quilting


A photo posted by Teri Lucas (@terilucas) on

but first some lilacs and they smell heavenly!

I’m teaching next week at HMQS. Here’s a link to my classes. I have a little room in a couple of them including, And Now What?! this is a design/doodling class. We’ll play with a lot of designs talking about the options for quilting our quilts. So if you’re going to be in SLC I’d love to see you. I’m really excited as it’s my first time teaching in this venue. 

I know I’ve been sharing about this on and off for a couple of years but the stuff is getting real now as I begin the major work on my book…so if I’m quiet…it’s all good. Pray for me and think good thoughts because this creative sort of person sometimes walks into her sewing room and walks right back out. I’m not sure if it’s a creative block or fear, though it could be a bit of both. I have ideas swirling around in my head. But in speaking with my editor I have some seriously good options.:)

Happy Quilting!

Teri

 

serendipity 3rd time with Bernina 1080Teaching people how to use their sewing machines is almost as fun as teaching quilters how to best use their machines for quilt making. It is in teaching Machine Guide Classes that new machine owners learn what they can do with their new machine from basic maintenance to making a blind hem and a buttonhole. It wasn’t until I started sewing in machines (sewing on them with several different stitches, sometimes they need a wee nip of oil) that I learned how (remembered how?) to do a buttonhole on the non-computerized machines. It must be remembered because I did make them on my old Singer, and in home ec class. For years though it did befuddle me, because – Quilting!
Most times these classes are pretty straightforward. Every now & again someone just gets excited about learning About their machine. What can it do? How can I do this? I want to do this again! How does that work? Oh my goodness this makes the classes so fun. I just love watching people “get it”!
diamond play quilting closeupGetting to know your machine is such a huge part of quilting – the better you know your machine the easier it is to quilt. A basic understanding of tension, and where to change it makes a huge difference when free motion machine quilting through all of the layers of a quilt. Knowing how to adjust the tension is necessary. For most sewing (piecing, garment construction, home dec) the machine tension should stay at the preset, whatever this is. Most machines are between 3 and 5, with most around a 4. On the more computerized machines the tension adjustment is in different, preset increments, however it’s still towards a higher or lower number. For quilting with a walking foot, the preset *should* be fine, however because stitching through the layers, with the interplay of batting and everything else, make sure to check now and again. For Free-Motion quilting this is where understanding machine tension is necessary.

BERNINA Ambassador bobbin work 2 bobbinsI’m going to pause here and tell you something very, very, important: You are smart, and intelligent, and can DO This.

If tension seems a problem when I get started making sure the machine is threaded properly is key, try re-threading first. When free-motion quilting basically if you’re seeing the bobbin thread come up to the top, the top tension is too tight – move the tension dial towards a lower number; if the top thread is showing on the back – move the tension dial towards a higher number. Towards is key here, the adjustment may not be a big move, frequently a small adjustment goes a long way. Sometimes adjusting the tension doesn’t work, that’s when we look at a couple of other things 1) needle and 2) speed. That’s a blog post for another day.

There is a lot of information in that class, particularly on the high end, computerized machines. One thing I realized a few weeks ago, when quilters are kind of uncomfortable with their machines, is that if you own a smart phone or some kind of tablet, you’ll be able to use your machine well. We don’t need to understand all of the features, we just need to be able to use them to our best advantage.

Happy Quilting!

Teri

Mississippi sunriseHowever, the words are not flowing as easily from my keyboard as they usually do. It’s kind of weird. Usually the words flow from my brain to the keyboard, not so much this morning about the intended topic. Instead I sent a private message and included a photo. Getting this particular quilt top complete became something of a mission as I’d been planning on passing it on to someone else to piece. Finishing it feels a major accomplishment.

Quilting #sewbatik #bernina #genqmag finding my happy

A photo posted by Teri Lucas (@terilucas) on

My quilting life has been consumed with commuting and work. Not having a whole lot of time to spend in my sewing room is making me a bit cranky. There are words to write and quilts to make and not necessarily in that order. And yet, for the most part my sewing machine is quiet, thread sits unstitched, batting is ready to be layered into quilts. This is hard. Things will change, at the right time, in the meantime I’m content to see quilts made by friends.
And I’m reflecting on my Word of the Year: Future…still embracing it and exploring it.

