Patch work quilts are timeless, are they not? Patch work quilts have been manufactured for hundreds of years, because in essence a patch work quilt is made from off-cuts of cloth. A housewife would make a set of curtains and keep the off-cuts. Then she would create some clothes and store the off-cuts. And so on and so on until she had enough off-cuts to make a quilt, if she needed one for her household.
This old-style of constructing bedspreads or quilts always manages to look traditional and modern at the same time. A specialist variety of this old-style is the American tradition of women embroidering off-cuts of cloth in order to make a quilt as an excuse for a social life. These days there is more money floating about in society and the patches on the quilt can be more personal and more complicated.
There is also a great deal more choice of fabric about than there ever was, so it is not always necessary to embellish a swatch of fabric to make it one's own. Someone might always use blue and white stripes as a signature or green and black squares for example. Most people make a patch work quilt of identical squares, but others will use squares with curved corners and even oblongs, rhombuses, circles and triangles.
Some patch work quilters like to select a theme whilst others are happy to let numerous participants sew in any patch that they like. There are also patch block patterns. The four patch scheme is almost certainly the most common, but the nine patch scheme is also fairly common.
A four patch scheme is achieved by dividing the quilt into equal squares and then bisecting each square across the top and down the sides. Each block of four squares can then have a theme. The same goes for a nine patch scheme, but divide each large block on the quilt with two vertical and two horizontal lines making nine small squares in every big square.
You can design your quilt pattern on graph paper if you like. To do this, first work out how big you want your quilt to be. Then draw that on graph paper and divide your graph into the number of that you want. Learners might be better off using larger squares in the beginning and then increasing the number of squares by reducing their size.
Start with a four block scheme and move up to a nine and then twelve block scheme. You can repeat the swatches of fabric at regular or irregular intervals and you can modify the orientation of the swatch in your patch work quilt too. A patch work quilt can be well planned or completely random. Well planned quilts can be quite dazzling, but even random quilts look great.
Sewing machines today are very well-built machines. They will usually last for years without much trouble. When trouble does arise, only a few sewing machine parts will require replacement. Case in point is the myriad of antique sewing machines that are still in use today. Although they are still capable of doing the job, replacement sewing machine parts are becoming harder to come by, especially if the original manufacturer is no longer in business. In most cases, the original manufacturer is the best source for sewing machine parts. However, there are now companies whose specialty is making sewing machine parts. A good machine will last a lifetime.
Sewing machines are a mixture of old-time form and durability with modern electronics. Most parts need only a regular schedule of maintenance. Some parts will require replacement more frequently, such as belts, needles, and light bulbs. These smaller parts are easily replaced and can be found at many sewing-oriented retailers. When you buy replacement parts, you can either buy them from the original manufacturer or buy universal parts which fit many brands of sewing machines.
Some replacement parts are not as easy to find or replace. For example, bobbins, feet attachments, and needle plates can only be found from a sewing machine shop or dealer. To ensure that the replacement parts fit your particular sewing machine, the dealer or sewing machine shop will need the specific model and part number.
Like an automobile, many sewing machines can be retrofitted with after-market parts to add to its functionality. New sewing machines usually come with basic accessories, such as a zipper foot or a pressure foot. Specialized jobs such as quilting or ruffles can be done by purchasing an add-on attachment from the dealer. When buying after-market parts, make sure that the accessories are made to fit your particular make and model of sewing machine. Typically, after-market attachments made by a manufacturer are limited to their specific brand.
If you have one of the more popular brands, such as Singer, you can find dedicated suppliers or repair shops whose sole function is to sell and service that one particular brand. They can also help you to maintain your sewing machine. Maintenance is key to a long lasting machine. You can search the internet for suppliers of parts on the famous name brand and you will be surprised at the fact that there still are people who sevice the old machines.
Everyone who enjoys the art of sewing wonders about graduating onto more heavy duty sewing machines. The reason for this is that a more heavy duty machine offers a lot more than normal sewing machines and most sewing hobbyists begin with a simple sewing machine designed for beginners. If you have been sewing for a while with a simple machine then it is very likely that you have been wondering whether you need a more advanced sewing machine. The answer to such a question depends upon your specific level of skill and figuring this out can be a little confusing. Whether you are sure or not about your needs, you should consider the following points before evaluating sewing machines.
1. Seek out second and third opinions:
The first thing with deciding whether you need a heavy duty sewing machine or not is to be objective about the decision. Even if you can be objective about the situation, you should test your objectivity with other people who are into sewing either as a hobby or as a profession. These people would be able to give you an unbiased assessment pertaining to your need for an advanced sewing machine. Discussing sewing machines with these people would ensure that you do not waste your money.
2. The heavier the better, budget permitting:
However, while it is good to save money, it would also be beneficial for a sewing aficionado to have as heavy a sewing machine as is possible. The logic behind this line of thinking is that if you have a sewing machine available to you, you would be more willing to try new sewing techniques and methods. Resultantly, your sewing horizons will expand more readily. Therefore, it is usually better that you go for one of these heavy duty machines i.e. if your financial condition allows you this freedom.
3. Go through sewing machine media:
Every industry has its devoted media and every activity has some dedicated magazine to it. In sewing, there are multiple sewing machine testing and reviewing magazines. These magazines are a treasure trove of information and you should go through them in detail because they are written by people who are experienced in sewing. Furthermore, considering the recommendations given in these magazines about heavy duty sewing machines should also be paid a lot of attention to.
4. Study the machines you are considering in extreme detail:
Finally, it is important that, before you even decide to buy an advanced sewing machine, you evaluate what it means to possess an advanced sewing machine. For this, you should go through all the features of all the types of heavy duty sewing machines available in the market. This would not only facilitate your understanding of the capabilities of an advanced sewing machine but also help you make a more informed choice in the end.
All of the above mentioned points, if followed, would give you a clear idea on whether you really need sewing machines or not.