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Thread: Things I do differently than I did a year ago...

  1. #1
    Super Member JanTx's Avatar
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    Things I do differently than I did a year ago...

    I just began quilting in the Fall of 2010 so it's fun to see how my projects have evolved in the past year.

    I'm no longer afraid of binding - even though I do pull the backing to the front instead of making a separate binding. (By this time next year I may be laughing at that.) I started with the "birthing" or "Pillowcase" style of sewing right sides together and turning the quilt.

    I laugh in the face of mitered corners. Last year I was squaring them off and calling it good enough. Now even odd angles are not a problem.

    I use those double pins to hold corners in place. They are such fine wire I can get the foot right over them before I pull them out and being double-pronged they hold both edges of the corner nicely in place.

    I used to cut the batting even with the quilt top, but now I leave a bit - maybe 1/4"? - and like the look and feel of the border better.

    Triangles were scary - and now they are old hat. HSTs? no problem.

    Though I may still have a wonky bit here and there or a seam line that's not completely straight things are much better.

    Working on the Farmer's Wife Sampler blocks has really improved my skill levels - don't know that I would have been up to some challenges without that. It's so easy to get comfortable with what you already know rather than branching out to new challenges.

    Can't wait to see where to go from here!
    So many quilts, so little time.

  2. #2
    Super Member JanTx's Avatar
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    Starch is my friend. Who knew? (Though that has evolved to Best Press when I feel like a splurge.)

    A stash is a fun thing to have. Over the Thanksgiving holiday I made 4 complete table toppers and one pieced top for a 5th - all from fabric Wal-mart had on SUPER sale last year. I know not the best fabric, but for the projects which will see use just once a year - it's okay.

    It is better to mark than to guess. (But DON'T use blue chalk! I have issues with blue chalk.)

    Anyone else? How have things changed in your world?
    So many quilts, so little time.

  3. #3
    Super Member Arleners's Avatar
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    I have started making custom quilts for people. Each quilt requested has presented a different technique and challange. Not just constructing the quilt, but in designing. I have expanded my knowledge in using Quilt Pro, my design program; Photoshop, for pictoral quilts; making tee shirt quilts.

    The next area I want to expand in FMQ. I play a little with it, but want to do so much more.
    Arlene

  4. #4
    Super Member 0tis's Avatar
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    Yes, I am starting to branch out to - I am working on a mariner's compass for a paying friend - have never paper-pieced before - bindings are getting better and better - I still need to work on fmq - I have a longarm but still struggle with that - but I am more confident in the last year and half.

  5. #5
    Senior Member SharBear's Avatar
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    Wow, great topic! Within the last year my skills have definately improved. I've tried paper pieceing, applique, English paper piecing, and FMQ. I've taken a mystery quilt workshop from a national teacher and two regional teachers took all the mystery out of triangles and making sure HST points don't dissapear! I've bought a new "to go" machine and more fabric than I had bought in my lifetime prior! It's been a great year!
    Sharon

  6. #6
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    I've joined a Guild and like to go to as many Quilt Workshops (presented by the speaker at our meeting) as I can. I still work part-time so can't go as much as I'd like. Also, I participate in Shop Hops. Love to visit the Quilt stores to see different patterns and fabrics!

    Great topic!

  7. #7
    Super Member juliea9967's Avatar
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    I have been quilting for over 10 years now and would love to hear more about these double pins. That's why I love quilting and computers. There is always something new to learn!

    What do the pins look like, and where do you get them from?
    Thanks,
    Julie

    Quote Originally Posted by JanTx View Post
    I


    I use those double pins to hold corners in place. They are such fine wire I can get the foot right over them before I pull them out and being double-pronged they hold both edges of the corner nicely in place.

    !

  8. #8
    Super Member Val in IN's Avatar
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    In the past year I've completely re-organized my sewing room which really helped me get more done. It's so hard to for me to get inspired in a mess. I learned how to ladder stitch my bindings so the stitches are almost invisible. I've learned to use glue instead of pins on the same bindings. I've really improved my handquilting skills since I can't afford to pay a LA'er anymore. I've also gotten better at FMQ and learned how to do QAYG. I think I've completed more projects and am still slogging through my ufo's in the hopes that sometime in the next year, my ufo's will all be finished. Maybe then, I can finally make ME a quilt!!

