I have been working on some charity quilts. I have a short [long] arm sewing machine. A short arm is the same as a long arm machine but with a much smaller space to quilt in. The nice thing about the machine is I can put a very large quilt on the table, which is 14' long. Then the machine is about the same same size as a regular table top sewing machine. It is fun to work with and so much easier than using a normal machine.
I need a lot of practice to get proficient at it. I have let both Project Linus and Quilts for Kids know that I will work with them on quilting their quilts, as long as they do not expect perfection. Hopefully that will help me learn this craft better.
A few hints on sending a quilt to a long arm quilter:
1. Take top, backing, thread, and batting.
2. Make sure the backing is at least 3 to 5 inches wider on each side than the top.
3. The batting should be equally bigger, too.
4. Do not rush your quilter. They usually have other jobs ahead of yours. Plus that is not the only thing they do.
5. Give feedback to your quilter, so they know what you have done that you like. Don't be overly critical--make it positive feedback.
Have a great deal quilting.