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Hello From the Airforce

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Sammylynn87 Posted: Tue, Oct 8 2013 5:19 AM

Hello everyone, I am a active duty military member currently serving in the united states Air Force.  I am brand new to quilting and I am looking for any adive anyone can give me.  I started quilting a few years ago after coming back from Afganistain.  I came home with PTSD and a Panic disorder and I have found that quilting has helped me calm down when it happens.  My biggest problem I am having right now is figureing out my measurments and how big I should make different quilts.  Also I need options on the different kinds of sewing machine.  What should i look for to start also free motion quilting.  I am looking forward to hearing the advice the more advance quilters can give me. 

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Welcome Sammylynn

[Ava, Missouri

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Diana replied on Tue, Oct 8 2013 6:26 AM

Welcome Sammylynn and thank you for your service.  

 

We enjoy passing along our love of quilting.  If you know the size of the bed your quilt will be used on, decide how far you want it to hang over the sides of the bed.  It may be you need to add a row to both the length and width.  We will help you along with yourquilting, just ask.

Don't in East Tn

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Dawn replied on Tue, Oct 8 2013 7:20 AM

Welcome!  So glad you found us!  Yep, just ask your ?'s as you go and there is sure to be someone to help you!  Thank you for your service and will be praying for your safety!

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Welcome Sammy and thank you so much for you service. You will find very friendly and kind people here. Everyone is so generous with their information and help.

As far as machines go, if you want to FMQ (free motion quilting), look for a machine with a fairly wide throat. I have an older Bernina and the throat is pretty short. I do FMQ but it is difficult with bigger quilts.

For measurements, there are a lot of free tools out there. Just google quilts sizes or something like that. Almost every "how to quilt" book has those measurements.

Hope to see some pictures of your quilts. Again, welcome and thank you.

Georgetown CA I'd Rather Be Quilting

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Karla replied on Tue, Oct 8 2013 10:05 AM

Thank you for your service, Sammy.  You've come to right place to ask questions and learn.  This is an amazing group of quilters who are full of encouragement and knowledge.  You'll like it here.

 

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safrmaz replied on Tue, Oct 8 2013 10:24 AM

Welcome Sammylynn :)  

We are an Air Force family.  Where are you stationed?

There are many good sewing machines.  My advice would be to shop around and test drive different models and decide which features you want .  Most quilters like having a large throat space.  A good dealer will offer classes or one-on-one lessons to thoroughly familiarize you with your machine and it's features.

Good luck.

 

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Sammylynn87:
Also I need options on the different kinds of sewing machine.  What should i look for to start also free motion quilting

 

Welcome Sammy. good to have you with us. If you are looking to buy a new machine that will work for free motion quilting, be sure it has at least a 10" throat.

I'm looking forward to hearing more from you. Also, check out our Groups section for specific type projects you may be interested in.


In the beautiful Pacific Northwest!

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I am currently stationed at Nellis AFB, but once i get back from my deployement I am moving to Fort Sam houston and I am really excited.  I love to hike so during my off days i hike and then i make quilts based on colors i have seen on my adventures.

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gini replied on Tue, Oct 8 2013 11:09 AM

hi sammylynn, welcome to the group.  you will find lots of help here.  we love questions and helping new quilters out. 

     when you decide on a quilt pattern and a size you are aiming for, bring us the details and we will walk you through how to do it.   it is easy, but sometimes a lot of steps are involved.   

   you want a machine that you can lower the feed dogs.   those are the little grabbers under the needle that pull the fabric along as you sew.  you need to drop those while you are doing the actual quilting. 

  throat space is the distance between the needle and the body of the machine.  the bigger the area, the more quilt you can fit in to free motion quilt.  

   i like a machine that you can isolate the arm under the needle.  on my machine the tool box fits around it and when you remove it  there is a small arm where the needle is.    this allows you to hem pants so much more easily.   and work on bags and round stuff easier.   as long as you are getting a machine, this is a nice feature. 

optional but nice to have for quilting, is a needle up/down feature.  you can position the needle to stay where you want.  you'll want a machine that has a quarter inch foot available.  

with quilting you only need a straight stitch  however, i love the zigzag stitch for machine applique,  you might want that feature.   those decorative stitches are nice to play with,  i use them sometimes to anchor the bindings on childrens' quilts.  

   go to a large quilt show.   you can talk with a lot of dealers, try out a lot of machines, and get an idea of what's out there.   buy as much machine as you can afford. 

gini in north idaho

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gini replied on Tue, Oct 8 2013 11:10 AM

county fairs sometimes have representatives from sewing machine manufacturers, where you can try out several brands at a time.  go to local sewing machine stores and try out all their machines.   

gini in north idaho

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Nana replied on Tue, Oct 8 2013 11:19 AM

Sammy lynn

Welcome.  First I want to say thanks for your service and God Bless.  It looks like you have gotten lots of good advice on a machine.   I love my needle up/down feature.  Especially with free motion quilting.  It helps keep things from slipping when you stop sewing if the needle is in the down position.  I think it is important to have the biggest throat space as is possible.  It is really hard to push a big quilt thru a little throat space,.  As far as brands....  all the big brand machines are good.  Just get the most machine that you can afford.

Vinton, Virginia

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safrmaz replied on Tue, Oct 8 2013 4:26 PM

Sammylynn87:

I am currently stationed at Nellis AFB, but once i get back from my deployement I am moving to Fort Sam houston and I am really excited.  I love to hike so during my off days i hike and then i make quilts based on colors i have seen on my adventures.

You live near me!  We're in Las Vegas, too.  Are you in base housing? We live in the Centennial Hills area next to the Floyd Lamb State Park.

 

 

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Susan replied on Tue, Oct 8 2013 5:13 PM

Welcome, Sammylynn !  Thank You for serving our country! Its a tough job, I know as my husband spent 20 years  in the Navy. I met many wonderful people all over the country in our travels. When he finally retired we missed moving around and meeting new people and seeing new places. Hope you enjoy your time here at QCA . Lots of helpful people here. Good Luck finding the perfect machine for yourself. Just be sure to test them out first and feel good sewing with it. Also, buy from a dealer who will service it for you or in your moving can be serviced elsewhere.     Susan, North, Florida

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MNnancy replied on Tue, Oct 8 2013 9:13 PM

Welcome Sammy Lynn!  We'll look forward to seeing some pictures from you of quilts at any stage of the process.  Feel free to ask lots of questions.  The quilters here have lots of experience and are very good teachers!


On the banks of the Mississippi River in north central Minnesota (Brainerd lakes area)

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