• Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Everything posted by Marie0722

  1. Usually I am my own worst critic but I finished a quilt for a customer last week that I am really happy with. It is a king size Grandmother's Flower Garden, all hand pieced. Every flower is made up of seven different fabrics, and every fabric was only used once in the quilt. There are a few repeats in the green background but not in the flowers. She worked on it on and off for five years, and she must have collected every basic fabric out there for the last 20 years. It was so much fun quilting the flowers and looking at all the different fabrics, recognizing many of them. She asked me to "make the flowers look like flowers", and I think I did
  2. EQ 8

    Yes, you can upgrade from EQ6. EQ6 users don't pay the full price for the upgrade either but the discount is less than for EQ7 users.
  3. Looks like we don't have to worry about that anymore, Cagey... last night at the guild meeting the lady who sent her to me told me that she loves it so much that she has decided to keep it for herself for now and not give it to her daughter just yet.
  4. Lol, Cagey, I asked her about that... she said she started quilting in 1984, so has accumulated a lot of fabrics but her friends also raided their stashes, and she just needed one small piece for one hexagon each, so they all gave her some of all they fabrics they bought during those five years as well.
  5. EQ 8

    I have been using EQ for the past 18 years and I don't sew anything without it. I upgraded to the new version the day it came out, and I love it. Definitely worth the upgrade. I usually hate change for no reason, but they overhauled the whole worktable setup, and it is so much easier to use now. Lots of hidden new features, and what I love most is that it now shows you the measurements when you are in print mode and click on a block.
  6. Thank you, everyone, for all your nice words! It was a lot of fun quilting this one, and although it took a while, I was almost sorry when I was done. That has never happened before for sure Carol, that was a lucky accident. I was trying to figure out a way to do continuous leaves in the green background but couldn't come up with an idea that would work for turning the corners. Then I decided it would take long enough to do all the flowers individually and went with this. I was delighted when I realized it looked like an echo around the petals. Gail, yes, lots of starts and stops but I managed to do every flower in one continous line, and after finishing one row of flowers, all the green hexagons around them could be done without stopping, so it wasn't too bad. I was just worried that I'd miss a few hexagons, so I checked every single one before taking the quilt of the frame... and I had missed two. Boy, was I glad I took the time to do that. Cathy, yes, she already picked it up, and she loved it. She will give this to her daughter for Christmas. I really hope the daughter understands the amount of work that went into this quilt.
  7. Batting tape

    Thank you, Jim, that's good to know! Before I bought my Millie, that's how I managed to quilt big quilts on my domestic machine... cut the batting into thirds and spray baste and quilt one third at a time starting in the centre of the quilt. I never taped or stitched the batting pieces together. People thought I was crazy but I have never had problems either. With Millie I have always dutifully stitched the pieces together with the largest zig zag settings on my machine, I thought I had to because there is no basting. I will definitely try it your way now... yes, I am lazy
  8. Trimming Question

    Lora, I don't think there is right and wrong in this case, it's more a matter of personal preference. For my personal quilts I trim to the edge. But there are lots of people out there who want extra fullness in the binding, that's why I always ask when they bring me the quilt how they want this handled.
  9. Thank you, Lora, I will look into it. I have been thinking I could probably use Electric Quilt for auditioning designs but haven't had the time to figure it out. Quilter's Lightbox sounds much easier though!
  10. I was wondering how those of you that quilt for others handle this part. Do you discuss the details of how to quilt with the client? Or do you quilt what *you* think works best? Last year we had Kathleen Riggs at our guild for a trunk show, and she said she never discusses anything with a customer. If they want to decide how a quilt is going to be quilted, they need to find someone else to do it for them. Her reasoning was that they picked her because they liked her work, and it wouldn't be "her work" anymore if she quilted what she was told to do. I have always thought it's the customer's quilt, and they have to like it when it's done but I am beginning to reconsider. I am dealing with one of my guild members right now who came to me with a quilt that she felt needed "something special". I am not the only longarm quilter in our guild, she has four or five to choose from. But she chose me because she liked the things I bring for show and tell. And she didn't know what that "something special" would be. All she knew was how much she was willing to pay for it, and it was a reasonable price that she had in mind. I have been running ideas by her for three days now, and she settled on something that she saw online which is very simple and does not suit her quilt/fabric choices at all in my opinion. My suggestions are all "too much". And I am thinking if I had just finished her quilt my way, she would have loved the result. She probably just can't visualize how it would look. I will quilt what she wants, it's her quilt after all, but I know I am not going to be happy with it. That's why I am considering Kathleen's way and would love to hear how others handle it.
  11. Loyal customers. ???

