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Thread: quilting on a machine

  1. #1

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    For all you experienced ladies that quilt on a machine. Do you quilt the entire quilt at one time or do you divide it into sections and then put it together. If you sew it all at one time, how do you fold, roll or whatever to get it under your machine? Also I am thinking about ordering Penny's book, "Quilting for Beginners". Does anyone know about this book and is it worth the $60.00 to order it? Grannysherry

  2. #2
    Super Member Lisa_wanna_b_quilter's Avatar
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    I'm not really qualified to answer this because, as the name states, I'm a Wanna-b. That being said, my one and only real quilt was sort of done following Fun and Done from Bayside quilting. I made regular blocks and them quilted them onto backing pieces like the Fun and Done pattern. Here is a link to that.

    https://www.baysidequilting.com/stor...idCategory=284

    This second link looks like a good way to quilt in sections if your pattern doesn't lend itsself to sashings.

    http://creativeribbons.blogspot.com/...as-you-go.html

    All the real quilters on here will have great ideas for you. These are just how I worked out my situation. I have limited skills and a tiny sewing machine, so this worked for me.

    Good luck!

  3. #3
    Super Member Maride's Avatar
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    You can do it either way. I usually do it all at once, but one particular quilt I did was so big I couldn't get battin big enough, so I did a quilt as you go method. There are different techniques for that and I am sure someone else will jump in and help.

    what I did was to make my blocks 21 x 21, layer them and quilt them. when they were all done, I sewd them together with a wide zig-zag stitch. One side had binding on the front and the back. After joining them together I folded the binding over to the other side and hand sewed it. I am sure this is clear as mud. I will try to get some pictures.

    Maria

  4. #4
    Super Member justwannaquilt's Avatar
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    First off check you local library for the book, if you find it there, check it out and see if you like it, if you do then you can either renew it until you are done (at least a couple of weeks) or you can then order the book! Even if your library does not have the book they may have a book share program and they may be able to get it for you!

    Second I am no expert but right now I am working on two "quilts" one is 50x62 and the other is 48x60 I am quilting both using a Brother xl2600i(super small walmart machine that I got to learn to sew on!). I just roll the quilt up and keep the majority of the quilt behind the machine! I think I would be ok even if these were bigger, but I just didn't want them big they are for the couch not my bed! I have read where people use a broom stick to roll their quilt around, you could also purchase dowl rods and do the same thing with. I have also seen people use bicycle clips to hold the roll together while they quilt! It can be done!

  5. #5
    Super Member joeyoz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grannysherry
    For all you experienced ladies that quilt on a machine. Do you quilt the entire quilt at one time or do you divide it into sections and then put it together. If you sew it all at one time, how do you fold, roll or whatever to get it under your machine? Also I am thinking about ordering Penny's book, "Quilting for Beginners". Does anyone know about this book and is it worth the $60.00 to order it? Grannysherry
    I usually just keep everything loose. I just let it puddle and make sure it is flat where I am quilting. That way it isn't all stiff when you are trying to move it around. It is too stiff if you try rolling it up. I, personally, start with the middle row, just thinking about 1 block at a time. I start at one end of the row and quilt to the other end of it. When I am done with that row, I start on the next, just doing one block at a time.

    I hope that made sense and I hope it helped. You will want to make a practice sandwich and practice on it first. I do that before every project.

  6. #6
    Super Member Mamagus's Avatar
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    This is completely off topic but I really think that if more men were quilters there would already be an affordable and easy to use sewing machine that doesn't have that big chunk of metal, wires and motors impeding our quilting space.

    Can't you see it? A big cone shaped thingy that comes down from the ceiling and a large slick quilting surface so you could freemotion until your arms drop off!!


  7. #7
    Power Poster Mousie's Avatar
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    i quilt in sections, bc of fibromyalgia. I have the bicycle clips, table, etc. for doing it the regular way, but my muscles etc. get too tired, shoving and pushing all that around...and the bending over to baste...yeeeoowy!!!
    Marti Michell's Quilting in Sections, is excellent, and Divide and Conquer is also excellent, especially if you like applique.
    I haven't done any FMQ...used some stitches on my machine, crosshatched, and SITD. Still learning.
    But when I get ready, I will use freezer paper, not going to put all that money into those fancy paper stencils.

    Mamagus wrote: Can't you see it? A big cone shaped thingy that comes down from the ceiling and a large slick quilting surface so you could freemotion until your arms drop off!!

