want to do anything larger than a twin on it and most of my unfinished projects now are queen sized. For years I did simple grids and curves on queen sized projects with fancier stuff in the borders using my old vintage machine but I honestly just don't want to wrestle with fabric any more. Without a long arm, I just can't really get what I want out of my quilting with my skill set and my equipment.

Last year I ran an ad on Craig's List, chatted with a couple of people but it didn't work out. Was going to try again when all this Covid stuff hit and I don't see it happening in the Seattle area this year, but I am looking to rent time on a home long arm set up on a regular basis. I'm willing to pay, but I can't really afford shop rates -- I'm looking at 2 days per month at $100, and of course I provide all the necessary thread, needles, batting, etc. and no training by the owner, and they can supervise me if they wish/until we are comfortable. Ideally it would be a win/win situation, like someone who travels regularly and would like a pet sitter, I can do both at the same time. Or just someone who isn't using their machine as much as they thought/could use a few bucks they aren't getting by quilting for other people.

We are going to buy a freezer with our stimulus check and fill it full of meat and vegies. We're not sure if I will get one or not, we do file taxes jointly and I report a small amount of interest income but I haven't worked in a few years. If we get anything for me too, I think I'm going to pay to get a quilt or two done -- the question is, which one(s)? Wouldn't be more than 2. Ones that I want to give or ones that I want to keep...

Other than that, I keep trying to win the lottery so I can buy the house across the street and turn this entire 1200 sf house into sewing studio. Ahh... lottery dreams...
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Old 04-16-2020, 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Jingle View Post
I quilt my own quilts. First few looked pretty rough but practice makes it look pretty good.
I'm doing the same. They don't look as perfect as they would if a longarmer did them, but they are all mine and I"m slowly getting better.

If you really don't have the cash now, but could make payments, why not just put the money that you would use in a jar each week and then when you have enough take the top to the longarmer and have her quilt it. It would save her having to store your quilt top until you pay her enough for her to go ahead and quilt it.

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Old 04-16-2020, 01:50 PM
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Do you have a longarmer that you could make a trade with? I quilted a couple of quilts for a guild member and she did all of my Christmas baking including Christmas cake. We were both very happy and thought we got a great deal.
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Old 04-16-2020, 01:54 PM
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Or you could hand quilt them, like people have done for a long time! Even do big stitch quilting, it's a lot faster. Or tie them. Then at least you would get to use them instead of just looking at them.
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Old 04-16-2020, 02:01 PM
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My suggestion would be to sell your unfinished tops on Etsy, keeping your favorite ones aside, and use the proceeds to have them quilted.
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Old 04-16-2020, 02:10 PM
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I think the idea of making payments to yourself until you have saved enough to pay for having someone quilt for you is not a bad idea. As a longarm owner, I would be very hesitant to rent out my machine to a stranger. Kind of like letting a stranger drive your car (it nearly cost as much as my car). Shops that rent out their machines have to have extra insurance in case anything happens to the machine or the user because accidents do happen even to experienced quilters. That would be another reason someone would be hesitant to want to do this. Perhaps you can find someone who is new to longarming and would take your quilts to help them build up confidence. I did that when I was starting out.
Maybe you aren't really looking for solutions, just want to vent your frustration at not being able to afford to send out your quilts. We all sympathize. Quilting really is an expensive hobby.
Tall Chick's idea is a good one, too.
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