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Showing content with the highest reputation since 09/27/2019 in Posts

  1. 5 points


    With all batting, the scrim goes next to the backer---so it faces down. With that said, most scrimmed cotton batting has the scrim buried within the layers. The fibers are needle-punched into the scrim (a sheet of very strong and very thin polyester) and the key to placement is the direction of that needle punching. Your machine needle should go through in the same direction as the needle punching. So look at the batting---one side is smoother and has tiny visible holes (dimples). The other side will be rougher-looking and a bit raggedy (pimples). So the rule is "show your dimples---up---and hide your pimples---down". Another way to tell is most batting is folded with the "good" side out, just like fabric. That good side goes up and the uglier side down---look for the center crease/fold line. Make it a mountain instead of a valley when it's loaded. Poly batting may have a chemical scrim---an application of a chemical that bonds the poly fibers on only one side. That side feels much rougher and it will be placed next to the backer. Hope this is helpful.
  2. 5 points

    How is your quilting business?

    The number of quilters with longarms and mid-arms has risen like crazy in the past four years in my area. If you can spend the five to seven years left to sharpening your skills while taking a few customers here and there, go for it. It hasn't impacted my business, but I do primarily custom and have little competition. My quilts come from those who save the big ones and the special ones for me---I do 4 per month and sometimes struggle to get them done. Mine is a different situation so if you are able to analyse the competition, see if you can figure out a niche market. Are there lots of overall/e2e quilters so you'll be competing with them? Are there Modern quilters looking for a kindred-spirit longarmer? Is the custom market fully covered? Also, would you be happy to purchase a used machine to start out and upgrade to a new w/computer later? Please remember as well, the longarmer who advised you only has her best interests at heart---not yours. Though her advice may be spot-on, don't be deterred until you do some more research.
  3. 3 points

    Baby Quilt

    Baby quilt I made for a friend. Nursery is done in these colours and theme is sheep
  4. 3 points

    Labyrinth Walk for friend

    This is one I just finished for a friend. She pieced the quilt and I quilted it. I thought it turned out really well. I used Quilter's Dream Batting, and light gray thread on top with white on bottom.
  5. 3 points

    Batting storage

    Have you tried searching this forum? There have been many storage ideas throughout the years. Here's my favorite, easy to move and fairly cheap to make:
  6. 3 points

    Ruler work

    I still find it amusing that folks think stitch in the ditch is an easy and cheap way to get their quilt quilted.
  7. 3 points

    Ruler work

    Custom work using rulers - this is a highly specialized skill that take months, if not years to perfect. If it were me, I would charge by the hour, not by square inch. Don't underestimate your time and skills. I rarely do ruler quilting for customers because it's so expensive. I find other ways to quilt, or I choose to use minimal amount of rulers and then freehand the rest (combination) Find the going rate for custom heirloom quilting in your area, or ask other quilters in your area what they charge for ruler work. If I were doing ruler work, I would charge at least $35 per hour. For estimates, you could guess that it takes 40 hours and give them a quote. I'm not giving my time away for minimum wage. No way! I've had many customers ask me to SID their quilt. I kindly explain the costs and time involved and I offer other solutions for them.
  8. 3 points

