Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Setting Up For Quilting At Home

Quilting Day Two:

After finishing my quilting 101 class I knew that I'd need more fabric to practice with and to pick up the sewing machine from Costco. Since I work later in the day on Tuesdays I had a 2.25 hour time block before work where I could run around town picking up fabric and my sewing machine, and then see how far I could get at getting my quilting area at home set up. My wonderful husband agreed that the dining room would be a great place for me to set up for quilting since we don't use the room too often and it has a large table and plenty of light. 

So at 9:00 a.m. I set out to accomplish my task. I first went to Goodwill where I was able to pick up three bags of fabrics for a total cost of $2.97 :) (1 with three types of holiday fabric, 1 with some pastel and red/white fabric, and another with a large about of light blue fabric). Next I went to Savers where they sell fabric individually but it's usually at least a yard of fabric or more. There I got a great red Christmas print fabric, a beautiful pastel pink and orange fabric with birds for $2.50 total. By 9:40 I had made it to Costco, got gas in my car, and at 9:45 they started letting people in early. I had my sewing machine in my cart and was through the checkout line by 9:50am and left with a Diet Coke in my hand and a smile on my face!  

By 10:00 a.m. I had made it back to my house. As I mentioned before I knew that the Brother sewing machine was the one I would get so of course even before purchasing I had watched the informational set up video for the machine on YouTube. This was helpful because when I arrived home I knew I'd have 1 hour and 20 minutes before I needed to leave to work, and I realized the set up video was about 20 minutes long-- so that would mean I should be able to have the machine up and going pretty quickly and have time to run a few test stitches before needing to leave for work. 

Sure enough the machine was pretty easy to set up, just follow the video. **Note to all people who buy a sewing machine--- the machines do not come with spools of thread, you'll want to buy at least one before bringing yours home and trying to set it up or you'll be spending 20 minutes of your 1 hour and 20 minutes driving to the closes Albertson's to get thread so you can complete set up like I did** The only struggle I had in setting the machine up was the automatic threader for the upper thread. I felt like it would just not catch-- after watching the video on a ten-second repeat about 5 times I realized I just was releasing the lever to fast and it couldn't catch. Once I figured this out I go the upper and lower thread set. 

To practice sewing I just cut a few strips of fabric and ran lines through. I knew I'd need to figure out where my 1/4 inch marker was before I started to make any sort of quilting blocks. The machine I purchased came with 8 different feet... however the only one it didn't come with was the 1/4 inch quilting foot which I immediately purchased on Amazon for $12.00 and paid to have it shipped over night (I <3 Amazon Prime). Once I figured out the seam allowance issue I cut a few strips of fabric and made another 9 Square block, by the time it was complete I had to head out the door to get to work, but I was super happy to see that I retained my knowledge from the night before and the sewing machine didn't get the best of me. 

The Block on the left was made in the 101 class, the block on the right I made at home in about 15 minutes!

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