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ffq-lar

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  1. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from Quilta93 in monofilament uses   
    Whoever has "frowned upon" invisible thread hasn't tried it or hasn't found the perfect use for it. I just used Essence monofil by Filtec on an entire double quilt. The customers budget wouldn't support thread color changes needed for separate quilting of white and very colorful fabric in the piecing--- she suggested invisible thread and it worked great for a medium overall.
    You wouldn't opt for this type of thread for micro-stitching because of the bit of shine you can get. But most other applications are fine. You can ditch and outline with it--really its best use. You can do CCs, line work--anything. All that shows is needle holes and texture. The thread I mentioned above is the absolute thinnest mono I've used. Smaller than a hair and forgiving with a tiny bit of tension tweaking. Loosen the top and the bobbin tension and test it out. Minimal breakage. And the Filtec is super inexpensive. I've used Monolon (Superior) and Monofil (Madeira). The Essence is my favorite
  2. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from Mattie-Sue in Dreamin   
    I'd say buy a machine first and then take lessons. You can't apply what you learn in classes if you don't have something to practice on. You can always look at videos and tutorials in the meantime to get your brain ready.  Good luck!
  3. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from CrazyAboutQuilting in Quilter Died, what do I do?   
    I will be the less-generous voice of reason here. You have a business. A customer had passed away leaving you with a job with perhaps some emotional attachments aside from your business relationship. If this person was a good friend, you can use your good judgement as to whether you want to either give the top back, offer the family a reduced cost or quilt it for no charge.  Looking at it logically, any other business left with a job for someone who passes away would contact the family after a decent period of time and give them the options the business and the family are comfortable with. I can't think of any business that would finish a job at no cost unless there is another emotional attachment between the parties. Quilters are generous to a fault sometimes. I've finished quilts for some of my dear customers who have passed away at no charge. I've also given back tops to the family when no one was interested in getting them finished.   It's your business, your connection to this customer, and your final decision to make. If you're concerned about reminding the family you have the quilt top, send a condolence note outlining your connection with the customer and letting them know you still have her quilt top. Then ask them to contact you at their convenience, where you'll have options for them to choose from. If you decide to quilt it without charge, don't contact them, finish it, wrap it as a gift, and deliver with a nice note explaining your connection. They'll be so thankful, but I'm sure would never have an expectation of that happening. It's your call and you shouldn't be afraid to follow your own judgement.
     
    I want to add though, that if you opt to quilt it without charge, you will not be able to deduct the value of your time as a charitable deduction from your taxes---only the value of materials. Plus I'm not sure if it can be considered a "donation" if it's not for a recognized charitable group or institution.  Since you may volunteer to finish the quilt without compensation, it can't be considered a business loss. Consult your tax prep person for the IRS rules.
  4. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from Enchanted Quilting in Need advice on loading my backs   
    Yes, I use that technique. If the edge is distorted from ripping I will steam it with an iron. You can rip off the selvedge but usually I leave the selvedge and pin above it onto the plain weave of the fabric so it isn't too tight along the edge. 
  5. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from Oma in Quilter Died, what do I do?   
    I will be the less-generous voice of reason here. You have a business. A customer had passed away leaving you with a job with perhaps some emotional attachments aside from your business relationship. If this person was a good friend, you can use your good judgement as to whether you want to either give the top back, offer the family a reduced cost or quilt it for no charge.  Looking at it logically, any other business left with a job for someone who passes away would contact the family after a decent period of time and give them the options the business and the family are comfortable with. I can't think of any business that would finish a job at no cost unless there is another emotional attachment between the parties. Quilters are generous to a fault sometimes. I've finished quilts for some of my dear customers who have passed away at no charge. I've also given back tops to the family when no one was interested in getting them finished.   It's your business, your connection to this customer, and your final decision to make. If you're concerned about reminding the family you have the quilt top, send a condolence note outlining your connection with the customer and letting them know you still have her quilt top. Then ask them to contact you at their convenience, where you'll have options for them to choose from. If you decide to quilt it without charge, don't contact them, finish it, wrap it as a gift, and deliver with a nice note explaining your connection. They'll be so thankful, but I'm sure would never have an expectation of that happening. It's your call and you shouldn't be afraid to follow your own judgement.