    Pink Halloween Quilt

    Look what I got to quilt! It's a pink themed Halloween quilt, to display at our local hospital during the month of October. Pink because it's breast cancer awareness month. The Jackson Hole Quilt Guild rotates a quilt display every month at our local hospital. The nurses and patients really appreciate it. We've had a hard time in years past trying to find a pink quilt for the October display. So we had the bright idea to make a quilt just for that. Different people made the applique blocks, others sewed them together with sashing and border. I quilted it, and just handed it off to another member to attach the binding. A terrific collaboration. Last May I took a few classes from Judi Madsen in Salt Lake City. I just LOVE her work. So, you will see that she inspired this quilting. The bat bra block is the one that really got me started with the quilt designs. The lady who made it drew a spider in a web on the cleavage, so clever and so easy to quilt that design! Judi had just posted an applique quilt that she'd finished that had bugs in it. She gave the bugs motion by quilting a swirly design under them. I thought the ghosts need that swirly design too. Remember, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, right?! I used a wool batting, glide thread with magna glide bobbins. Love those magna glide bobbins! Angela Huffman is a great source for them and her delivery is super fast. Thanks for looking!
  9. 3 points
    IMHO, when they changed the forums, several years back, it got MUCH harder to post photos and follow threads - we lost a lot of followers at that point. I know there are those who will NEVER be on Facebook, but FB doesn't have the restrictions that this forum has - and those of us trying to help customers on the various APQS pages get instant notifications when someone needs help, instead of needing to check in here several times a day (although I try to do that anyway!). I love Facebook for the ability to follow my family, both close and extended, and the ability to help my customers quickly, easily, with links to files and photos. If you don't do Facebook, then it's up to you - and the rest of you that don't do FB - to make this the forum that you want!
  10. 2 points

    Minkie/Fireside back problems

    I use glide thread top and bottom not problems. Do you ask your customers where they bought the minkie? There are some really terrible copycats out there. I have problems with the cheap brands. I prefer "cuddle" over minkie, it comes out perfect every time.
  11. 2 points

    Needle hitting

    Hi - Thought I would update - I spoke with the Amazing Amy and it might be I can just do a belt adjustment ! She sent me videos, and once I find Allen wrenches and do a little Yoga to slow my heartbeat down, I'll be doing this chiropractic adjustment on my machine …
  12. 2 points

    Take up roller brake

    You have several things to look at---it doesn't have anything to do with the brake. First, make sure the backers you load are perfectly on-grain. This can be done with tearing the fabric instead of rotary cutting. If it's always on one side, your rollers may not be perfectly parallel or level. Just a small bit high on the right side will cause that side to roll tighter, which magnifies with every advance. Use a long level to check for horizontal level. Then adjust the bolts that attach the roller to the frame until the roller is level. Unfurl your leaders when you check for level so you are on bare metal and not the canvas. The front roller can also be off as far as distance between the take-up rollers. If the right side is farther out, it will roll tight on the right side. The solution is looking at the bolts that fasten it to the frame. You need to count the bolt-threads on each bolt, left and right. If the numbers are off---make them match. You can also count the bolt-threads on the back roller attachments if you don't have a long level. Finally, your leaders may be un-square/off. There are lots of tutorials that show how to fix warped or saggy leaders. Usually having (or making) a straight edge, then pinning the leaders together works well. Pin them, spritz them with plain water, tighten them, and let them dry. Hoping this is helpful!
  13. 2 points

    3 at once

    I mounted 3 baby quilts at once. I used the same length of backing fabric for all 3 but used different battings. Used my faithful 2002 Millenium.
  14. 2 points

    COVID 19 and Quilt Intake

    I have my customers put the parts in a seal-able bag (like a big Zip-loc) and drop it in front of my garage. I put out a wire bin on a small table that is under cover. We may talk at a distance. They put any instructions in the bag. I wear protective gloves, wipe the bag thoroughly with a disinfectant, then it goes into an un-used, un-heated shop for three days (or longer). I phone to discuss choices of thread and quilting. After quilting, she picks up in the same way and she uses whatever method she's comfortable with to assure it's safe. I'm in Washington State where people are advised to disinfect anything that comes into your living spaces. And I have a hubby with some lung problems so I'm not taking any chances. So far no one has balked and everyone is dropping off. I do four quilts a month so it isn't a parade of customers. One thing that stuck with me was a statement that "if you overreact, you'll never know if it was the right decision. If you under-react, you will know immediately". Stay well and safe. And if you decide it's necessary to stop all contact, provisions are in place to provide benefits to self-employed workers.
  15. 2 points
    Update,..... I did point out mistake to customer and we both decided it needed to be fixed. so,... spent an afternoon picking out stitches, and 10 minutes to restitch the Feather,... I was happy to do it as it was my mistake,.... I always point out mistakes if any,.. big or small and let the customer decide,.... this one I knew she would want fixed,.... She is very pleased with the end result!!! and so am I!!! Thanks for looking ,.... Happy Quilting,... Laura Love the combination of the two,... Simple,.. with a pop!!! I used a double Cotton Batting on this one,.. wanted the feathers to stand up and take center stage,... Matching Glide Threads in the Grey, Burgundy and White Areas,... Thanks for looking,... ** can you see the mistake? Found it after I pulled it off the frame,.... :0)
  16. 2 points