    I can see it...and I am all over it...although, it wouldn't take that long for my arms to fall off. Guess I could sew them back on...like a rag doll, lol :lol:

  8. #8

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    Well you have all helped so I think I will start with the block method and then if that isn't the thing for me I'll go to the full quilt thing and if that isn't right then I'll try a different way. Who knows I might come up with the master plan to quilting for everyone. lol

  9. #9
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    I love your attitude!!! I would not be a bit surprised when you come up with a better method for all of us to use!!! :D 8) :mrgreen:

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    Hey my house is in blocks and stitches.YEA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. #11
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grannysherry
    For all you experienced ladies that quilt on a machine. Do you quilt the entire quilt at one time or do you divide it into sections and then put it together. If you sew it all at one time, how do you fold, roll or whatever to get it under your machine? Also I am thinking about ordering Penny's book, "Quilting for Beginners". Does anyone know about this book and is it worth the $60.00 to order it? Grannysherry
    I couldn't find that book on Amazon. Do you have a link? It's just that $60 is a *lot* of money for a beginning quilter's book. There are many good ones on the market, most of them priced under $20 or $30.

    Aside from the one block at a time method of dividing up a quilt, there is another method that makes quilting a large quilt easier. Basically you keep the top and backing intact, but cut the batting into 3 lengths (using a large curvy line). You sandwich and quilt the middle first with just the middle piece of batting inside, leaving a few inches on each side of the batting unquilted. You hand sew one of the remaining pieces of batting to the middle piece of batting, layer that side and quilt it, then do the same with the other side. This way there is much less batting under the arm of the machine at any one time, plus the finished quilt appears to have been quilted as a whole piece.

    Cutting curves in the batting means the pieces will go together exactly when you re-connect them, plus there will be no obvious straight line in the quilt where the batting was pieced.

    I have a book on that method, but can't remember the author at the moment. Will post if it comes to mind later.

  12. #12
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    I quilt big quilts in sections. I got the techniques from Marti Michell's book, Quilting in Sections, which I highly recommend.


  13. #13
    Super Member DA Mayer's Avatar
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    There are much more reasonably priced books. Check out Martingale books and when I think of it, I will tell you another discount book site.

  14. #14
    Super Member DA Mayer's Avatar
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    There are much more reasonably priced books. Check out Martingale books and when I think of it, I will tell you another discount book site. I have ordered from them and I get their catalog once in a while. Do you have a Joanns or Hancock Fabric by you? You could use the coupons from their newsletters to purchase a book.

  15. #15
    Power Poster sandpat's Avatar
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    I quilt the entire quilt. I just stuff it through and then fluff it up. I smooth out where I am quilting at the time. I also use an ironing board on my left side to help hold the quilt up so the weight doesn't drag it away from what I am trying to do. I do all the quilt in the ditch first as that kind of locks everything in place, then I proceed to do whatever other quilting I want to do.

    Good luck and most importantly...have fun!

  16. #16
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    I do the whole quilt at once. I like the puddle method too. Rolling it up makes it too hard to handle. It seems to work for me.

  17. #17
    Senior Member pam1966's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sandpat
    I quilt the entire quilt. I just stuff it through and then fluff it up. I smooth out where I am quilting at the time. I also use an ironing board on my left side to help hold the quilt up so the weight doesn't drag it away from what I am trying to do. I do all the quilt in the ditch first as that kind of locks everything in place, then I proceed to do whatever other quilting I want to do.

    Good luck and most importantly...have fun!
    I just discovered that stitching in the ditch helps out too!

    I too just either roll it up on that side or somehow squeeze it in. I haven't been doing this long, so if you come up with a better way I would love it. 8)

  18. #18
    Super Member omak's Avatar
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    Don't forget to go up to the top of this webpage, click on "Search" type in free-motion quilting
    or machine quilting
    or home quilting
    You will find a lot of pages that have been put in here to answer all your questions and encourage you in your endeavor.
    You will be fine :wink:

  19. #19
    Power Poster sandpat's Avatar
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    Another tip I learned is to QID with the monofilament on the top...That hides the fact that some of us are not quite sooo perfect....then do all your other quilting with whatever thread you prefer. I've been doing that and it does ..well, not really hide, but sure doesn't make those missing point jump out either!

  20. #20
    Super Member adrianlee's Avatar
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    Prism99. Do I understand this right, you do your quilting in 3 large sections? I'm trying to picture how to do this. Maybe my brain ran out of film!

