Longarm quilting is the new alternative to hand quilting or machine quilting. Hand quilting is very intricate and detailed but takes a very long time to complete. Using a regular sewing machine to quilt a design can be difficult as large sections of material are hard to manipulate. The Quilted Cowgirl can help. Using a longarm sewing machine, your quilt can be beautifully stitched together and ready for use in less time than a traditionally made quilt.
Before your quilt can be sewn together with the longarm, it must be properly prepared. Your quilt top should have an accurate minimum quarter inch seam allowance. The backing will need to have a half inch seam allowance. All seams should be pressed open when possible. When you deliver your quilt top, it should be pressed and on a hanger. Your backing will also need to be neatly pressed and hung. The quilt top, backing, and batting should be square or rectangular. All items must be pressed and must lay flat. Loose threads on your quilt top should be clipped. When you deliver your quilt, do not layer or sandwich the quilt. Please keep in mind that any pressing done at the shop by The Quilted Cowgirl will increase the cost of your quilt. If pressing is necessary for the quilt to be properly loaded onto the quilting machine, a fee of twenty dollars per hour will be applied.
As you continue to work on your quilt and prepare it for longarm quilting, your backing seams should run parallel to the way the quilt will be loaded onto the rollers. Quilt backing and batting will need to have six inches added to each side (twelve inches larger in length and width). For example, if a quilt top is 64 x 90 inches, the backing and batting should be 76 x 102 inches. The maximum width of quilts at The Quilted Cowgirl cannot be more than 116 inches. That is the maximum width of the longarm machine.
Quilt tops ready for quilting should be free of embellishments. Buttons, charms, and pins will interfere with the edge to edge quilting process. Any appliques or embroidery will be stitched over by the machine. Batting is available with an additional charge. It is perfectly allowable to provide your own. The quality of the batting and backing is just as important as the quilt top fabrics. Quality material helps ensure the quilt stitching is even and free of bubbles. For backings, 100 percent cotton is recommended. The Quilted Cowgirl cannot guarantee that all fabric types or thicknesses are compatible with the longarm parameters. In most cases minky, flannel, and fleece are acceptable backings.
When you drop your quilt for longarm quilting, it is important to communicate any deadlines. Documentation of when your quilt is needed is necessary to ensure prompt and reliable service. When asking for quilting to be completed by a certain date, be sure you consider that all quilts are returned untrimmed and unsquared. If you would like the trimming and squaring to be completed in the shop, there is an additional fee for binding preparation. Batting, backing, and binding fabric is also an additional fee. If the batting, backing, and binding fabrics need to be prepared in any way, you will be charged accordingly. The Quilted Cowgirl offers different batting if you choose to purchase from the shop. Your choices include: Hobbs 80/20 Natural, 96 inch width; Hobbs 80/20 Bleached, 108 inch width; Wool batting packaged precut sizes; Warm and Natural; Bamboo batting; Poly Dream Puff at the package price; and Quilters Dream batting at the package price. If you are purchasing batting, the cost of the batting will be added to your quilting charge.
In order to effectively estimate the cost of longarm quilting, you will first need to determine the overall square inches of your quilt. Begin by measuring the length and width of your quilt. Then multiply these two measurements. For example, a quilt that is seventy two inches by sixty inches would equal 4320 square inches. Next multiply the total square inches by the edge to edge quilting price. To calculate binding costs, find the linear inches by adding all four sides together. So, the seventy two by sixty inch quilt would be 264 linear inches - adding seventy two plus seventy two plus sixty plus sixty. Then multiply linear inches by the cost of machine binding for front and back. Changing thread colors adds an additional fee per change.
General pricing for The Quilted Cowgirl services are based on a price per square inch of finished top, all threads included. A specialty quilting design may incur an additional one time charge. Custom quilting begins at a higher price per square inch of finished top, all threads included. Please note this type of quilting is taken only on a limited basis and requires arrangements to be made prior to dropping off a quilt top. A quilt that has a partial custom design starts at moderate price per square inch of finished top with all threads included. A partial custom would be an all over design in the center but different quilting on the borders. The minimum charge for longarm quilting is $40. This would include any quilt top that in not 45 x 45 inches or bigger. Making straight-grain binding is an additional fee plus the cost of fabric if required. Making bias binding is an additional fee plus the cost of required fabric. Machine stitching the binding to the front of the quilt only is an additional charge per linear inch, or machine stitching binding to the front and back of the quilt is also an additional price per linear inch. Hand Stitching the binding to the quilt is a much more labor intensive task with a much higher price per linear inch. If the quilt simply needs the layers basted together for hand sewing or domestic machine quilting, the cost for basting is a minimal price per square inch.
The Quilted Cowgirl enjoys completing quilts and turning dreams into beautiful treasures. The act of quilting is soothing and joyful. She cannot wait to work with you to complete your next quilting project.