I have had my Avante for two months now. I played on her for probably 6 weeks. Here are some pics if my work. The first shows working on a pantograph. Too rigid for me but I'll try again someday.
This is some of the ideas I saw elsewhere and ideas of my own that I toyed with.
Mire doodling playing with hearts and leaves and vines and stars.
I took my practice quilt off the frame and loaded my first quilt. I started to baste it and hit the leader knocking the basket out that holds the bobbin. I was stuck until I could get someone to come look at it or I could take it to someone. My salesperson was in France so I asked someone in town to help me out. We made arrangements for them to teach us how to re-time the machine. They came over and had us fixed up lickety split.
I loaded the first quilt which I blogged about previously. Here it is again.
I am pleased with the outcome but definitely needed to relearn some things. I took the quilt to Wattafind in Mesquite and Jaqueline helped me figure out what I was doing wrong. She explained some things and suggested some others. Based on my blog I also got suggestions from Glen of Quikts and Dogs on some things to try. With this new knowledge in my head I quilted this.
I am happier with this outcome. Still lots of learning ahead. I have another quilt loaded that I will use the same thread on then will be changing thread colors. That in itself may present a whole new set of learnings. Will report back on my adventures.
When you get ready to put your hands on the machine handles, relax your shoulders and knees and neck and arms. Let your body dance making circles in the air like you are driving the machine forward toward the rising sun. Become like a tree, swaying in the breeze, close your eyes an envision the needle piercing the cloth and the cotton bolls screaming......well, maybe not. But basically relax. don't move too slow or too fast, find a comfortable place and it will become nearly hypnotic.
Smoothness will come as you get more comfortable with the whole idea that you have this incredible machine and you are QUILTING!
And Ray is laughing as you sway back and forth........
Don't let thread changing scare you. Leave it threaded with the old thread and tie the new thread to it and pull it through until you get to the needle. Then you won't be changing anything major other than the color of the thread. Make sure you relax and don't get tight shoulders. Breathe. Play some music and just go with the flow. Practice, practice, practice. You will love it in no time. Good luck!
Great job!! As the previous commenter mentioned, relax your hold on the handles & take a step backward. This as worked for me so I'm not so tensed up.
I'm so jealous :) You are doing great. As they say, if you aren't making mistakes then you aren't learning. I only set my frame up once a year (although last time was 2012 so I'm doomed) and it's always a learning curve. Matching thread and a busy backing will disguise many flaws. Working on charity quilts and printed panels is a great way to practice. Skimping on backing is not worth the aggro I have learned the hard way.
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