    roller brake

    Yep as Sharon says. You need to release it to advance or roll the quilt. I did some adjusting of mine at first without loosening the brake....yikes....what a mess.....the Velcro did move out of place leaving a goopy mess.....I cleaned it with rubbing alcohol I believe...it took a while....then ended up applying a new valcro strip.....good news though....I haven't had to replace it for several years.....I have had to take my Allen wrench and tighten the handle a few times though.....I bought one of those multi sized allen wrenchs that had the same size in it.....I like it better because you have a bigger handle to use when tightening.....
  17. 2 points
    Sharon Deming

    roller brake

    The purpose of the brake is to keep the roller from moving, so be sure to release the brake before you advance or "rewind" your quilt. You should have received an angled "Allen" wrench with your APQS machine. You may find that over time, the brake handle doesn't hold the rollers as firmly as it once did. The angled wrench is used to set the handle in a position that will enable it to hold firmly. If you purchased a used machine, you may or may not have the instructions for this, but you can find info with a quick forum or google search. And you are correct, there are NO stupid questions. We ALL had to learn about the brake! Be blessed as you fall in love with longarm quilting!
  18. 2 points

    Getting started on Millie 2005

    Ditto on missing the old gang!
  19. 2 points

    Ruler work

    I agree, people DO think that is easy. I got a last minute quilt last year, for a parent's 50th wedding anniversary. All blocks with photos or drawings. She wanted a "quick" "simple" stitch in the ditch. She was shocked when I explained that this was a custom job and how difficult so called simple stitching is. Super king size and she'd budgeted only $100. LOL Wanted me to bind it too. When I gave her the cost, she almost fainted. Finally took it on after she talked to the rest of the family and they helped with the cost, but she decided to bind it herself too. She still had to pay over $600. I got that one done and out! in three days. All ruler and hand guided.
  20. 2 points
    Barb--serendipity! I have this issue in hand and will happily send it to you without charge. I cleaned my sewing room a month ago and found all my back issues to put aside and loan to members of my longarm group. Look for an email from me.
  21. 2 points

    APQS Service is Awesome!

    I haven't been on this forum for quite a bit but I wanted to give a huge shout out for APQS Service. My Millie is a 2005. I mainly quilt for myself. After finishing a charity quilt and loading my own, my stitch regulator decided to choke. I had movement from top to bottom but not left to right or right to left. I called service and also posted a message. Angie did a wonderful job of helping me to isolate the problem. In my case, my carriage encoder went bad. It took a number of emails back and forth with me including pictures and whether the test worked or not. Angie was patience and even put up with my twisted sense of humor through out. Angie mailed me a new encoder for my carriage and with the excellent instructions, I took off the old one and attached the new encoder. Instant resolution! It took a bit to get to the bottom of the problem but it was finally isolated and fixed. My Millie and I are happy to report that I am once again stitching. If you ever need service, just know that you will be in good hands. Gail S. aka Quiltfaerie
  22. 2 points
    Borderline Quilter

    Toot Toot!