     
    I want to add though, that if you opt to quilt it without charge, you will not be able to deduct the value of your time as a charitable deduction from your taxes---only the value of materials. Plus I'm not sure if it can be considered a "donation" if it's not for a recognized charitable group or institution.  Since you may volunteer to finish the quilt without compensation, it can't be considered a business loss. Consult your tax prep person for the IRS rules.
  6. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from Gail O in Quilter Died, what do I do?   
    I will be the less-generous voice of reason here. You have a business. A customer had passed away leaving you with a job with perhaps some emotional attachments aside from your business relationship. If this person was a good friend, you can use your good judgement as to whether you want to either give the top back, offer the family a reduced cost or quilt it for no charge.  Looking at it logically, any other business left with a job for someone who passes away would contact the family after a decent period of time and give them the options the business and the family are comfortable with. I can't think of any business that would finish a job at no cost unless there is another emotional attachment between the parties. Quilters are generous to a fault sometimes. I've finished quilts for some of my dear customers who have passed away at no charge. I've also given back tops to the family when no one was interested in getting them finished.   It's your business, your connection to this customer, and your final decision to make. If you're concerned about reminding the family you have the quilt top, send a condolence note outlining your connection with the customer and letting them know you still have her quilt top. Then ask them to contact you at their convenience, where you'll have options for them to choose from. If you decide to quilt it without charge, don't contact them, finish it, wrap it as a gift, and deliver with a nice note explaining your connection. They'll be so thankful, but I'm sure would never have an expectation of that happening. It's your call and you shouldn't be afraid to follow your own judgement.
     
    I want to add though, that if you opt to quilt it without charge, you will not be able to deduct the value of your time as a charitable deduction from your taxes---only the value of materials. Plus I'm not sure if it can be considered a "donation" if it's not for a recognized charitable group or institution.  Since you may volunteer to finish the quilt without compensation, it can't be considered a business loss. Consult your tax prep person for the IRS rules.
  7. Upvote
    ffq-lar reacted to Zora in Quilter Died, what do I do?   
    You cannot write off your time/labor as a charitable donation, and you cannot write off donations to a person/individual. You should consider this a good will gesture. If the quilter was not a repeat customer I would wait awhile then contact the family to see if they want it quilted, if they want the level of quiting selected by the lady who pieced it, and who will be responsible for the bill. If they don't want you to proceed, return the top.
    If you had a special relationship with this customer..quilt it, ask if someone in the family knows how to bind it, or if they have a friend who can do that. A quilt with no binding isn't much better than an unquilted top. Somebody in the family is going to have to go through her stuff to find the binding. I would then bind it and give it to them with my condolences on their loss. The one time I did this..the family couldn't have cared less and never even sent a note of thanks. Since I don't believe in an afterlife in which the piecer would herself appreciate this.. the only thing I got was the knowledge that I had done the right thing and the hope that somebody would do the right thing for my family someday.
  8. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from dbams in Need advice on loading my backs   
    The way I load works well for me and I've shared here many times.
    I make sure the edge I load on the front roller is straight-of-grain, either by having a selvedge edge or a torn edge. No guessing, it must be straight. I pin that straight edge to the front roller and then bring the fabric under the leveler roller and over the back take-up roller. I go to the back and pull all the backer fabric tight and even, making a "table" of the backer fabric and keeping it taut, eyeballing so the sides are lined up front and back. I pool all the excess backer on the table or the floor. I go to the front and use the power advance to slowly roll the backer onto the front roller. Notice nothing is pinned except to the front. The canvas of the leader has enough "bite" to keep the fabric in line and flat. I watch to make sure the fabric coming across the back roller is straight and flat. If I get some lumps or ruffles on top of the back roller (which means it's not rolling straight) I stop, go to the back, and smooth and pull the backer tight across the top of the roller. Then back to the front for more loading. I roll, stop, smooth, roll, smooth, until the backer fabric clears the top of the table in back. You can see if the backer is square by whether the far edge is even across the length of the table top. If one side is lower, I place pins all along that are in a straight line with the table top and use those as a guide for where to pin to the back leader. I also use a piece of tape or a blue marker to mark the side edges of the leader so I can line up the sides correctly for the final pinning. Then I pin the straight edge to the leader, making sure to use the pinned line and the side marks as guides. After it's all pinned, I go to the front and roll the slack part of the backer onto the back roller and then all of it onto the front roller. This is usually enough to be ready for the next steps, but you can roll back and forth a few times to make sure all is level.