Happy Quilting!

Teri

 

 

Happy Monday Quilting Peeps! I do hope you are well and enjoying your quilting. I’ve got a guest blogger today, Gina Perkes! I’ve had the privilege of meeting Gina and sharing breakfast with her, and her delightful mom on more than one occasion. As a long time admirer of her work, I consider Gina to be one person who has influenced my free motion quilting.
Beginning a new scary, yet exciting adventure…shop ownership/longarm dealership – The Copper Needle.Gina Perkes the copper needle So the bottom line is this: I love quilting and have a lifelong commitment to the art of quilt making. I love all things and people associated with and related to this amazing craft. I feel completely blessed to have
the ability to do what I love as a means to support myself and my family. What began as a hobby almost eighteen years ago, has evolved into so much more. In fact, my quilting business was actually requiring not only eighty hours per week from me but also a good fifty percent of my living space. Gina Perkes the copper needle 2Though I am certainly not complaining, I came to the realization that I needed a separate space away from home. My dog and kids were walking around with threads attached to them everywhere they went and folks in my small town were starting to talk…lol !
Gina Perks the copper needle 3Here is what I have learned about running a successful quilting business:
You must become an expert in designing, creating, adapting, reinventing yourself, marketing, photographing, writing, accounting, and staying relevant…no pressure. I guess I am a sucker for a challenge.

Living in a town full of quilters with no quilt store means that I have a great market here but I do hope that my reach will be much larger than just my small Arizona town. My goal is that quilters will want to visit from all over the country to learn, shop, become inspired, etc. My space is beginning small with 1,500 square feet but as the business grows, so will the facility. I will be carrying fabrics, patterns, threads, batting, notions, and a huge selection of machine quilting tools designed by me and other machine quilters. It is my goal to not just promote my own designs and tools but to highlight other teachers, designers, and quilters who have great classes, products, and tools that they’ve developed as well! This is one of the great things about our industry: networking and sharing ideas!
gina perkes copper needle quiltLongarm quilting: My business began with longarm quilting and thrives with this as the center. I provide both computerized edge to edge and custom hand guided longarm quilting services out of my shop. My turn around time is three weeks for edge to edge designs…custom quilting takes up to two months depending on my schedule.

I am now an Innova dealer and my shop will serve as a training center for those wanting to learn about longarm quilting. I am quite busy with my rental services as well. There are many people who do not have the space or budget to purchase a longarm machine but still want to complete their quilts on their own. They complete a training day so that they can receive a “driver’s license” then they come to my studio to complete their projects.

gina Perkes copper needle battingLuckily, I have a wonderful support system and sta who help me to manage all of these ideas that I want to implement. This support allows me to continue to travel all over the country teaching my techniques and writing books for quilters. I have three new books this year! Tips for Longarm quilting was just released in February and was published by American Quilter’s Society. It is a wonderful resource for longarm quilters and a wealth of information about helpful tips and tricks to make our lives easier. I also have an iQuilt class that will be launching this month. It is called Quilting on the Grid and explores techniques for both longarm and domestic quilting, ruler work, free motion quilting, and more. My other two books will be released in the Fall /2016. You can follow me for more information on my crazy, quilty life by subscribing to my blog through my website: The Copper Needle and I hope that you will connect with me through social media. I do instagram (@ginaperkesdesigns), facebook (gina perkes & the copper needle/business page, and coming soon Twitter. I enjoy sharing ideas with other quilters through these social outlets and regularly post photos of quilting eye candy and ideas for inspiration!
Teaching – On the road you can and me at HMQS, OSQE, MQS, Quilt week Grand Rapids, and more…check my website calendar if you’d like to say hi at an upcoming show or sign up for a class:)!

Congratulations Gina! I look forward to seeing you at HMQS!

Happy Quilting!

