Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Learning to Long Arm

Back in March I took a class at Mulqueen's Sewing Center in Glendale, to learn how to use a long arm sewing machine.  Needing to go back and practice, I had set up times twice to rent the machine and each time my work got in the way and I had to cancel   :(  
It wasn't until I had my sewcation and went with my sister to Cowles Quilting and Sewing center in St. Albans, VT, that I had contact again with a long arm.  And oh boy, what a machine that one was! We got another lesson and actually used a Gammil Statler (that's a computerized machine).
Any way, once we did that, I was all jazzed up to get back to practice. On Friday, I returned to Mulqueen's, rented the machine, and quilted a quilt.

I think it came out fairly well for a first one! I used a pantograph because I thought it would be nicer to do something other than just a meander.  Here are some photos:

The quilt loaded onto the long arm table

This is the pantograph pattern I used

My first attempt at a quilt label
I need to explain the label.  After leaving Mulqueen's, I was really hungry. I had been at the long arm for 6 hours and not taken a break to eat, drink, or potty!  Mulqueen's is over on the west side of the valley so as I got into my car, I was trying to think of someplace between there and home where I could grab something to eat.  Of course!!! There was a Starbuck's on 43rd Ave. and Thunderbird!  As I got close, I remembered there was also a quilt shop there (wink) and of course I would just have to stop in to "The Other Quilt Shop".
I went in and the owner, Sheri, helped me choose a binding. She asked if I had my label already made and when I told her I have never put a label on any of my quilts, she started to tear up! She told me this story about a young girl who started a quilt in 1886 at the tender age of 15. It was all handpieced. Sheri had photos of the quilt, the girl who made it, and even a photograph of the notes she had made. All this to let me know that while I may think my quilt isn't worth much, someone 50 to 100 years from now may want to know.
The label doesn't have much information on it but I am not sure yet how much I want to put on a label!
I am ending now so that I can put the last stitches into the binding.  Then on to the next projects . . .


  1. Love the colors of the quilt and your quilting design! Show a picture of the whole quilt! :)

  2. I'm bringing my quilt you made me and you're putting a label on it! :)

  3. Great quilt. I love the quilting design you've picked. And yes on the label...A quilt that I've made never leaves my home without a label.