    This method will also allow you to load a skewed backer without trimming it. As long as you have one perfectly straight edge, the rest will load on-grain and you can tell if the backer scrolls in and out because of bad cutting if it's a wide back. Hoping this was helpful.
  9. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from Beachside Quilter in Need advice on loading my backs   
    The way I load works well for me and I've shared here many times.
    I make sure the edge I load on the front roller is straight-of-grain, either by having a selvedge edge or a torn edge. No guessing, it must be straight. I pin that straight edge to the front roller and then bring the fabric under the leveler roller and over the back take-up roller. I go to the back and pull all the backer fabric tight and even, making a "table" of the backer fabric and keeping it taut, eyeballing so the sides are lined up front and back. I pool all the excess backer on the table or the floor. I go to the front and use the power advance to slowly roll the backer onto the front roller. Notice nothing is pinned except to the front. The canvas of the leader has enough "bite" to keep the fabric in line and flat. I watch to make sure the fabric coming across the back roller is straight and flat. If I get some lumps or ruffles on top of the back roller (which means it's not rolling straight) I stop, go to the back, and smooth and pull the backer tight across the top of the roller. Then back to the front for more loading. I roll, stop, smooth, roll, smooth, until the backer fabric clears the top of the table in back. You can see if the backer is square by whether the far edge is even across the length of the table top. If one side is lower, I place pins all along that are in a straight line with the table top and use those as a guide for where to pin to the back leader. I also use a piece of tape or a blue marker to mark the side edges of the leader so I can line up the sides correctly for the final pinning. Then I pin the straight edge to the leader, making sure to use the pinned line and the side marks as guides. After it's all pinned, I go to the front and roll the slack part of the backer onto the back roller and then all of it onto the front roller. This is usually enough to be ready for the next steps, but you can roll back and forth a few times to make sure all is level.
    This method will also allow you to load a skewed backer without trimming it. As long as you have one perfectly straight edge, the rest will load on-grain and you can tell if the backer scrolls in and out because of bad cutting if it's a wide back. Hoping this was helpful.
  10. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from Oma in Need advice on loading my backs   
    The way I load works well for me and I've shared here many times.
    I make sure the edge I load on the front roller is straight-of-grain, either by having a selvedge edge or a torn edge. No guessing, it must be straight. I pin that straight edge to the front roller and then bring the fabric under the leveler roller and over the back take-up roller. I go to the back and pull all the backer fabric tight and even, making a "table" of the backer fabric and keeping it taut, eyeballing so the sides are lined up front and back. I pool all the excess backer on the table or the floor. I go to the front and use the power advance to slowly roll the backer onto the front roller. Notice nothing is pinned except to the front. The canvas of the leader has enough "bite" to keep the fabric in line and flat. I watch to make sure the fabric coming across the back roller is straight and flat. If I get some lumps or ruffles on top of the back roller (which means it's not rolling straight) I stop, go to the back, and smooth and pull the backer tight across the top of the roller. Then back to the front for more loading. I roll, stop, smooth, roll, smooth, until the backer fabric clears the top of the table in back. You can see if the backer is square by whether the far edge is even across the length of the table top. If one side is lower, I place pins all along that are in a straight line with the table top and use those as a guide for where to pin to the back leader. I also use a piece of tape or a blue marker to mark the side edges of the leader so I can line up the sides correctly for the final pinning. Then I pin the straight edge to the leader, making sure to use the pinned line and the side marks as guides. After it's all pinned, I go to the front and roll the slack part of the backer onto the back roller and then all of it onto the front roller. This is usually enough to be ready for the next steps, but you can roll back and forth a few times to make sure all is level.
    This method will also allow you to load a skewed backer without trimming it. As long as you have one perfectly straight edge, the rest will load on-grain and you can tell if the backer scrolls in and out because of bad cutting if it's a wide back. Hoping this was helpful.
  11. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from CyndiC in Need advice on loading my backs   
    The way I load works well for me and I've shared here many times.
