Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Longarm Quilting "Moda Modern in Print"

Loaded Lengthwise: The Starting Block

"Moda Modern in Print"

Long on my list to quilt, Moda Modern Building Blocks is finally in the frame. You can see above that I was all "anti-solid" fabrics, and substituted my beloved prints. 90% were from my stash, but a few odd ones were picked because they matched the shade in the pattern. You can read about individual block construction (and errata) below. This was a fun quilt, but shockingly begun nearly 2 years ago to the day!

June 9, 2015 Moda Modern Mashup
June 11, 2015 When to Ask for Help
June 13, 2015 Pet Project Show #24
August 4, 2015 One Year Blogiversary
August 7, 2015 Close, but No Cigar
August 10, 2015 Moda Modern Flimsy Finish

Every quilt needs a bit of whimsy! 
I have kitty cats.

Long Arm 101

 The quilt is loaded in the frame in sections. The backing loaded first, and attached at both ends. (Think of old scrolls here.) The backing is rolled up on from the bottom onto what is known as the 'belly bar'. The batting is laid over the backing, and basted across the top. It hangs down freely. The quilt top is also rolled onto a pole or bar, and stitched on top of the batting. As the quilt is quilted, adjustments are made to unroll backing and quilt top together with the batting sandwiched in between. The trick is keeping everything smooth, even, and well adjusted.

Working in Sections

This quilt is pinned in lengthwise. This gives me more working area at one time, and is desirable. I planned the quilting ahead of loading by adding some marks to the top while I could see the entire piece. Once the quilt is loaded you are a little out of luck if you haven't made a plan. Rolling and unrolling isn't always possible, and you are working within a small section such as above. This is a very large block, but will never be visible all at once while on the frame. Yes, it makes this all the more interesting!

Taking lots of pictures helps you remember how something was quilted, but drawing and notes do, too. You may not see it, but the printout below is well marked as I go.

The center of the flying geese block comes together.

Detail in the center of the star.

There have been loads of thread changes so far. I have a great thread stash so little worry, but this was an odd shade.

Would you believe this orange blended so well with the salmon?

Bright thread makes for a colorful backing!

Are All Your Machines 
On Surge Protectors?

I will leave you with some good advice at last. Put all your machines on surge protectors, and USE them. The last thing I do before leaving the studio is flip the power switches all OFF. This breaks the circuit entirely offering you more protection. Think of it as UNPLUGGING your machine. This is spring here in Ohio, and pop up storms happen frequently with lightning strikes not uncommon. Take care of your investment! If you do get hit, be forewarned that your insurance company will ask if you were using one.

Come on, Doxie girls.
One run outside, then time to sew.


Sandra Walker said...

So do you wind your own bobbins with the same thread you are using on top, and what IS that thread may I ask? Is the entire backing white? It is going to look SO cool if so with all the colours!

Linda Swanekamp said...

I float my tops, for better or worse. I also unplug my machine every time I am done with it. All those sensitive electronics are susceptible to any kind of fluctuation. I have a Nolting NV and wish I was a better longarm quilter. I did freemotion on a domestic before, which I think is easier, but my neck and shoulders can't push a quilt around anymore.

Tish Stemple said...

Oh, heavens yes to the surge protector!!! I actually unplug the Sweet16 when she's not in use. Julie, you inspired me to start making this quilt a few years ago and seeing all these pictures makes me want to run home and work on it again. Why did I stop??

Stitchin At Home said...

Great advice for using serge protectors and unplugging. I've had to deal with insurance from a power outage...not fun.

KaHolly said...

It's looking so good! I'd sure love to have a long arm. Maybe someday!

helenjean@midgetgemquilts said...

It was interesting to see how the process of long arm quilting come together . The whole BA flight crisis showed last weekend what a power surge can do .

Mary Marcotte said...

I was laughing at myself as I read your post. I rarely make a plan--except for customer quilts, of course. That means on my own quilts I may forget what I've done before, and heaven knows, I have no idea what will come up next. Of course, my favorite quilts are modern and my favorite quilting is more like graffiti quilting and playing with as many motifs as I can dream up.
However, I learned a few things as I read and will put those into action. I like the idea of printing a photo of the quilt to help remember what the whole quilt looks like. I easily remember my own, but occasionally I'll have one for someone else and if the pattern is not the same throughout, I have to roll back and forth, aso you mentioned. Being able to mark on the picture is a great idea, also. Thanks for sharing your process and giving us tips for our own quilting. Your work is beautiful. It's no wonder that you have so many quilts lined up!

Kate said...

Gorgeous, gorgeous quilting! Congrats on being so close to a finish. I use surge protectors on all my sewing stuff and unplug it all when I'm finished. Pop up storms are pretty common in Oklahoma too.

Rebecca Grace said...

Ooh, so excited to see your Moda Modern Building Blocks on the frame! I started my own version of that a couple of months ago, in between other projects as usual... I have completed exactly ONE block. I need to get back to it! Your quilting is looking great, by the way. Love what you're doing with the rulers for this quilt.

helen said...

Nice cat fabric.