While the photos in this post may not be exciting, you'll have to trust me that my lesson on a long arm quilting machine was very exciting!  At the Heart of Quilting is a dealer for Gammill longarm quilting machines and they are located here in Beloit.  And, better yet, they rent time on their machines.

The lesson started with how to load the quilt back, batting and top onto the table.  (I have no photos of this process.)  Then we learned how to thread the machine and we had to practice it 3 times.  Then we learned about all of the buttons (I'll have to get a shot of the machine in action next time).  And then we basted the edges and started quilting.

I started with loopdeloops.
long arm quilting lessons

Then I tried a house shape, some pebbles, some meandering and some flowers. 
long arm quilting lessons

Then I did some rough straight lines.
long arm quilting lessons

And lastly, we learned how to use a laser light to follow a drawn pattern. 
long arm quilting lessons

My favorite parts were 1) not basting with pins(!!!) and 2) feeling how the machine could flow with my movements with very little effort.  In the regulated stitch mode, the machine senses how fast you are moving and changes the speed of the stitches in reference to that.  There is no pedal to push.  You just stand and move your arms to take the machine where you want it to sew.  Very, very cool.

My lesson was last night, and I went back today to practice on a small quilt.  I'll show you soon!


Mama Hoot said...

I am very, very impressed. And what courage you have for taking on something so big. I am so glad you liked it and I can't wait to see more!

Anna said...

This is just super! You did very well! Those little houses are SO cute! I'd love to have the possibility to try something like this one day! It sounds like you had a great time! :)

Souhair said...

Beautiful! You did a great job!

Tania said...

OOOOH! I'm right with you on the excitement front. I'd love to gice one of those thingummyjigs a whirl (and in so doing finally complete that quilt I started two years ago. Ahem)...

melissa said...

oh wowzers! that is extremely cool!!
that house is blowing my mind.
how awesome that you can rent time on them as well.

sewtakeahike said...

Wow Melinda, your machine quilting looks so awesome!! That's something I really need to practice!

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