    Can I share my news? Had a call this evening to tell me that I won 1st for Longarming at Quilts UK, Malvern on my Customer Mary's quilt...WooHoo! It was a stunning top even before quilting! Marys Feathered Star Applique 2 by Borderline Quilter, on Flickr Marys Feathered Star applique 1 by Borderline Quilter, on Flickr
  23. 2 points

    Same size Backing and Top

    Even if you sew scraps of fabric to all four sides, if the quilt top is the same size as the back, it's absolutely impossible to avoid quilting the extra strip's seam line into the quilt while quilting it. Trust me in my 15 years of longarm quilting, it is nearly impossible to accomplish this very difficult and extremely stressful situation. I would contact customer and ask her to provide you with larger backing fabric that is at a minimum 8" wider and 8" longer than the quilt top. My job is to quilt the customer's quilt without pulling my hair out... it's not my job to perform miracles due to the failure of the customer to provide ample backing fabric. IMHO.
  24. 2 points

    Mariners compass

    Here's the last quilt of the year off the frame. It had lots of fullness issues so I had to heavily quilt it. I also got to use my quiltazoid to make the stars. I also meant to put a star in the middle but I forgot. There's so much fabric under there though that its probably best that I didn't try. Jess Mariners compass by butterflyjess03, on Flickr image by butterflyjess03, on Flickr image by butterflyjess03, on Flickr image by butterflyjess03, on Flickr
  25. 1 point

    cervical surgery.

    I will have pre-op on Dec. 20, Hubby turns 81 on the 23 rd, and I will have surgery on the 28th. More to tell but I keep losing the print. I Thank All of you for your prayers and good Thought, Please pray for me and all involved with the Surgery. God bless you all, have wonderful holidays and stay safe and healthy.
  26. 1 point
    Jim, You explanation on the tension magnification makes perfect sense. Thank you for sharing. Cagey
  27. 1 point

    18-8 Gammill Vision

    12 foot table with attached light bar. Butler computer system included that was new in 2016. Machine itself was purchased in 2015. Has been serviced and has less than a million stitches. Price is $8000. Transportation and freight on buyer. Machine lives in Tucson. There are too many extras to mention.
  28. 1 point
    Shirley Harwood

    For Sale:

    2014 Lenni with Bliss table. Asking 4,000.00. Located SW Wisconsin.
  29. 1 point

    UPS for Lenni

    The main power fuse on a Lenni is 3.15 amps which is the equivalent of about 400 watts. You want a unit with zero delay and that is what dual conversion will give you. Not to say you can’t get zero delay without dual conversion. I’m not sure if the Lenni will tolerate a delay switching to a backup but I know the Millennium won’t. If you are quilting along and the power goes out there is an excellent chance the needle is in the fabric, you will tear the quilt. In my opinion buy the smallest dual conversion back up, you just need it to keep the machine running until you can stop moving. Just my two cents Nigel
  30. 1 point
    This is how I solved my problem with my machine/ ruler base running into my side clamps. Just take a look at the pictures. Its very simple using a dowel stick. Good luck.
  31. 1 point

    UPS for Lenni

    From 2017, posted as multiple pictures.
  32. 1 point

    Another Customer Embroidery Bunnies

    I find myself doing quite a few embroidery quilts lately for some reason. This cute little bunny quilt is the 2nd one I've done. I tried to keep it simple, but she wanted it to be used decorately instead of for her grandbaby to actually use it so I could quilt is tighter than I normally would a quilt that will be used by the youngster. Quarter inch echoing in the blocks, SID around the blocks, something featherish in the outside border and a simple sashing treatment. You know, cute quilts are just fun to quilt! Thanks for looking.
  33. 1 point

    Baby Quilt

    Gorgeous quilting, and piecing. It is an outstanding job. Cagey
  34. 1 point

    Attaching binding by longarm

    We never used the channel locks when applying binding, we used the edge of the hopping foot as a guide. Also if someone was going to show or have the quilt judged we wouldn’t apply the binding. Nigel
  35. 1 point

