Blog Hop Starts Tuesday, Sept. 1st!


Hi all!  Jaftex is celebrating their 85th anniversary the WHOLE month of September.  Each day they will have a featured blogger who will be giving out a 20 piece fat quarter bundle to one lucky winner.  My day is September 12th.  There will be other prizes included, that will be picked in October, to include a sewing machine for the grand prize winner along with bigger and more fabric bundles to the runners up.  So, make sure you stop by the following blogs on his or her designated day and leave a comment for a chance to win!  Links to their blogs are included below.  Good luck!

September 1 – Kim Diehl guest posting @ American Patchwork & Quilting
September 2 – Pepper @ Pepper at the Quilt Studio
September 3 – Anjeanette @ Anjeanette Klinder
September 4 – Leanne @ The Whole Country Caboodle
September 5 – Mark @ Mark Lipinski’s Blog
September 6 – Heather @ Heather Kojan Quilts
September 7 – Heather @ Trends and Traditions
September 7 – Martha @ Wagons West Design
September 8 – Linda @ Linda Lum DeBono
September 9 – Heidi @ Red Letter Quilts
September 10 – Jill @ Jillily Studios
September 10 – Dana @ My Lazy Daisy
September 11 – Penny @ Sew Simple Designs
September 12 – Ida @ Cowtown Quilts
September 13 – Liz and Beth @ Lizzie B Cre8ive
September 14 – Melissa @ Sew Bitter Sweet Designs
September 15 – Yvonne @ Quilting Jetgirl
September 16 – Amy @ Kati Cupcake
September 16 – Barbara @ QuiltSoup2
September 17 – Erica @ Kitchen Table Quilting
September 18 – Leona @ Leona’s Quilting Adventure
September 19 – Margot @ The Pattern Basket
September 20 – Sylvia @ Flying Parrot Quilts
September 21 – Lorna @ Sew Fresh Quilts
September 22 – Kim @ Aurifil Threads
September 23 – Rebekah @ Don’t Call Me Becky
September 24 – Julie @ The Crafty Quilter
September 25 – Mary Ellen @ Little Quilts
September 25 – Mary Jane @ Holly Hill Designs
September 26 – Daisy @ Ants to Sugar
September 27 – Melissa @ Happy Quilting
September 28 – Janet @ One S1ster Designs
September 29 – Jenny @ Martingale& Co.
September 30 – Teresa @ Third Floor Quilts


LongArm Perspectives

I thought I’d share a few pictures of my longarm quilting machine and explain a couple of  differences between a longarm and a domestic machine.  This first shot is of part of the machine.  You can see how it sits on rollers and it has a bigger arm/throat space than a domestic machine.  Mine has 19″ to work with.  Domestic machines sit without moving.  You have to move the fabric around on a domestic machine to do the quilting.  You can also drop the feed dogs on your sewing machine to do free-motion quilting.  When you do that, you get the sensation of what it is like for a longarm quilter to quilt.


Here is a shot of more of the machine’s frame.  You can see the the machine floats around on a frame that has several roller bars for the fabric to roll along.  Longarm quilting machines… as big as a car and costs as much, too!


If you look closely at the hopping foot (as opposed to the presser foot), you will see that it does not sit down on the base of the machine.  It hovers across the fabric.  That is why it is so difficult to draw a straight line.  We use a straight edge ruler for this, which takes a LOT longer to do, since you are manipulating the machine with one hand while holding the ruler with the other hand.  It takes a lot of patience to get that line even close to straight, which is why custom work like this costs our customers so much more.


When we use rulers and templates, we need to add an extended base for the templates to rest upon.  Do you notice how much more it sticks out than the attached base?


I took a ruler to see how much further the extended base sticks out on each side.  As you can see, it adds an extra 5 1/2 – 6 inches on each side.  Beyond that, I add clamps to the backing fabric to make sure it is taught.  They add another 2 inches to each side.  This is the reason why I like to have an extra 8 inches of backing fabric on each side of the quilt top.  Otherwise,  custom quilting is next to impossible to do.


This last picture will probably end up in another post as it relates to the lighting – see those LED lights reflected on the Plexiglas?  To be continued…