Wednesday, July 24, 2013

W.I.P Wednesday - A little dress and quilt back

Its been 2 years since I started quilting and I used to sew clothes before that. And its been 2 years since I made any dresses for me or my daughter.

I bought this smocked fabric last year when she was still in love with Dora. Its amazing to see what an year can do. She just seems more matured and big just in an year :-(. Luckily she is still willing to wear this dress when I finish soon.

Frills using Kona tulip purple (I know it looks blue in this pic)

I was working on my quilt backing for my Metro Hoops quilt, blogged here. Lately I seem not to waste any fabric which is leftover from making quilt top. So, I made this back block using the left over scrap from. I was planning to quilt this on the long arm , due to time constraint it didn't go well :(.
Metro Hoops Quilt back

Now linking up my progress Lee @Freshly Pieced blog.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Getting started with Longarm - 1

When I started making lots of quilt tops and couldn't keep up with the quilting on the domestic sewing machine. I went looking for alternatives and started renting long arm at my LQS: Bits N Pieces. Liz the owner of the shop and her daugher Alyssa are just awesome!

This is going to be series of posts to getting started with longarm who have already experience with free motion quiliting on the home/domestic sewing machine(HSM/DSM). I will be sharing my experience transitioning to long-arm and some helpful hints so that you don't make the same mistakes as I did.

Preparing your quilt for long arm checklist:
1. Square up your quilt top, trim all the threads so that it doesn't get caught up while quilting.
2. Your batting should be at least 3 inches longer and wider than your quilt top.
3. Backing should be at least 4 inches longer and wider than quilt top. Preferably 6 inches is good.
4. Square off the top and bottom of the quilt backing so that its straight of grain.

Now comes the dilemma about what FMQ designs to choose from. Lets talk about "Regulated mode". The "Regulated Mode" on the long arm helps to ensure that your stitch lengths are regular. What should we try:
1. Choose Precision Mode - SPI(Stitches Per Inch) set it 12. You can start with 10 which is wider than 12.
2. % I usually set it to 35% since I tent to move the longarm rather fast. I have tried till 40% it seems to be okay.
3. While working with regulated mode choose a FMQ design which has straight lines up and down. The weight of the machine helps you get your straight lines up and down perfectly.

See below an example of my first attempt at straight line based FMQ design:
I haven't set a particular day for these posts will try my best whenever I can.
Will be back with more tips soon. I also recommend taking the introductory course if you can at your LQS, to get familiar with the long arm. I have used HQ Avante and really love that machine.

Happy Quilting!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

W.I.P. Wednesday - Getting ready for Lowell Quilt Festival

This year LQF(Lowell Quilt Festival) has invited BMQG again for a special Modern quilts exhibition. And I am planning to submit couple of quilts for the show and also participating in our Mini quilt challenge.

So, here is what I have been working on for this week:
Fabric selection for my LQF mini quilt challenge:

Red fabrics in different color values

You can see the different color values
Got my Indian Summer baby quilt all bound.
Quilt back

Indian Summer baby Quilt - 32 x 48 inches
Now linking up to Lee's W.I.P. Wednesday@FreshlyPieced blog.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

FMQFriday with Leah Day - July 12th

I had finished this quilt top last year in fall. And has been sitting in the closet for a long time. I finally got to quilt this on the longarm this week. The fabric line is Indian Summer by Riley Blake designs.

Quilt top
I was finally able to figure out a setting on the long arm to get my quilting curves back. I still love quilting on my DSM but I have so many quilt tops it would take me for ever to quilt them at home. That's the reason I love using the longarm to get things done faster, but I still would like them look nice.

Closeup of figure8 FMQ design

Quilt back is the flannel from the same line with big flowers
Soon I will be sharing up tips on getting started on the longarm. Sometimes its just a matter of figuring out what settings works best for our quilting skills and the FMQ design.

Happy Quilting!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

W.I.P. Wednesdays - Metro Hoops Wall hanging & Quilts for Boston

Hay!! I finally got my binding done for the Metro Hoops Wall Hanging. I used the Riley Blake's Simple Life White on Red tiny polka dot print for the binding. Here it is:
Metro Hoops Wall Hanging

Quilt Back with hanging corners attached
I also completed another quilt top for "Quilts for Boston". I am hoping to get this one quilted next week.

Now linking up to Lee's W.I.P. Wednesdays for this week.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

FMQ Friday with Leah Day - Tumbling Blocks quilt

This quilt was quilted a while ago but I never I got to blog about it. Probably I finished quilting this in 2nd week of June just in time for our June meet@BMQG.

I am still getting accquainted with long arm, but still wanted to try feathers. So, quilted feathers around the blocks and flowers inside the white squares. And stippling inside the print squares.

Tumbling blocks quilt 
this does create lot of texture which you can see at the back of the quilt.
Tumbling blocks quilt back
Overall I am happy with the quilt, thought it does look like a beginner FMQ. Will have to work on it more @the longarm.
Now linking up to Leah Day's FMQ Fridays.