    I have always believed (and still do) that quilting makes the quilt. And when I moved from Europe to Canada and started working at the local quilt shop, I was totally surprised when I found out that most people don't agree with that assessment, that in fact most quilters don't actually like to quilt at all. They just like making the tops. And the quilting is not important to them at all. I love to quilt, and that's why I eventually decided to buy a longarm machine and quilt for others. I would love to add a computer to do the pantos for me because I find them quite boring. But I know that no one would pay me for that, it would have to be a business investment for myself. I custom quilt all my own stuff, and that's what I show at the guild meetings, and that's what brings me customers because they are all in awe of my skills (which are far from perfect, especially compared to what you guys post here but if you can't quilt at all, you might look at things a little differently). But the majority of them stills wants pantographs because it's cheaper.
  12. Most of my customers want pantographs, and I always try to get them involved in design and thread choices because I want to get an idea what *they* like. Usually I make a few suggestions, and when I feel they are going somewhere that doesn't work at all or when I can see that they have no idea what to pick, then I gently steer them where I would go. That has always worked in the past. This particular quilt was just so frustrating because I found a design for the background that would have been perfect, and then she insisted on the other one. I hated doing it... it felt like the quilt was screaming *no*... and I don't like the result at all. Oh well, nothing I can do about it other than learn from the experience.
  13. Name of block....

    Maybe a variation of an Odd Fellows Chain? The centre is a little different but otherwise it looks like it.
  14. Thanks for your input, ladies! I came to the conclusion yesterday that it was my mistake. I personally can't imagine not knowing how you want your quilt quilted, and I always try to encourage people to get involved. That's what I did with free motion quilting for years. And then I finally realized it's not going to happen because most people just don't like the quilting part. That's essentially why I ended up buying a longarm. I have decided that while it's the customer's quilt and she has to like it, if I am not happy with it, it shouldn't be out there with my name on it. There is nothing I can do in this particular case, I have stated my professional opinion multiple times and given good reasons (in my opinion ) why the design does't work. But she wants it, and I will do it. But from now on I won't get them involved like this, and I will reserve the right to refuse when they insist on something that I don't think will work. In this case she was reluctant to give me the creative license to do what I want but she had no clue what she wanted either. I should have realized this and insisted. But I had never really talked to her before... it gets easier once you get to know them a little better. Vicki, I don't have a program but I usually draw on clear plastic to create an overlay and then take a picture. I am not going to waste more time on this one, I will get it done and out of the house and file it as a learning experience. Ines, thank you for saying this. When I look at all the pictures here and everybody is so talented, and then I look at my own stuff, and I see all these "flaws" (and yes, I know that I am the only one to see those ), I find it difficult to believe sometimes that people might choose me for my skills, especially since I haven't been doing this for very long compared to some of the others around here. As for Kathleen Riggs, she is definitely famous in her neck of the woods. She is in her 20s and from Alberta, Canada. Her mother is a fantastic quilter as well, and her father is a certified Judy Niemeyer instructor, so it must be in her genes.
  15. A customer who is not a quilter brought me this gorgeous quilt top and asked me to "complete it", meaning she would like a finished quilt back, with binding and everything. She received this as a gift, it was made by Suttles and Seawinds in Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia. They made other quilts similar to this one, and I have tried to come up with quilting ideas by looking at those pictures online but they are all of low resolution, so I can't figure out the details. They used upside down clamshell for waves in the water parts in one of them, and she really likes that idea, and so do I. But this involves rulers, and since she is not a quilter, I am not sure if she realizes how long this would take. She knows that a huge amount of work has gone into this quilt top and wants to finish it properly. I would like to give her some options, so she can figure out how much she wants to spend on it. I usually have lots of design ideas for quilting but this one is tricky... any input would be greatly appreciated!
  16. Thank you for your suggestions! I hate marking too and try to avoid it whenever possible. I like working with rulers but just stitching away in free motion is so much more fun!
  17. Thank you, Kathy! I like the McTavishing idea... funny, I was looking at McTavishing yesterday for another quilt, and it never occurred to me that it might be good for this one too. Yes, I was looking for ideas for the background, I should have made that clear, sorry. The quilt is not small, I haven't measured it yet but I was quite surprised when she unfolded it. She had sent me pictures before, and I thought it was much smaller. It will be a while before I get to this one, I have to calculate the requirements for the backing and binding and send her fabric shopping first. Oh, and quote her a price, of course... let's see how that goes
  18. Customer Service