  9. #9
    Super Member happymrs's Avatar
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    Good topic, I agree! Not sure what all I tried for the first time this year, but my love for quilting continues to grow. It has also become more challenging with a retired hubby home 24/7 now. He recently set up his studio & is back into doing his hand tooled leather work, & that is helping, both of us already, thank goodness. I have played with applique more this year, & find I love back basting the best. Have played with some machine quilting, the Sharon Peterson way, with rubber cement. It's nice too, but seems like more prep work, so may switch to back basting those Rose of Sharon designs too. I have made lots of blocks this year, that seems to hold my interest. Thinking in this new year, I am going to start figuring out creative ways to put some of them together & make good use of them! Slowly getting use to this new board set up, I really have liked it here, & didn't want to leave! Getting use to it now & still learning my way around, but glad I stayed!... Enjoy the holidays everyone, they will be here & gone before we know it!...
    Nancy/NC...
    "Because Nice Matters"
    "Choose To Be Happy"

  10. #10
    Super Member grammy Dwynn's Avatar
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    I have been quilting since '03. I usually try and 'challenge' myself and try something new. Some will stay in my repertoire, some will not, but at least I gave it a try.
    "I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand." -Confucius

    https://picasaweb.google.com/home

  11. #11
    Super Member JanTx's Avatar
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    Julie - they are a bit pricey, but I love them and guard them carefully! See this thread:
    http://www.quiltingboard.com/picture...l-t148443.html

    I bought my first and only set of them in August and don't plan on buying more - hope to keep up with these. My local shop had a sale on notions and I got mine then.

    They are available wherever sewing notions are sold - I see them online anyway. Not sure about Joannes.

    Oh - I've been appliqueing, too. Didn't know I could and not sure quite what I'm doing, but it looks okay to me!
    Last edited by JanTx; 11-28-2011 at 07:31 AM.
    So many quilts, so little time.

  12. #12
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    What a fun and interesting thread. I have learned a new applique technique this past year. I hope to make a quilt in the new year with hand appliqued blocks. I went to a quilt retreat with a new friend and even took some classes alone. In the past I have felt the need to have my quilting friend in the same class with me. It was great to learn everyone is in the class to learn and I can go by myself. It is a fun way to make new friends. This was really a boost to my self confidence. I am anxious for the new year and the retreats and classes that I can attend. I also am learning my way around the new board and like it better all the time. Thanks to all who make it possible and keep it running.
    Lorraine

  13. #13
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    I tried and fell in love with celtic quilting, ventured into 3D blocks and patterns, made loads of yo-yo's and adore the heart shaped ones, arranged for our sewing group to meet monthly at another venue when our convenor and teacher 'retired' from the group after 10 years, I discovered this wonderful board and bought lots of fabric for one day.I learnt that it is okay to take a bit of a sabbatical from quilting (Yikes!) and started a project knitting little jerseys for AIDS babies and babies from disadvantaged communities.

  14. #14
    Super Member QuiltnLady1's Avatar
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    Julie -- here is another link for the "double" pins (Jan, I could not get to your link). They are called fork pins: http://www.clover-usa.com/product/0/...s_%2835_Pcs%29
    QuiltnLady1

    When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.

  15. #15
    Super Member Pat P's Avatar
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    In a year

    FMQ getting better in the year I have been making quilts (!0), Just finished a Bug Jar quilt, seems one learns from every quilt you make. Made my first rag quilts(2) One in same fabric the other in two coordinating fabrics (one fabric is easier) especially since the second one used a directional print-- does the ripper sound familiar? Did one is straight stitch the second one zig-zag. Like the zig zag better. Still did the large x in straight stitch. In the next year I want to use alot of my scraps from recent and years past to start making quilts for donation to different venues. Want to try new designs and work on improving matching seams etc. Hubby purchased a 9ft of hosie to attach to drain on washer when I told hime about plugging the drains Just can't take them to laundromat to plug up their drains. We will run the hose out the doors to the driveway and I will bablysit the washer just in case!!