    I make sure the edge I load on the front roller is straight-of-grain, either by having a selvedge edge or a torn edge. No guessing, it must be straight. I pin that straight edge to the front roller and then bring the fabric under the leveler roller and over the back take-up roller. I go to the back and pull all the backer fabric tight and even, making a "table" of the backer fabric and keeping it taut, eyeballing so the sides are lined up front and back. I pool all the excess backer on the table or the floor. I go to the front and use the power advance to slowly roll the backer onto the front roller. Notice nothing is pinned except to the front. The canvas of the leader has enough "bite" to keep the fabric in line and flat. I watch to make sure the fabric coming across the back roller is straight and flat. If I get some lumps or ruffles on top of the back roller (which means it's not rolling straight) I stop, go to the back, and smooth and pull the backer tight across the top of the roller. Then back to the front for more loading. I roll, stop, smooth, roll, smooth, until the backer fabric clears the top of the table in back. You can see if the backer is square by whether the far edge is even across the length of the table top. If one side is lower, I place pins all along that are in a straight line with the table top and use those as a guide for where to pin to the back leader. I also use a piece of tape or a blue marker to mark the side edges of the leader so I can line up the sides correctly for the final pinning. Then I pin the straight edge to the leader, making sure to use the pinned line and the side marks as guides. After it's all pinned, I go to the front and roll the slack part of the backer onto the back roller and then all of it onto the front roller. This is usually enough to be ready for the next steps, but you can roll back and forth a few times to make sure all is level.
    This method will also allow you to load a skewed backer without trimming it. As long as you have one perfectly straight edge, the rest will load on-grain and you can tell if the backer scrolls in and out because of bad cutting if it's a wide back. Hoping this was helpful.
  12. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from pinecreekquilting in 2000 Millenium For Sale   
    I'll tread lightly  and advise that your price is rather high. There's a 2006 Millie for $6000 on the forum and while that price is a steal, you might want to contact APQS to ask what a reasonable price would be for your 15 year-old Millie. If you lower the price you can pull the add-ons and sell them separately. Believe it or not, a 14' table is a hard sell as well....
     
    Another thought---would there be room on the moving van for your machine? That might get it closer to a potential buyer in the west. Just a thought and good luck with the sale!
  13. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from quilterkp in Basting   
    You can easily baste by setting your stitches-per-inch at 8 and stitching in manual mode. The needle goes so slowly that you can move the machine to make extra long stitches. I try for about a half-inch long. 
  14. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from CrazyAboutQuilting in Need help again with how to quilt?   
    The house shapes can be marked into triangles using the adjacent seams. The smaller house can have 5 triangles and the larger house 6 triangles. Make sure you're careful to mark them all the same (meaning, if you mark a square and then into triangles, make sure when you halve it into triangles the lines match in each similar space---don't ask why I'm mentioning this...  ) Mark the triangles and CC them. Use a more decorative CC if the budget allows. Feathers in the star points will be lovely.
  15. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from jbnt9999 in Need help again with how to quilt?   
    If you're going to put feathers in the center star diamonds, do the same in the matching rust-colored outer diamonds between the houses. What are the plans for the background?
  16. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from quilterkp in Need a little pep talk - share your stories of starting out!   
    You can do it you can do it you can do it! There's a pep talk!
    The key to the whole thing is just one thing--customers.
    Sounds lame and simple, but it's the truth.
    Do all the things you need to do to build a customer base.
    Join guilds, (and be sure you make friends and contribute there and not be thought that you're there to troll for customers).
    Make friends at the LQS.
    Be generous.
    Build your skills so you have lots to offer.
    I think you're on track and have a realistic grasp of what it will take. As you improve and do more customer quilting you'll find a niche--either you'll fill a local need for a specific technique (like E2E or custom) or you'll find the type of quilting you love and that makes your heart sing--and you'll get so good at it that the customers will seek you out.
    I practiced and quilted for friends for five months before a business card at an LQS brought me my first customer. It was slow going the first year and I learned so much quilting customer quilts. The second year I doubled the first in net income and number of quilts. Third year I doubled the second year and reach the maximum I'm willing to take in per month. I started in 2005 and love it more every year!
  17. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from jbnt9999 in Need help again with how to quilt?   
