My grandmother was a quilter as well as my husband's mother. We both remember them putting on quilts as soon as the harvest was over and they would work on them all winter long, finishing just in time for the spring work to begin.
I have always loved homemade quilts, but never had the patience to work on them. If I had put one on the old fashion frames, it would have taken me a life time to finish.
Several years ago my friend, Suzanne talked me into taking a quilting class, which I did, just so she wouldn't have to go alone. Was I hooked!!!! I loved making the tops and putting them together. My problem was how would I quilt them?
For Christmas and my birthdays the last few years I half joking and half seriously told my husband that I wanted a long arm quilting machine. I didn't think it would happen, but there was always hope.
I looked at them on line and checked them all out for over two years. I always went back to the Handi Quilter. I found a store in Broomfield that sold them so I went and checked them out. As soon as I saw the HQ run I knew that is the one I wanted.
For Christmas 2009 I made my husband a quilt and two of our grandchildren quillows. A friend of mine had a long arm, which was not a HQ. I had fun running it and seeing what I had done, but I knew this was not the machine for me.
Just after Christmas I went to a quilt fabric store to buy some fabric for my next project with two of my friends. On our way home I asked them if they would mind stopping at the store that sold the long arm I wanted. I was told they had a new HQ, a HQ18 Advante, that would be on sale for the same price as the HQ Sixteen until the end of the year. I got the figures, went home and told my husband. To my surprise he told me to go order it. So I did, Merry Christmas!
Now the work began. We needed to put it in the basement to have room but we also needed to clean it out. My mom had died the year before and I had a lot of her things in my basement. Knowing that this would make me get rid of a lot of her memories, it took us several months and many tears, but we got it done.
My husband travels a lot for work and it was on one of his trips that Bob came to set up my machine. As soon as Dave got home I took him down stairs to show off my machine and what it could do. As he was standing there looking at it running he said, "My mom would of sold her husband for a machine like this." Every time I use the machine I learn something new. As my husband is retiring in a few months I hope to become proficient so I well be able to bring in some extra money.
A group of us are currently making quilts for the Women's Homeless shelter in Arvada and when the tops are done they will be quilted on the HQ.
- Coral Lee Prickett
I own the following HQ machines: HQ Pro-Stitcher, HQ18 Avante