    I personally think it's great that I can try and fix any problem myself with the help of APQS (althought I am happy to know that the next technician is less than three hours away and passes through my town on a regular basis). But I can certainly understand that not everyone can or wants to do this. There is no rule though (I think ) that you have to do it yourself. You could ask any family member, friend or neighbour who is a little tech savvy and not afraid to touch your machine to do it for you. The instructional videos are really good, and if there are questions, just call APQS, and they will walk you through. You could pay whoever is helping you for their time and effort and it would be a lot cheaper than having someone travel to your house who is six hours away.
  19. Please don't hate me for saying this... but I love math I think it's interesting and fun. And I always find it funny when quilters hate math because quilting involves a lot of it. I was lucky and had one teacher who could *really* explain things. There are many math teachers out there who know their math but can't teach at all, and I am convinced that many people who say they hate math would actually like it if they had ever had a good teacher and hadn't had to deal with frustration all the time.
  20. Pink Halloween Quilt

    Absolutely fantastic! Very creative, I love all the details, and I love pink but would never have thought of a pink Halloween quilt. Being a breast cancer survivor, this is extra special to me. And yes, I want a bat bra too!
  21. Kathy, where in BC are you? Is going to Kamloops an option for you? I took my beginner's class from Bill at Heather's Fabric Shelf. He spent the whole day with me and taught me tons of stuff. Both he and Heather are great people and always happy to help, and Bill is also a certified APQS technician. Maybe you could go there to spend a day and ask all the questions that you have?
  22. Trimming Question

    I ask everyone if they want me to trim or not. Most people are grateful because they don't like doing it themselves but there are quite a few who prefer doing it themselves or ask me to leave 1" on all sides. When a quilt has borders that are not pieced I try to use the border seam as a guide, and if that isn't completely straight, then I try to even it out as much as I can as I go along. Let's say the border has a finished size of 4". Then I try to trim 4 1/4" away from the seam but nobody will ever see if I cut off a little more or less in some places, if it is just a little sliver, and this way the edge will be straight. If a quilt has pieced borders then people are on their own... the piecing is rarely perfect, and I don't want to be responsible for cutting off triangle corners etc. In these cases I make sure that I stay 1/4" away from their piecing, and if the edges are not straight, then they have to decide if they prefer to have uneven edges or rather cut off a triangle tip here and there with the binding to make it straight. Does this make sense? I hope you can figure out what I am trying to say.
  23. I made this butterfly quilt as a donation for a local retirement home, and we presented it to their activity coordinator yesterday. When someone at the home passes away, their bed will be draped with this quilt for a dignified exit under a field of butterflies. I found that a very touching idea, and when they contacted the local quilt guild in their search for a butterfly quilt, I decided to make one for them. I am quite happy with the way it turned out.
  24. Which direction

    I was taught to go from right to left, so that's what I mostly do. But sometimes I draw my own border designs in EQ7 and print them out, and now that you asked and I started thinking about it, I realized that with those I go whichever way feels better to me. I haven't had any issues with thread breaks so far going in the opposite direction.
  25. Rainbow Butterflies

    Connie, we were wondering the same... there is a tentative idea out there to make this a guild project for next year and supply other local facilities with quilts for this purpose, if they want one. I had a few guild members offer their help for this quilt but I wanted to get it done before the end of the guild year, and there just wasn't enough time to organize a group effort. But hopefully in September!