Learnnig To Long Arm Quilt

Well, this past Monday I took the plunge and went to my first long arm quilting class.  There is a gal that runs a quilt shop from her home here locally and she rents time on “Sally” the longarm quilting machine.

What fun!

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Above is my first attempt at doodling on the long arm.  Not to bad – I like doing the little curly Q things – now stippling – hmmm, I still haven’t gotten those smooth graceful curves yet, but it will come.

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Above I free-handed some  random flowers and attempted ribbon like stuff in the bottom right of the photo.  Hmmm, doesn’t look to much like ribbons, but I tried!

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Above is my first ever attempt at following a pantograph.  It’s suppose to be a rose with my “added” vines in those little leaves.  Let me tell ya – it’s a lot easier to do free hand work than it is to follow a pantograph for me!  I’m not that great at tracing those little lines yet with a little red laser light! I felt like I was in grade school again learning cursive hand writing! (Aunt Teresa and Aunt Julie – if you are reading this – I did these roses on purpose for you – this is one of the patterns that Miss Bonnie uses on her quilts!)

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Here’s another pantograph above – still not that great, but what can I say, it was my first time!

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Now we’re talking – feathers!  I love feathers in quilting and just had to try it.  I free-handed this one and I don’t think I did to bad at all on this first attempt!  The direction of which way to “sway” the feathers got me, but in good time I hope to get it all figured out.  I just really love feathers – I have to learn to do them!

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And to finish up the day, I quilted some more random flowers and squiggly lines.

One thing I’m glad I did was bring solid colored fabric to play on – that way I could see all my stitches easily and I could see the patterns.  But on the other hand – I kind of wish I would have sewn a good calico of assorted colors onto the bottom and quilted that also just to see what it looked like on multi-colored fabric.  I know – I shouldn’t be so hard on myself – but every little mistake really jumps out at you on solid fabric!

I pulled out my Pajama Quilter DVD last night – after I searched for an hour and blew off the dust from it!  I plan on watching the DVD a couple times before I head back to class next Tuesday.  This next class I’m bringing a quilt top that I rescued from ebay.  It’s just a simple little patchwork quilt made of plaid fabrics that I believe were originally recycled from clothing.  This quilt top I bought a few years back with the intent on finishing it and using it as one of our quilts in the camper or one of the quilts that we take along on trips in the truck or for picnics.  I plan on just free-handing some quilting on it – but then again, maybe it would be a good time to try my hand at a pantograph again and really practice those.  I found 4 pantograph patterns online that I want to buy – but I refuse to buy them until I get this whole “tracing” with a laser light thing down!

And on another note – I received an exciting email last night – the newest issue of American Patchwork and Quilting is on it’s way to subscribers!  I will be pouncing on the postman every day until my issue gets here – we have a quilt in this one!  It’s called Two Piece Puzzle and it’s a really pretty quilt all done up in reds, blacks and creams! If you get your issue let me know!  I live so close to where the magazines are shipped from and I’m usually one of the first to receive them – where in the world is my copy!

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