  16. #16
    Senior Member AnnieF's Avatar
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    I took a miniature quilt paper piecing workshop from a national teacher. Will never make a miniature again but now know that if I have to make a very accurate seam....I can. I keep making baby quilts with my quilt ministry and find that working from someone else's stash is really fun. I also am taking a look at my own stash and am cutting and reorganizing. I've been quilting for 14 years...as a scrap quilter and found so many fabric pieces smaller than a FQ that I never remembered were in there. I now am cutting them into useable squares and strips and having them available as I make decisions about future quilts.

  17. #17
    Super Member Becky Crafts's Avatar
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    I'm a relatively new quilter & I'm loving it. I have learned about bringing up the bottom thread before FMQ, I have learned the difference between working with W&N vs Poly batting, I've learned the benefit of spray starch, I've made potholders with Insul-Brite, table runners & even mastered the french braid! I made coffee cozies, pieced quilts & panel quilts & have learned that panels are not as quick & easy as you'd think!! (I detailed every pineneedle). I have found a way to applique that doesn't turn me off & make me queazy & I'm gathering my gumption to try paper piecing in the near future with Carol Doak's book. Can hardly wait for them to get here!! It is my New Year's resolution! I hope to keep the Alzheimer's away & I think this has me off to a great start! :-) Thank you each & every one who contributes &/or maintains this forum!! Love you all! Happy holidays!
    Live Simply, Love Generously, Care Deeply,Speak Kindly, Leave the rest to GOD

  18. #18
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    Wow you've come a long way in a year!! I'm still trying to match corners!!

  19. #19
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    It's wonderful to hear how you've all learned how to do new things - or learned how to improve how you did old things.

  20. #20
    Super Member Dina's Avatar
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    I have been quilting a little over two years. I find I learn something on every quilt. I am getting fairly good at the corners on my binding, I have learned not to backstitch when I start SID but to start with very small stitches instead, and I have learned to use my ironing board for support when quilting. I have also learned I do not know how I survived without my portable design wall. I learned I can quilt for friends, though i prefer for them to select the fabric and pattern. I just finished my 32 quilt! I am a Serial Quilter, for sure.

  21. #21
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    This is a great thread! I have been quilting for about 10 years and have fun making up my own designs then figuring out how to cut them out! I have worked on several paper pieced quilts, but this year I have almost finished my first string quilt. From disliking to applique I have progressed this year to loving it. I joined a Guild and a Bee this fall (after telling myself I never would ) and joined this forum. I am so used to this new look that I can't remember what the forum was like before! I have learned from all of you so many new things, and am grateful. I have been contemplating Album Quilts and have decided I'm going to go for it. I really, really want to make one....so.....I'm working on getting my UFO finished. Then my New Years resolution is to start my AQ. It may not be a traditional one but will be my way, and I will love it.
    Everyone has been wonderfully helpful to me on here. Thank you, and Happy Holidays.
    Shirls

  22. #22
    Super Member Deborahlees's Avatar
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    I have been sewing since I was five years old.....quilting for perhaps the last forty years.....and I am always amazed at how each year I do things better than I did before. What was once acceptable and good enough is not any more because I know I can do better !!! I love learning new patterns, that has become my passion this year. My goal was to try a new pattern every month this past year, and for the most part I was very successful in the endeavor..... and I mean, find, start and finish. I do not believe in UFO's....they take up space

  23. #23
    Super Member Yarn or Fabric's Avatar
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    In the past year I have learned to love starch. I don't know why I never used it before but man that stuff rocks!
    I also now ruler fold my fabric so it is nice and neat, pretty and organized in my shelves.
    Those were my two new to me things this year. I also made friends with binding thanks to the binding miter tool. love love love that thing! I always get nice, crisp corners when I use it.

    I'm moving in to a new craft room next week. I hope to add some new positive habits in there - like putting things away after I use them. That would be nice!!

  24. #24
    Super Member Chele's Avatar
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    I think one of the best things about quilting is the learning process. We're always learning something.

  25. #25
    Senior Member Cagey's Avatar
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    Its been a year of recycling. I've purchased a used Babylock, got a ton of shelving and cabinets at rummage sales as well as a wheeled tote for my Babylock. (Rummage sales are now my main recreation during the season.) I enjoy going back and looking at the pictures of my first quilt compared to now. It's nice to know I'm improving at something I love to do.

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