Sunday, April 22, 2018

Back in Business!

This week was hectic! I met my daughter in Denver for a day. Her university sent her out to recruit at an accepted students reception, but she needed to be back in time for her sorority's formal last night. She is in the pink dress--which we found shopping on Friday. She was going for the Barbie look which she definitely nailed! It was a delight to see her in action at the reception and spend time with her--she will be home in three weeks for a few weeks before she goes back to school for a paid research position the rest of the summer. Then, she is off to London for her semester abroad in the fall...she is living the life!
I used the time before she arrived in Denver to go look at sewing machines. I decided to replace my worn out machine with a Pfaff Quilt Expression 4.2. It has some new features my other Pfaff did not including:
a built in thread cutter
10 inches of throat space--it is much larger
more speed
large foot pedal
9 mm wide stitches
automatic tie off
automatic presser foot lift
electronic knee lift
automatic thread tension
As I explained to my daughter, I went from a VW to a BMW. It is a $2600 machine, but they were offering a special this week, so it was $1950. I can upgrade it within a year for the Janome if I decide to. That decision will probably hinge on the local service availability--there is a new Pfaff dealer in Grand Junction, but I am not sure it will last.
 I quilted my School of Fish today on my new machine. I have to say, I used so much less thread because of the thread cutter and there will not be thread tails all over the house anymore!
The wavy stitch is fabulous and the dual feed made this a breeze. This quilt is almost 55 inches square, but with all that throat space there wasn't any rolling or wrestling it through the machine.
I just put the binding on and plan on working on that this evening. 
As most of you know, I love to bind and I bind for both my local quilt shop and a friend--we are trading long arm quilting and a 20% shop discount. A lady was referred to me for my binding services, she has a queen sized quilt she needs bound by June. I don't have any idea how much to charge. I did a little internet research and it sounds like $80 is the going rate to attach by machine and hand sew the binding down. That seems pretty steep to me--I was thinking of telling her $50. What do you all think? The money I make can go toward my machine purchase...I spent so much in Denver my credit card company contacted me to see if it had been stolen! OMG!



  1. Congrats on the new machine. The fish quilt came out beautifully!

  2. I'm glad you found a machine you like and are back in business. I was told that the larger foot pedal is meant for use with both feet. I still can't use both. Old habits die hard.

  3. The girls look great. Sounds like your daughter is doing well and has a lot planned for the next few months.
    So pleased you found a machine you are happy with. great features. Doesn't the wider throat make a huge difference when dealing with larger quilts?
    I hope you continue to enjoy it.
    Love how the fish quilt looks.
    Not sure about binding prices but you need to charge what you are comfortable with. As you say, it all goes to paying for the new machine.

  4. My LQS charges 15 cents per inch for binding. Does that help? Then you don't have to figure it out for each person, but have a set rate no matter the size of the project. Your time is valuable, even when you do something you enjoy. A78mandel at yahoo dot com

  5. Definitely charge a per inch rate. I charge 10¢ an inch for machine stitching on both sides. You also need to take in account what the going rate is. Check some of the long armer's web sites in your area to see what they charge. Congrats on the new machine and the wonderful finish for the fishies. (Come on spell check I know what I want to write....grrr.)

  6. Glad you found a machine you're comfortable with. I bet you like it so much you won't want to upgrade in a year. Sounds like your daughter is making the most of her college years.

  7. Yippee for new machines!! I know the feeling. Enjoy!

  8. Yay for the new machine and saving thread. and yay for your daughter! sounds like she is enjoying life!

  9. Throwing my thoughts into the hat: $.10 or $.15 an inch sounds like you might as well work for free and count it as volunteer work lol. Maybe I'm not doing the math the right way, but I would tend to go with the price you are thinking about now that you have done some research. I am concerned that women may continue to underprice their work. If your potential customer is willing to pay your idea of $50, you are still under what you are seeing that others are charging. Good luck with all of this!

  10. I agree with many others - charge by the inch so when she comes back with a second quilt, you'll both be comfortable with the price. I enjoy binding but I'm not the fastest. It would probably take me at least 6 hours (if the fabric was loose vs. a tight batik) and at $50, that's less than $10 per hour. Go with your gut. Congratulations on the new machine!

  11. Congratulations on your new sewing machine! Sounds like a winner to me. Your quilting looks fabulous. Your stitch selection happens to be my go to quilting stitch. I happen to have a Bernina, but you have opened my eyes to think about other machines in the future. Your daughter is gorgeous, BTW. Sometimes I wish I was back living the college life. Seems like even more fun nowadays...

  12. Glad you found a machine you're comfortable with. I bet you like it so much you won't want to upgrade in a year. Sounds like your daughter is making the most of her college years.
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  13. What at darling girl and a cute dress! So glad you got to spend time with her!!! She is living the life. I want a semester in London! LOL
    Congrats on the new machine, I hope it turns out to be a keeper!

  14. Exciting times for your daughter. Wish her all the best. Enjoy your new machine!

  15. Congrats on the new machine! This is what I sew with and I like it. Your daughter look beautiful, and the young kids are living the dream!

  16. Congratulations on your new machine!! Your quilting looks fabulous. It's my favorite stitch to quilt with. =)

  17. I charge 10¢ an inch for machine stitching on both sides.
    Genting Crown

  18. Your fish quilt is amazing!
    Congrats on a new machine... I hope you like it!
    What about charging minimum wage and keep track of the time it takes you to complete? So if it's around $10/hour and it takes you 5 hours to complete, that would be $50.

  19. wow, wow, wow!!
    so, so good to see our children doing so well!
    lucky you for spending time together!
    thanks for sharing about your new machine purchase...the price sounds great!

    thanks for linking up!

  20. Wonderful to get a new machine! You and your daughter look amazing! And so does your fish quilt!

  21. Hi Tanya,
    Oh, that school of fish quilt is SO CUTE!! And the new sewing machine - yay! Isn't that extra inch or two just the biggest deal?! Non-quilters just don't get it but it makes such a difference. Your daughter and her friend look so cute! I'm glad you got to see her as well as find a new machine.
    ~smile~ Roseanne

  22. Your machine sounds pretty awesome! There’s a possibility you might fall in love with it and not end up trading up.

    In regards to binding, my friend charges $.15 an inch.

  23. Glad you found a machine :) That was also one of the things I noticed right away, less thread use! Enjoy!

  24. Yippee for new machines!! I know the feeling. Enjoy!


  25. Congrats on the new machine and your fish quilt is really cute!

  26. Congrats on your machine! I love the quilt, that is just too cute!

  27. Tanya, my Expression 3.0 is having a computer meltdown, which has me worried. I'm taking it in for service tomorrow and I'm wondering how you're liking your 4.2. From your description it sounds like it has everything I could want. What do you think of it, after quilting with it for a little while?


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