    Glide thread vs Superior

    Linda, It is great to see new members using the forum. I hope to see some of your quilting in the future. Here is a link and the information to Superior Thread, where they address the issue of thread life, both cotton and polyester. While the polyester thread color may fade, it appears that it will not deteriorate as cotton does over the years. Their input may surprise you. https://www.superiorthreads.com/education/what-is-the-shelf-life-of-thread Have a wonderful day. I guess as we stay indoors we have more time to piece and quilt. Cagey How many years does thread last? Q. I have inherited a rather significant thread stash from a friend. It's a grand selection with a wide range of cotton threads and some are even wound onto the old wooden spools that make me think of my grandmother's sewing area. I'm worried about using old thread and having trouble with it as it runs through my machine. How can I tell if the thread is still OK to use? Is there a shelf life or a recommended period of use for thread? A. A good quality thread that is produced today will last much longer than thread which was produced 15 or 20 years ago. Even the best quality cotton thread of a generation ago did not have the advanced processing techniques available to us today and it would probably be best to not sew or quilt with old thread that exists today. However, a high-quality cotton thread that is manufactured today, like MasterPiece and King Tut, will probably be fine to use in 40 or 50 years from now. Why will threads that are manufactured today last longer than threads manufactured 20 years ago? The difference is due to the advancements in spinning, dyeing, and twisting technology and the evolution of genetic engineering better cotton plants. Because cotton is a natural fiber, it will degrade over time. A good test to check whether or not the cotton threads you have been given are OK to use in your machine is to hold about a one foot section between both hands and pull apart. If the thread snaps (you should feel a nice, crisp break), then it is OK to use. If the thread just separates and pulls apart easily (think of pulling a cotton ball apart), we don't recommend using it. As for polyester thread, the color may fade over the years with exposure to sunlight, but there is no evidence that the thread deteriorates like cotton threads, so it's safe to say that synthetic fibers will last longer.
  36. 1 point

    Piecing with dress shirts

    Personally I would leave the starch in the shirts. I starch all my quilting fabric. When piecing the fabric holds its shape better, less shrinkage, etc. As far as becoming a wrinkled mess when the quilt is washed, it depends on many factors? What was the shirts made out of, cotton, polyester, silk, etc? What type of batting are you planning on using? Are you quilting it dense or light, this will probably be the main factor in how much it wrinkles. If the batting is made out of the same type of fabrics, you should be able to wash the quilt like you would the shirts. It's a quilt so after washing it should have texture. I doubt you want it to look like a heavily starched shirt. You would want it to be cuddly? Just my thoughts.
  37. 1 point

    A Lion-size Dream

    Posting here for those not part of the facebook group. Not a really great picture - but it's finally done and gifted to my son for his move-in at school next month.Applique center pattern "Majesty" by Gina Reddin Designs, borders are created with 'curved braid' by Victoria Findlay Wolfe. Quilted on my Lenni with SoFine and Aurifil threads, Quilters Dream Wool Batting. All hand-guided - freehand faux McTavishing and some rulers. I've been pantograph quilting for almost 5 years and only started FMQ this year.This project stretched me in a LOT of ways - especially as it was for my youngest child as he leaves (1,000+miles) for college!
  38. 1 point
    I have been quilting for about 10 years & have gotten into free motion quilting in a big way. I love the quilt part & some ladies have been asking me to quilt for them. I have no idea what to charge. I use a Sweet Sixteen to quilt on. This is the most recent quilt that I completed. I would appreciate some guidance. Thank you Lydia.F.
  39. 1 point

    ruler foot?

  40. 1 point

    Daughter bag

    very nice bag.
  41. 1 point

    Features I wish APQS had

    I have had my Millie a little over a year. There are certain features that I wish it had: 1. A basting stitch - instead of me having to manually control basting stitch length 2. A tie off stitch 3. Independently movable front handles : so that I could move one handle out of the way when doing ruler work 4. I wish the front backing bar was situated vertically below the top bar. Since I am only 5' 4" this would help me be 4-6 inches closer so that it was easier to do ruler work in more of the stitching field. I have to have my machine on casters since my space is limited. this adds to the height of the machine and the location of the backing bar puts me just that too far away. Any features you wish your APQS had?
  42. 1 point


