Friday, July 2, 2010

Machine quilting

Sally wrote and asked the following;

Hi.  I love your two new pieces on your blog.  I was looking at your quilting, especially the "flame" look stitching.  I just finished a quilt that used that type of quilting in part of it and when I turned the quilt over I noticed there were tiny "blobs" of thread at the point of many of the flames.  Am I making any sense?  Do you get those, and if not, how do you avoid them?  And what kind of machine do you use?  BTW, I always look forward to seeing what's new on your blog.  TIA, Sally

Thanks for asking Sally. Without seeing your work my guess would be that you are pausing when you get to the tip of the flame. If you pause while you are quilting in one spot you will create little knots on the back, this is because you are taking more than one stitch in that spot. It is possible that your tension is off a bit as well. You can tighten or loosen the upper tension and see if that helps. One of the things I try to do before beginning to quilt any thing is do a test run on a scrap quilt sandwich. I keep these under my sewing area so that I can just grab one and go. I want to check my tension with what ever thread I have put in the top and the bottom of my machine. I can then make adjustments before I start on my piece.

When I am creating a design I make sure I can use it smoothly. I want to be able to just change direction as I am quilting. So I practice it before I begin to use it in my work. I use those scrap sandwiches to practice, practice, practice so that my quilting is crisp and the flow is smooth. As I make that flame design when I reach the top of flame I just change direction to where I want to go next. I may slow down but I never take extra stitches at the point. That is why practice is so important. IMG_0379-1 fanderson_wood_detail-1 No matter what design you are making, you want your points to be sharp. So get out those sandwiches and practice!

I have a Janome 6600 that I love. This is my third Janome and I have been very happy with all of them. They have a new model out a 7700QCP Horizon. I think if I was in the market for a new machine I would look at this one. But I think it is important to deal with a dealer that is close to where you live so if you don’t have a Janome dealer near you visit the dealer you have and test drive the machines.  A great place to try out all the new models is a quilt show. I bought my second Janome at one of the big quilt shows and they usually have some nice discounts.

Hope this all helps.


Sally said...

Thank you so much for your answer to my "blobs" question. I,m going to make some quilt sandwiches and train myself to do some practice samples before beginning. I also observed that even changes in one brand of thread to another, even though they're the same weight, can affect my stitching. Again thanks for your answer.

O'Quilts said...

I appreciate the tip on the machine quilting that you gave to Sally. It is very helpful. I also have a Janome 6600 which I think is wonderful. I have looked at the 7700 and it does not have a separate bobbin winder like the 6600 and the screw for the feet is in the same awkward position. I never thought I would love a machine as much as my Bernina...but then came my Janome 6600. I just love my machine.

Ali Honey said...

That's very good advice. I know it is the practise I lack. Also though on an ordinary machine the practise pieces are so much easier to handle, usually being small and more easily moved.
I will do more practise! I will . I will.

Print this page