This week on QUILTsocial I’m delighted to share my quilting experiences using PFAFF’s creative 3.0. This machine has so many features that it’s difficult to narrow down what I want to share with you. But, when in doubt – do a list!
The quilt below was a challenge quilt which was started in 2009 and I finished the top this year! And now with the PFAFF creative 3.0 I hope to finish quilting it in time to share at my local elementary school’s graduation. No pressure, eh?
Top 10 creative 3.0 features
Here’s a list of the top 10 features on the creative 3.0 by PFAFF that I’m enjoying while finally quilting this quilt!
1. LED lights
This is a big one for me because much of my quilting time is after the dinner hour when shadows loom in my quilting space. The generous LED lighting on the creative 3.0 helps me see the full section of my quilt under the needle to help reduce eyestrain and improve accuracy even when I’m tired.
2. Wide harp space
The space to the right of the needle is almost 10″!
Wider than my regular sewing machine’s space, the wide harp on the creative 3.0 allows more of the quilt to lay flat around the needle. It makes it much easier to quilt anything bigger than a baby quilt – I can push and maneuver my quilt top in the space and still have enough room to keep the quilting area smooth and my stitches even. It also helps me to quilt longer because I don’t get as tired from handling the quilt as I’m stitching.
3. Needle down function
Using the needle down function is like having an extra set of hands! When I’m machine quilting, I use the needle down function all the time to help keep my quilt in place when I stop to smooth out the area that I’m quilting.
Plus, with the needle down feature on the creative 3.0, when I lift my foot off the pedal the needle stays in the quilt AND the presser foot lifts just enough to pivot the quilt top. It’s a great feature for when I’m turning corners on the quilt or quilting a curve and want to rotate the quilt after every few stitches.
4. Reverse button
Maybe it’s an obvious feature, but the location of the reverse button on the creative 3.0 is perfect and easy to find when you need it. Plus, if you hold it down for a bit it will stay active and a light will come on to let you know that it’s engaged. Sometimes I like to sew in reverse along an edge or to back up over a length of quilting to get to an inside area to quilt. To disengage reverse stitching you just need to press the button again.
5. Winding the bobbin and the bobbin warning light
This feature – need I say more? I love knowing that my bobbin is low instead of finding out the hard way!
A necessary part of quilting, winding the bobbin is easy on the creative 3.0. Once the bobbin is locked into position, the Color Touch Screen shows a speed control which you can adjust to suit your style – I like to turn it down!
Then I load the bobbin onto the bobbin winding pin and use the start/stop button. You could also use the foot pedal, but I enjoy letting the machine do the work and I find the tension is more consistent than when I control the speed.
6. Speed control
I like to use the speed control all the time! This feature sets the machine speed so that even if I put my foot all the way down on the pedal, the machine will only go as fast as programmed. I find it extremely helpful to be able to give myself a maximum speed not only when I’m quilting, but also when piecing and when I use the decorative built-in stitches.
Adjusting the machine speed also helped me feel more confident when I tried out free motion quilting – which I’ll share later in the week!
7. IDT system
The Integrated Dual Feed (IDT) system on PFAFF machines is one of my favorite features! It helps me get matching points when joining half square triangles together because it feeds both top and bottom fabrics through the machine evenly.
It’s great to use during machine quilting too as it feeds all three layers through at the same time. I have noticed an almost complete elimination of the quilting ‘bump’ in my quilting – that excess build up of the quilt when the layers don’t feed evenly.
The IDT system engages with several of the presser feet and is easy to press into place. The Color Touch Screen on the creative 3.0 will show you an icon to let you know when the chosen stitch and presser foot work with the IDT – you’ll also know because the back of the presser foot will have an opening for the IDT system.
8. Presser feet
The PFAFF creative 3.0 comes with 8 different presser feet. There are 254 built in stitches on the creative 3.0 and a foot that works with each of them!
I personally appreciate the thoughtful markings on the feet that help me line up accurate and consistent quilting lines.
9. Built in Quilting Stitches
The 254 built in stitches are organized into sections to make them easy to find.
I love that there are specific quilting stitches included that I can use on my quilt without having to free motion (but I can do that too!) Here’s the stippling stitch 2.3.5 used in this coping strip I added to my note block.
10. Extension table
It’s not a feature but an accessory and I love it! The extension table works great for me to keep more of my quilt flat and smooth as I’m quilting. With more of my quilt at the same level, I’m spending less of my time moving my quilt around and handling the bulk as it slips and slides off the machine – that can only improve my quilting!
The list of amazing features on the PFAFF creative 3.0 goes on and on, but I’m sure this top 10 will convince you to try out a PFAFF creative 3.0 at your local quilt shop. My quilting is improving and the quilt is getting finished – definite benefits in my book!
I’ll be back tomorrow with more about the creative 3.0.