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What I learned by keeping a diary making my last quilt

What I learned by keeping a diary making my last quilt

Old 04-24-2013, 03:19 AM
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Default What I learned by keeping a diary making my last quilt

I learned that I spent 32 hours and 2 minutes making the quilt between March 31 and April 22. This total includes the time I took to wind bobbins, clean machines, wash, iron and cut fabric. It took me 19 hours to just make the top. The quilting only took 4.5 hours because I only cross-hatch quilted it with a walking foot. I used two different machines, one for piecing and one for quilting and binding so I used 5 bobbins for piecing and binding and 3 bobbins for quilting. The quilt turned out to be 60" x 70" and that's about as big as I can make on my DSMs. I saved my diary for future reference. I'll never again wonder how long it will take me to make a quilt.
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Old 04-24-2013, 03:25 AM
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Thank you for doing that. Now I won't feel let down when I don't live up to the "Simple quilt. You can make this in an afternoon" exaggerations I hear all the time from not only quilt pattern makers, but video instructions on You Tube.
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Old 04-24-2013, 04:01 AM
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Thanks for the info. I think I will keep a diary of my next quilt. Sounds like it will be interesting to know how long I take to make one. I am pretty slow.
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Old 04-24-2013, 04:04 AM
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Thanks for the information.... I am working on a project now and I am tracking $$ and cuts.. you have inspired me to track the hours as well. I have missed some, but I can "guesstimate" the interfacing and cutting times. It will be interesting to see. (The $$ really add up and scare me sometimes)
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Old 04-24-2013, 04:06 AM
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And that's why we can't make money selling the quilts we make. If you were willing to work for $10 per hour, that would be $320 for labor alone. Now add fabric, batting and thread and no way we can compete with "bed in a Bag" from the local home fashion stores. About once a year I make a quilt on commission and that's only for someone who knows up front what it will cost and is willing to pay knowing the quality of work/art they will get in return.
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Old 04-24-2013, 04:12 AM
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this is very interesting information. thanks so much for sharing
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Old 04-24-2013, 04:12 AM
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Wow! I would be afraid to know exactly how much time I waste each day Of course my 5 cats and beagle do not consider hours of walking, petting and brushing wasted and I agree with them But the time I sit in quiet meditation watching flowers, tree and grass grow......
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Old 04-24-2013, 06:29 AM
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My friend tracked her costs for an heirloom and was amazed at how it was building up. Hundreds of . She never had a final amount because she started part wAy through. Just buying beads,lace, thread etc. .
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Old 04-24-2013, 11:59 AM
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Originally Posted by IrishgalfromNJ View Post
I learned that I spent 32 hours and 2 minutes making the quilt between March 31 and April 22. ......
This could be incredibly valuable information to have when/if it came time to price your quilt for sale. If you didn't even charge for materials for the quilt, would you be willing to work for less than minimum wage - about $7.25 as of 2009 - making your income from the quilt $232? I personally wouldn't do it for less than $12-15 per hour for labor, or $384-$480. And that doesn't include fabric, batting, thread, and other supplies!

You can see from this one example how too often we undervalue our work!

Jan in VA
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Old 04-24-2013, 12:17 PM
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Well I have done a cost and time tracking on a few of mine and I don't think I'll do that again it was scary.
I rarely do commission quilts for this reason. People don't want to pay the price. I have so many I want to make and give away, I really don't even want to do commission quilts. It's a waste of time even going over it with someone, Because they never will understand the quilting process. I wonder if a true time video would have them understanding it.
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