Getting to Know Annie
Do you know how it is when you meet someone new? And you have to be with them several times before you know whether or not you like them? That’s how it feels for Annie, my new-to-me Handi Quilter Avante longarm quilting machine and me. I love being able to load the quilt top and back and batting on the frame rather than wrestling the whole weight of the quilt as I quilt on my domestic machine. I love knowing what Annie is capable of doing. I can either guide her myself doing free-motion quilting or I can set up the computer and let the computer tell her where to go and what to stitch. Oh, the possibilities!!! I think this is going to be a good relationship.
April 10, 2018
Even though I want to work on quilting with rulers, I have a Halloween project and a Christmas project to do for work. (Yes, that’s how far ahead we work to make those pretty holiday issues happen.) Those projects have to be completed by the end of April.
I also have a granddaughter graduating from high school in May. I always make my grandchildren a queen-size quilt for their graduation present. And they get to have a little say in their quilt. This granddaughter chose turquoise and lavender as her colors. I have tons of fabric but I’ve made several blue/purple/green quilts lately so I didn’t have enough fabric to make her quilt in those colors.
I went shopping and found a great quilt store that is new to me. I cut the patches and strips for the graduation quilt.
April 11-13, 2018
Work has been busy and I seem to get home and just collapse. I have to get motivated.
April 14, 2018
It’s Saturday and the day I don’t have to get up at a set time and for whatever reason, I woke up a little after 3:30 a.m. and could not go back to sleep. So I got up at 4 a.m. and started sewing on the graduation quilt. I quit sewing at 9 a.m. I’m so pleased with the progress I made on this quilt. It’s going to be pretty.
April 15, 2018
I like having deadlines. They help me regain focus when I’m out there just wandering around aimlessly, bouncing from project to project. Today, because I needed to have something to tell you about quilting with rulers, I finished quilting the black and blue batik quilt that I started last week.
Some observations about this second project quilting with rulers …
First, I need to stay focused. When I’m doing ruler work is not the time to be daydreaming. For those beautiful precise lines, the foot needs to stay in contact with the ruler at all times. I’ll have to remove the extra stitches in my square and a number of other places on this little quilt top. There may be a better way to do it, but for now, when I miss, I just go back and stitch in the right place. I’ll take out the extra stitches after the quilt is bound.
Second, I need to be more systematic as I work my way across the quilt. On this project as well as the last one, I found places that I missed quilting. It’s not a big deal but it would be easier to get it all quilted on the first try.
April 16, 2018
Oh my, I started a new project and I can hardly stand to walk away from it. But I do need to eat, sleep and go to work.
Both my mom and my mother-in-law had lots of linens, like tablecloths, pillowcases and dresser scarves. I’ve recently seen lots of those type of things quilted beautifully.
I quilted this one a while back on my domestic machine and it is one of my favorite pieces. You can read more about it here.
This is my first attempt at quilting vintage linens on Annie or any longarm for that matter. I started with a piece that has no special meaning to me. I’ll save the ones that are more precious until I am better at longarming. I don’t know who made this little treasure or even which of my moms I got it from. It’s small; the background fabric is a fat quarter.
My original idea was to do matchstick quilting but as I worked I am not getting even spacing. I stopped so I could talk to my coworker Annette Falvo, who is much more experienced at ruler work than I am.
I keep looking at The Quilting Company website to find things about longarm quilting that might be helpful to you. Today, I found two courses.
The first is by Karlee Porter, who does wonderful graffiti-style quilting. Check it out.
The second is a longarm quilting certification sponsored by Fons & Porter. This is an in-depth 14-week class that’s just full of information. It even includes the basics of how to begin your own quilting business. Here is the link so you can get all the details.
And now, until next time,