Friday, January 16, 2009
String Study and Quilting Questions
Another small scrap quilt exploring line, color and texture.
This String Study Art Quilt measures 8 1/4" x 15 3/4" and is available here.
I have been receiving questions lately as to whether or not I quilt my pieces on a longarm machine, (A special sewing machine that is attached to a long quilting frame. The quilter controls the machine standing up, holding onto the machines handle bars. The machine glides back and forth across the quilt. It is possible to quilt an entire king size bed quilt in a matter of hours with one of these babies!)
... The answer is No!
I, at this time can neither afford one, (even the poor man's version) nor do I have any room to set one up in my pretty cramped abode. (Just ask my poor neglected beautiful floor loom, sitting alone and unused, folded up in a cramped section of our cold... very, very cold, basement. If there's no room for her, there's no room for a longarm!) I do all of my sewing and quilting on my trusty 12 year old Bernina. A discontinued, (but once top of the line) model #1630, which in my humble opinion was the best model they ever made, and I love her dearly!
I have also been asked what quilting stitch I used on this quilt. Well, on my machine it is simply referred to as "Practical stitch #4". When set to it's standard stitch length of 1/4 and stitch width of 5, it is basically a close zigzag stitch made up of lots of small stitches. (Sorry I don't have a picture of that. I just happened to take these photos last week. As I type this it is night time and I am too tired to try and get a decent shot of what "Practical stitch #4" normally looks like.)
Anyway, for this quilt, the stitch length was switched to a 2 and stitch width kept at a 5. This minor adjustment made a completely new stitch. Now of course your machine is likely different then mine, but I would encourage you to play around with different stitches, and variations on the width and length settings and see what you come up with.
By the way, I used a walking foot when quilting this. Anytime I do any standard machine quilting... (other then free-motion quilting which is when you use a darning foot, set the stitch length to zero, drop your feed dogs and go baby go!) ... where the fabric travels in a straight line under the presser foot and above the feed dogs like in regular sewing, I use a walking foot. They run about $100.00 for a Bernina. (Bernina attachments ain't cheap!) The investment is worth every penny though, as a walking foot enables all 3 layers of the quilt; top, batting and backing, to be fed evenly through the machine. If I were to use a regular presser foot, the layers would feed unevenly, causing a sloppy quilting job, with puckers and folds.
Hope that helps!
Have a great weekend everyone!