Monday, May 10, 2010

Advice from your Longarm Quilter

This is my Radiant Sky quilt. Just a quick-pick for your enjoyment.

Ladies (and gentlemen) take your longarm quilter’s advice to heart!

As a longarm quilter, I see many quilts. So here’s some free advice for those of you who use a longarm service…….

If your quilter seems hesitant about your choice she probably has a reason. We don’t like to tell you that you are wrong. Maybe our vision for your quilt differs from yours. But if we repeatedly suggest other designs to you, let that be a clue. Your selection is probably fine, but consider our suggestions as well. We are striving for the best possible choice for your quilt and you.

If you cannot understand why we made that suggestion, or if you are curious as to why it is also an option ask your quilter what makes that design as a good match for your quilt. Sometimes it is in the scale of the design. Sometimes it is the density of the quilting. The scale and density need to match the quilt top. Does it need more curves to make it flow better? Does it need something geometric to add zip? How about themes to match or accentuate? ABC’s? Animals? Shoes? Swirls?

We want the designs and threads you choose to accent your work, not take it over. The wrong choice will make your quilt less than it might have been with a different selection.

We see quilts of all shapes and sizes and of all skill levels. 99% of them are quite lovely. Occasionally a quilt will have some technical difficulties. If we ask about your borders or your seam allowances, there is usually a reason. Many quilters, myself included have information packages on different techniques. If you are given one, or offered one, accept it and peruse the information it contains. Perhaps it is our way of helping you improve your techniques and make your quilts better.

The most common mistake I see is poorly added borders. When you lay your quilt on a flat surface, it should be flat. No ripples, bumps, waves or puckering in the borders or center area. If you have these, you need to revisit your techniques. These flaws will NOT “quilt out.” Ask for help! We want your quilt to be the best it can be, for you and to make our work easier.

Remember that we see hundreds of quilts every year. Our experience has taught us what may work and what may not. Remember too, that we were once beginners who had things to learn. Quilter’s are a group of generous and helpful souls… we want to share what we know.

Visit for some free downloadable tip sheets. If you cannot find what you want there, drop me a line and I’ll help you out.

Keep on quilting.


1 comment:

  1. Thank you Cathy for a wonderful article. The longarm quilters are like specialist. I always let them do what is best for the quilt to enhance the quilt that I have spent hrs, days, weeks, months and even years making. I hope lots of people see this article. I know I'll be e-mailing it to all my friends.


Sadly, ad bots have snagged onto my blog. This means you have fight your way through the silly and frustrating word verification process. Please persevere. I do value your feedback.