Who doesn’t enjoy trying out a new sewing machine? I was thrilled to learn that I was going to be trying out the new Brother NQ900 sewing machine, one of the Q-series line up. It was just like an early Christmas gift when the big box arrived at my front door. Needless to say, it wasn’t long before I had the box unpacked!
This machine comes with many accessories including a walking foot (a real added bonus!), an extra-wide table and a knee-lift attachment that’s conveniently stored in the bottom of the wide table.
The flat bed attachment contains the accessory tray for extra feet, bobbins, seam ripper etc. You remove this to use the free-arm feature and to attach the extra-wide table.
There are 2 manuals – the Operation Manual with instructions for using all the features of the machine and a Quick Reference Guide which shows you the basics so you can get started sewing right away.
It was very easy to thread both the bobbin and the machine using the clear diagrams in the Quick Reference Guide as well as the diagrams that are right on the machine. The automatic needle threader works like a charm!
Of course, I wanted to start using all the fancy stitches and unique features immediately, but I did force myself to go a step at a time and do the basic functions first.
Here’s a great video you can watch to see how to set up the machine.
How To Set Up Your Sewing Machine, Brother Q Series – YouTube
For me, the most important thing when using a new machine is finding the perfect ¼” seam. To test my ¼” seam on the NQ900, I moved the needle position to the center and attached the ¼” foot. I used the guide on the side of the foot for my ¼” seam.
If you position your fabric at the edge of the foot, you’ll get a ⅛” seam.
My favorite method of testing the seam allowance is to cut 3 – 1½” x 4″ strips of fabric. Then I sew them together and measure across the center. The measurement should be 3½”. If the measurement is more than 3½”, the seam allowance is too narrow. If the measurement is less than 3½”, the seam allowance is too wide. You may need to make adjustments either with the needle placement or the position of the fabric when sewing to achieve your perfect ¼” seam.
It’s well worth taking some extra time to find the perfect ¼” seam for your machine because you’ll be able to use it for all of your quilting projects.
Now I’m ready to start my project and have fun with the NQ900. So many interesting stitches and techniques to try!
I decided to make a Fidget Quilt because it would give me the opportunity to try many of the features of this machine. These little quilts are made for those who have Alzheimer’s or dementia and they’re also used by children with developmental challenges. As Alzheimer’s victims progress through the later stages of this terrible disease, one of the last senses they have, and that they can really respond to, is touch. Their hands are restless and anxious, frequently tugging at their blankets or themselves. These quilts, with multiple textures, as well as objects to pull, zippers to zip, and other odds and ends to “fidget” with, help to soothe them and keep their hands occupied. The quilts aren’t very big – not more than 30″ square – so they’re just large enough to fit on someone’s lap.
There are several sites on-line with more information about Fidget Quilts. If you’re interested, you might like to check out these links:
Alzheimer Society of Wellington Waterloo ON
Come back tomorrow to see how I started making my Fidget Quilt on the new Brother NQ900 machine!
This is part 1 of 5 in this series.
Go to part 2: Making a Fidget Quilt with the Brother NQ900 machine