Always check the sizes of fabric, always! Even when a the charity coordinator says it is all measured and ready. Even when the first three quilt tops and backs you did were correctly sized for longarming. Always check! Grrrrr!
It’s been about a month since the Innova long arm came to live with me. It’s been a romance of the worst sort. Wonderful from day one yet full of learning. Some of it frustrating. I’m sure a long armer with experience would know the things I have put upon myself by just jumping in and seeing what happens. I’ll have to take some pics of some awfulness that I self created.
The short list also known as the “slap myself in the head DUH!” List
Don’t move the sew head w the needle down.
It’s easiest to set tension if you have the same kind of thread in the top and in the bobbin.
Thin bobbin thread and thick top thread is very hard for a beginner to set the tension for.
Cheapi fabric is cheapi fabric. You get what you pay for.
It takes LOTS longer to quilt blocks than an all over edge to edge.
I hate ripping out stitches!
Husband likes peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for dinner!
You can’t practice destroying quilts if you are out of town.
The Learning List a.k.a. Stuff I Figured out but could probably have learned by reading a manual or paying better attention in class
When quilting crosshatching with the autopilot don’t do the whole outlined hollow diamond shape, do half of it at a time. If you do it all at once you will get a royal mess and dense run stitching that isn’t very pretty. It ends up stiff thick and butt ugly!
Change your needle when things look crappy. For example, if the tension is right, and everything is right but for some reason it just all looks lackluster as if the stitches have wilted. CHANGE the needle.
Did I say BASTE?
The crosshatching tool in ABM Autopilot is really neat. But it doesn’t do a good job on areas that are shaped kinda like a C. It makes insane amounts of run stitching around the edges. I ended up with 1/4 inch wide dense stitching around a shape. The shape was three side of a four sided diamond that was hollow in the middle.
I’ll add more as I think of things.