Quilting Terminology…in Charisma Terms

Categories: UncategorizedBy Published On: March 30, 201255.9 min read1229 words5 Comments on Quilting Terminology…in Charisma Terms

OK So Kristi asked what the difference between custom quilting and heirloom quilting is…and this is actually a question that comes up pretty regularly along with computer guided quilting verses freehand….ect.

OK So if you look at my pricing page…there is a few different options.

All over quilting…this is usually the most affordable ( cheapest..LOL)…this is one design all over the quilt….this could be computer, pantographs, groovy boards…or myown freehand design.

I don’t own a computer for my machine..so I don’t do those…I have never actually used a pantograph other than to teach someone else how to do them for themselves… but technically speaking…this is usually the term used for those type of designs.

I also offer an all over design with a different border option….

Maybe you want a feathered border…but an all-over design in the center of your quilt..a bit dressier  ….

Then there is custom quilting. This is 90% of my work. Custom quilting is when you look at each idividual area of the quilt and compliment it accordingly….if I do block work in a sampler, a different design in the sashing and different designs in the borders..that is custom quilting.  The designs can be simple designs…but that each different area of the quilt get it’s own unique design is custom quilting.

Heirloom quilting is stepping it up a notch. Heirloom quilting takes time….and it falls under the heading of show quilting..I usually bid these jobs out after I see the quilt and then discuss design options and price. Heirloom quilting is just what it states..something you want to make a keep sake …so there is ruler work…like crosshatching & Straight lines, beautiful feathers, pebbling….There is something very specific to the look of heirloom quilting…I don’t know that I can explain it….it makes me think of very traditional and classic quilts..but you can also make heirloom modern……but it is basically a style of quilting that you want to treasure and keep. We probably don’t use these quilts at the football stadium..LOL. But basically  it takes more time and work than custom quilting..it is custom quilting just more.

I am a freehand quilter…freehand quilters don’t use computers….nothing I make will be absolutely perfect…cause I am not God…so no perfection. I am also not programable…so there will be flaws…I do however use tricks and gadgets to get a desired affect…such as rulers, marking pens, (rarely) stencils and that sort of a thing. But I have to say I think people think I use tools more than I do….most of my work is honestly freehand right from my brain to my hand.I am always willing to share what or how I did something ..so please feel free to ask.

Which brings me to another discussion…I appreciate all forms of art..especially in quilting. I love hand quilted quilts..I love machine quilted quilts..I even like some tied quilts….I don’t think anyone is “Cheating” by quilting any way….However…when there is a computer quilter who doesn’t freely say they programmed their computer to quilt a quilt and they take all the credit for everything..I kind of have an issue with that.  Yes there is a learning curve and everything to a computer…and by all means use the technology..just be honest and say how you accomplished it. It’s not fair to so many people. Some people who don’t quilt don’t recognise what is computer guided and not computer guided.

I had a discussion in Seattle with a group of gals who had gammils with their statler stitchers….we were discussing business..of course they thought I was young (and dumb I think) ….I didn’t share much about myself….or say anything about business. I am quiet in crowds..LOl and I just like to listen and absorb. I answered questions when they asked…..but I asked them how come they chose the route of computer guided quilting…one of them flat out said “Because I am lazy and I don’t want to take the time to practice and learn how to quilt.” another said “Because I can get more quiting done with a  computer and get more quilts out the door” ..Now mind you this is just a few ladies…I know we all come to our decisions in different ways.

But I have to say I left that conversation sad for those ladies. Why? They aren’t doing something they LOVE. They are making a job of quilting. Making a job of something you LOVE is so much better. I don’t ever want to lose my passion…I honestly fall in love with my quilts and try to compliment as they come in and let them speak to me….when they come to life…my “job” is done. I don’t want to be a quiter that just says “choose a design..any design” and be done with it. Of course some quilts do just want that…and budget also wants that..I understand. But even when I do an allover design I try to make it fit the quilt.  As several of you know…especially ones that I have worked with several times…after I have studied a quilt for a few weeks and I come to you and say…”All I see is an all over swirl” I always feel guilty about that…Like it pains me to think all I see is an all over design..because my brain ( or heart) doesn’t ever immediatly WANT to do an all over design.  I will exhaust myself with every possibility before giving into that..LOL. I am always glad when I do because it is usually the best option. I am not driven by money …or fame. I am mostly heart driven.  I love that feeling of mastering a design that I wanted to try..or a design i saw on the side of building and translated it into a quilting deisgn..there is a sense of accomplishment …and finding inspiration in unexpected places….creates more passion for the art. It creates wonder.

I am not actually a computer “hater” I just don’t use one…..I have thought about buying one several times..and I may…but probably not for me to use….I think my boys could use a computer and offer up what other people on the market are offering ….just as well. They are technology savvy and know the basics of sewing/quilting. I just need to know how serious my boys are before I make such an investment..because it could become a fulltime job for them…but Carl will need a way to pay for college ….and I would love to have him home while he is in college…working with me. Art is a passion of his…so for now it would be a “job” for him. however, I think it could build to something more for him. I think to be involved with quilting in any form is to fall in love with it….but of course that is just my own humble opinion.

Anyhow..I got off trail a bit there..I hope that clears up some things…






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  1. Jane March 30, 2012 at 12:25 pm - Reply

    **Applause Applause** You put this so well and I agree with your views 100%! Bravo Charisma and very well said.

  2. Kathy March 30, 2012 at 3:56 pm - Reply

    What a great explanation of the different types of quilting. Thank you! I think you are very talented and I believe that your love of quilting truly translates to the finished product.

  3. lindy March 31, 2012 at 11:13 am - Reply

    i couldent agree with you more about commputer quilting im learning (slowly) how to free hand quilt and its quite a bit off work but its very rewarding. while i think computer quilting looks nice i dont think it has any individuality and most quilts cry out for that.

  4. Kristi April 1, 2012 at 7:50 am - Reply

    Thank you so much for clearing that up for me! I too agree with you in regards to computer quilting. To me the whole point of quilting is to experience and share your creativity. I’ve been following your work for a couple of years now and told my husband that I plan on sending my heirloom quilts to you! It’s only taken me about 10 years to get around to making one that I would consider heirloom, but hey, I needed to practice! LOL

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