    Struggled getting photos to load
  43. 1 point


    The Bedford Historical Society asked our guild to make them a raffle quilt for 2017. I've always wanted to make this quilt since I saw it in McCalls Quilting Magazine a number of years ago. I used Hobbs 80/20 batting, So Fine on top and Bottom Line in the bobbin. I added an extra row to the top and side of the pattern so it would be queen size. It won 2 First Place Awards, a Second Place and best longarm machine quilting in 3 different area quilt shows. Only one judge said she saw shadowing. I did try to press seams open, but it was easier to sew nine patches ironing to one side. How do you try to prevent shadowing? Honor Abides Here (2) by Libby G, on Flickr Cumberland MD quilt show 097 by Libby G, on Flickr Honor Abides Here (5) by Libby G, on Flickr Honor Abides Here (3) by Libby G, on Flickr
  44. 1 point

    Fancy Forest Quilt

    Finished my Fancy Forest Quilt (design by Elizabeth Hartman) this morning. One problem I have is my grandchildren all want one What have I started?? It was so much fun to make!
  45. 1 point

    Batting poking through on back

    This is from the Hobbs Batting webpage, it may help fix some issues. Cagey What are “pokies”?This term usually refers to small bits of batting fibers appearing on the back of the quilt during the quilting process. This is most common with cotton or cotton blend battings and the bits on the back will wash away during laundering. Occasionally seen during the long arm quilting process, it is most often a result of an oversized needle or a needle that has a slight burr that is not visible to the eye. Changing the machine needle will usually correct the issue. Thread choice can also be a factor. Cotton is a dry fiber and occasionally cotton threads will pull at the cotton batting fibers during the quilting process. Changing to a polyester thread can alleviate the problem. Using high quality thread is very important to successful machine quilting. Lower quality threads generate a great deal of lint and break easily at the high speeds used in machine stitching.
  46. 1 point

    Mariners compass

    Hi - I'm not sure if this thread is active, but is there a pattern I can purchase for this quilt? It is so beautiful. Thank you.
  47. 1 point

    MN Business Help

    Hello! I'm wondering if there are any Minnesota longarm business owners here? I'm ready to start a quilting business and am looking for some guidance on what I have to do to get started as far as business license, taxes etc. in our state. I feel ready to start on a limited basis - just have to come up with a business name. How did you decide? Any advice for a beginner would be greatly appreciated.
  48. 1 point

    Lesson Learnt

    Legally, you can send a registered letter to the customer stating that unless payment is made within xx amount of time (60 days where I live but I think 90 days elsewhere) the quilt becomes your property to sell to recoup the quilting fees. You'll be surprised how quickly they can find the cash! If they still can't pay, you have to hope that the quilt will sell. Or donate it to whatever charity you like. Get a valuation from the charity for tax purposes. I wouldn't be a bit concerned about losing a customer--she lost you as a quilter through her own actions.
  49. 1 point

    prices for piecing a quilt????

    Judy, I agree with you..I got into this business because I like doing what I am doing...to make $ for what I like to do is the cherry on top! I would never want to be taken advantage of by someone just because I couldn't do it myself. To over price ones time or skill is just plain greed. Unless the quilt is 100 years old and in mint condition, or an award blue ribbon quilt, quilted completerly in heirloom fashion or using 14K gold thread I could never bring myself to pay or charge more than $1,000 for any quilt. Sorry if this offends anyone but it's my opinion and I feel that there are alot of people out there (in all areas of labor not just quilting) that over charge just because ego or greed. What every happened to an honest days work for an honest days wage? Is it not greed that got us in this world ecconomic mess we are all in now? Over pricing/ inflating prices just for the pure greed of making more $$ and all the while the quality of the product was less and less. Think about it, how would you feel if you were on the other side being the one asked to pay the price for the individuals greed. Sorry for the soapbox...it's a sore subject with me these days with the state of the ecconomy.
  50. 1 point

    Can't get chalk out

    Have you heard of Fels Naptha soap? I have found it will remove stains nothing else will. I have had a bar of it for 15 years and it has saved me on several occasions. I don\'t even know if you can find it any more, but I got mine at Sav-On drug store. I would look in a place like that. Apparently the soap has been around at least 100 years. Karen Spiderlegs Quilting Liberty