Teri

I love this quilt, Serendipity. It is the result of needing to make a new quilt for Mary W. Kerr’s book a few years ago. I had to think inside and outside my box all at the same time. Inside my box is a whole lot of stuff that I use to quilt. Outside my box is a whole world of quilting to explore. And yet, when I sit down to quilt I often pick up a some solid color and start stitching.

serendipity 003

Serendiptity

I quilt for fun.
I quilt for work.
I quilt when I’m cranky.
I quilt when I’m in need.
I quilt for pleasure.
I quilt because it makes others happy.
I quilt to be grateful.
I quilt inside the box.
I quilt outside the box.
I heart quilting so very much.
I need to quilt.

See you later.

Teri

metallic happinessSo last night shortly after arriving home I learned of the passing of Yvonne Porcella, quilter, founder of SAQA, and great joy in the quilting world. The Quilt Show has her TQS Legend show available for viewing and Luana Rubin has a delightful interview with her on the equilter youtube channel. In her honor I’m rejoining SAQA.

Tracy Mooney has started a new website, Sew Supportive. Tracy has an autoimmune which makes sewing & quilting challenging sometimes. Her new website will offer tips and hints and show tools that help sewers who have autoimmune or other physical challenges. Head on over to check out her site.  And she’s now the Roving Reporter for TQS! Congrats Tracy.

lunar eclipse blood moonI am excited for Tuesday, as long as the weather holds, I’ll be teaching “Go with the Flow” wherein I have beginner and intermediate quilters doing different things. Today is my full-on prep day. Once we’ve had breakfast, my sweetie is making french toast and ham steak, I’ll head to the sewing room for a few hours to spend time getting ready for 25 students. I’m really looking forward to this. I love teaching and watching quilters blossom!

I’m doing prep work for HMQS as well. I’m excited to be in Salt Lake City twice in the same month!

Have a great quilterly week!

Teri

 

How Heather got her Hatness Back by Heather Costaras, aka Hat. It all started way back when I read a blog post Heather wrote claiming herself back. Heading back to that fun, vibrant, creative person she left behind as she tried to meet the expectations of others in her life.
It’s very possible that Tracy Mooney shared the original post on fb and when I read it well, you know I responded. I’ve been following Heather. I just love how she found her “self” as an artist. I love how she’s taken the risk to write, draw, paint, create poetry and publish her book. She. Published. Her. Book.

Heather’s artwork is fabulous as she depicts the events that happened, and how she chose to change. The pages are at first vibrant, then monotone as she gives into the “I need to conform to what others say I should be” kind of thinking, then vibrant once again as she finds, nurtures and grows her own self.
staten Island sunset 003What Hat shares in the pages, how she shares it. how she is discovering her self is the way my brain thinks about quilting. We are all unique. We are all drawn to quilt making for some reason or another. We all come to quilting making with a list of “shoulds”, the most prevalent is that a quilt “should” look like this, or a quilt “should” be that. The only thing a quilt “should be” is three layers, a top, batting, and a back. Beyond that, it’s up to you. There are so many techniques to discover, so much thread, so much fabric. Yes, the choices at moments can be overwhelming, however when we begin to choose the things we love our quilterly path will become clear. More than likely it will not be a straight line from here to there. Each quilt, fabric, quilt-maker, technique, sunset, sunrise, autumn leaf, winter snowfall, will become part of who we are, influence our quilt making. As we discover who we are as quilt makers and embrace that we will add to the world of quilt making. We will add our own unique voice. We will add that little something different that makes the whole of quilt making vibrant and real.

Serendiptity

Serendiptity

If you are a quilter who makes quilt tops and just love doing that, great! I know a lot of quilters who love quilting and find quilting tops for others life-giving.
If you are that quilter who loves paper-piecing. Well then paper-piece to your heart’s content.
If you’re the quilter who loves hand stitching bindings to your quilts! Great, let me know I’m happy to hire you because…machine stitching them down makes me giddy.
If you’re the quilter who really enjoys making art, great, go for it. I enjoy your work. You inspire me.
If you’re the quilter who is a leader in our industry, thank you!
If you’re the quilter who finds great joy in…
Keep finding joy in your quilt making.
Please be fully advised that finding the joy also means there will be struggles along the way, because that’s where the joy comes from.

Now, please, go enjoy How Heather got her Hatness Back. Buy it.

And I once wrote on a quilt I made for a friend, “Journaling is a journey to the Heart”, “Quilt Making is a Journey of Heart/Art”

Happy Quilting!

Teri

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