  21. #21
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    i quilt my big quilts in sections, i lay out the top batting and bottom like i would as if i were going to do itall then i decide how big of a section i want to quilt at a time ( maybe divide it in fours or 3rds) and starting in the middle of the quilt i spray baste the section im doing first then the top of the quilt that i am not going to quilt yet i fold back and cut the batting number it as to where it will go back in later set it to the side then i dont have so much bulk to roll as i am quilting after doing the middle section i lay the quilt out put in the next sections batting spray it and quilt it then go on the the next section i find this a lot easier than trying to quilt the whole thing under my small sewing machine

  22. #22
    Junior Member Campbell34's Avatar
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    I have just finished a very large quilt for my King size bed, I quilted the 12 large appliqued blocks then I stippled around the blocks and the sashing,leaving a small amount to add the outer edge parts, then I added the 20 inch drop all around the edge of the quilt,quilting and stippling , it was not that hard , I have an Aurora 440 machine , same size as my old 930 Bernina from many years ago, First I layed the backing out on the dining room table and pinned it together with the batting and the 12 blocks that had been sewn together, the batting was very thin, I think that is part of the answer to doing a large quilt on a regular sewing machine, I had the dining room table pulled up close to the machine to carry the bulk of the quilt as I quilted it ,(B.E.G.) My sewing machine is set up in a horne cabinet in the kitchen , it has a drop leaf along the back of the machine , so I pull it out from the wall and it gives me lots of support behind the machine ,No room to eat but who cares!!! I did roll the quilt and started the quilting in the center blocks from the center sashing out to the edge , then I quilted the blocks the same way . As I quilted the roll got smaller,After I quilted the center area I added the backing added batting sewing it to the other batting with a basting stitch to hold it together, then I added the top .The top and bottom edges were added with right sides facing each other for the first part, then I pinned them down and quilted all around the quilt , in the ditch for the borders, then finished up with stippling , then adding the binding.Planning on making a large wall hanging to go with it , Southwest with pots and beads, to hang over the head of the bed, So experiment and for petes sake have fun,

  23. #23
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianlee
    Prism99. Do I understand this right, you do your quilting in 3 large sections? I'm trying to picture how to do this. Maybe my brain ran out of film!
    I haven't found a good explanation of how to do this on the web; the excellent book that explains it is packed away in a box and I can't remember the author's name.

    Only the batting is divided into thirds; the top and backing are left entire. You layer the middle piece of the batting into your quilt as usual, and quilt that section first. This eliminates tons of bulk under the machine arm. Leave several inches on each side of that batting piece free of any quilting.

    When done quilting the middle section, pin the top and backing fabrics back away from the batting edge on one side, and attach the side piece of batting to the middle piece of batting. Unpin, layer, and quilt that side section next. Do the other side section the same way.

    You start with a large piece of batting cut to the right size for your quilt (with extra inches all around, of course). Instead of layering all 3 full-size pieces, at this point you take just that batting and cut it into 3 sections with a rotary cutter. Don't make this a straight cut; curve your cut back and forth about 6 inches so you end up wth a long, deeply curvy, wavy cut. Save the two side sections (mark each piece so you know which is right side up and top), and layer just the center piece to start quilting. It's a good idea to use a marker to make registration marks at a few points along the cut before separating the pieces, to make lining up these pieces easier later on.

    When it comes time to attach a batting side to the center piece of batting, the curving lines will help you make an exact fit so you are re-creating the full size piece of batting exactly as it was. Some people will machine zigzag the two pieces of batting together at this point, but I think it is better to take the time to hand tailor-tack the pieces together. Sharon Schamber shows how to do this stitch in her youtube video on basting a quilt. Once the two pieces of batting fabric have been re-attached, you layer the top and backing fabric over it and proceed with machine quilting that side.

    One of the reasons for making the deep curving lines for the cut, aside from matching the batting pieces perfectly, is that the finished quilt won't develop a line where the batting was connected -- from folding, or use. The slight weakness from the cut will be distributed across a wide area.

    It's really hard to describe all this adequately in a post! Wish I could find a website with some photos of the process. I'm not sure why more domestic machine quilters don't use this method for large quilts. It reduces bulk when working on that middle section of the quilt, which makes for easier free motion quilting of that area. You don't have so much bulk under the arm of the machine, and you also don't have so much drag and weight to the left of where you are working. You can just roll up the top and backing on each side so it stays pretty much out of the way. And this method doesn't affect the finished appearance of the quilt the way quilt-as-you-go or quilting in 3 separate sections would do.

  24. #24
    Super Member adrianlee's Avatar
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    Thank-you, I understand this now. I'll try this on a twin size first before I try one of my larger projects. I'll make sure I do the curvy lines on the batting and tailor tack the areas for front and back. Thanks again for the help.

  25. #25
    Power Poster sandpat's Avatar
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    Prism...I'm sooo glad you posted what you do. The reason I've never tried it is because I'd never heard of it or thought of it! I think I'll try it on an upcoming project...it just might make my life lots easier! Thanks for posting it!

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