    The house shapes can be marked into triangles using the adjacent seams. The smaller house can have 5 triangles and the larger house 6 triangles. Make sure you're careful to mark them all the same (meaning, if you mark a square and then into triangles, make sure when you halve it into triangles the lines match in each similar space---don't ask why I'm mentioning this...  ) Mark the triangles and CC them. Use a more decorative CC if the budget allows. Feathers in the star points will be lovely.
  18. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from Quilta93 in Recommendation for Quilt Pattern   
    Do an on-line search for "medallion quilt patterns". My guild had a BOM two years ago where instead of Block of the Month it was Border of the Month. Members started with a 20" square center using any technique, from one piece of fabric, to applique, to paper piecing.  Then one border was added per month. Some very creative and beautiful quilts resulted.
  19. Upvote
    ffq-lar reacted to Corey in How would you quilt this?   
    I love this quilt, log cabin courthouse steps.
    The most effective way I quilted a similar quilt (IMHO) was circles like Linda's suggestion. Time consuming, lots of starts & stops but worth it. The quilting will complement the quilt top/piecing.
    Circle Lord sells gizmo to make circles,
    Linda Rech's website has topper tools, either way you will have to invest because circles are best done with tools like these.
  20. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from gardenslug in Vintage Double Wedding Ring quilt   
    My customer picked up this vintage DWR top at a local antique mall for $60. The fabric is vintage feed sacks with 1930's solids and everything is hand-pieced except the green four patches. One piece in an edge arc had a hole and she replaced with a scrap of 30's feed sack fabric she inherited from her mom. One or two arc seams were repaired as well. It has some stains and dye transfer from being folded on itself, but she'll use Synthrapol and a mild restoration soap to do the final cleaning after she binds it. Wool batting made everything so nice.
    I did an era-friendly flower design, a double leaf in the yellow football shapes and CC's over pairs of arc piecing. She's in love with it and so am I!
     
    Here's a link to Flickr. Arrow right when you get there for detail shots. Thanks for looking! I'm off to MQX tomorrow and so excited to see everyone!
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/larech/10158175903/
  21. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from judyday in How would you quilt this?   
    Perhaps use a circle template, circle board, or circle-making machine to drop a 5" circle with the center in the tiny free-standing contrasting squares. Your second photo has the perfect one--- the square with the tiny "X" would be the center of the circle and the edge of the circle would kiss the seams between each square. Circles/curves will be a nice contrast to the graphics of the tiny logs and not be dense at all. It would have a modern feel as well--gorgeous quilt with wonderful colors!
  22. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from Zora in How would you quilt this?   
    Perhaps use a circle template, circle board, or circle-making machine to drop a 5" circle with the center in the tiny free-standing contrasting squares. Your second photo has the perfect one--- the square with the tiny "X" would be the center of the circle and the edge of the circle would kiss the seams between each square. Circles/curves will be a nice contrast to the graphics of the tiny logs and not be dense at all. It would have a modern feel as well--gorgeous quilt with wonderful colors!
  23. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from T Row Studio in How would you quilt this?   
    Perhaps use a circle template, circle board, or circle-making machine to drop a 5" circle with the center in the tiny free-standing contrasting squares. Your second photo has the perfect one--- the square with the tiny "X" would be the center of the circle and the edge of the circle would kiss the seams between each square. Circles/curves will be a nice contrast to the graphics of the tiny logs and not be dense at all. It would have a modern feel as well--gorgeous quilt with wonderful colors!
  24. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from dbams in How would you quilt this?   
    Perhaps use a circle template, circle board, or circle-making machine to drop a 5" circle with the center in the tiny free-standing contrasting squares. Your second photo has the perfect one--- the square with the tiny "X" would be the center of the circle and the edge of the circle would kiss the seams between each square. Circles/curves will be a nice contrast to the graphics of the tiny logs and not be dense at all. It would have a modern feel as well--gorgeous quilt with wonderful colors!
  25. Upvote
    ffq-lar got a reaction from Oma in How would you quilt this?   
    Perhaps use a circle template, circle board, or circle-making machine to drop a 5" circle with the center in the tiny free-standing contrasting squares. Your second photo has the perfect one--- the square with the tiny "X" would be the center of the circle and the edge of the circle would kiss the seams between each square. Circles/curves will be a nice contrast to the graphics of the tiny logs and not be dense at all. It would have a modern feel as well--gorgeous quilt with wonderful colors!
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