Updated at: 31-05-2022 - By: Sienna Lewis

When someone asks what a long-arm sewing machine is, the answer is simple: it has a longer throat. Below, we’ll go into more depth about how it compares to a regular sewing machine. You’ll also learn how to get the most out of a long arm sewing machine.

Let me know if you have any further questions about free arm sewing machines. If you’re interested in learning more about that particular model of sewing machine, check out our article or simply browse our blog.

What Is A Long Arm Sewing Machine Used For?

Because of the length of the sewing machine head, a long arm sewing machine by definition is a huge equipment. To help you attach layers of fabric, the machine contains rollers that you may roll over the cloth. The long arm sewing machine’s head moves instead of the fabric, allowing the user to quilt large projects without having to shift the cloth.

What is a Longarm and When Should You Buy One? - The Seasoned Homemaker®

Longarm computerized sewing machines are available on the market. In order to speed up the process of making a large-scale quilt, you can create designs and the computer will direct the machine’s head. As a result, regardless of the project’s complexity, you can save time and work.

How does a long arm sewing machine work?

A long arm sewing machine can also be used to make quilts because of its long arm. Afterwards, it stitches the top, batting, and back layers all at once. To quilt, the cloth will remain in place as the head rolls in both vertical and horizontal directions. Using a computerized long arm quilting machine, you may have the machine do the design for you.

Longarm sewing machine vs traditional sewing machine

Longarm sewing machine

  • greater distance between needle and body of machine
  • The larger the machine’s throat, the easier it will be to feed the quilt through the machine.
  • a motor of industrial quality allowing it to function more quickly while keeping the fabric layers in the correct position

Traditional sewing machine

  • To make quilting more difficult, a regular-sized throat space is needed.
  • Rearranging the project and trying out different sewing positions are necessary for quilting.
  • It can be difficult to sew through numerous layers of fabric with a slow machine.

What Is A Long Arm Sewing Machine Used For?

Pantograph design

A long arm sewing machine can easily sew a pantograph design. If necessary, the machine’s head may trace the intricate design and apply it repeatedly throughout the quilt top. The most frequent method of using a long arm machine is to employ a pantograph.

Custom design

Allows for more complicated designs to be made using a long arm sewing machine It’s understandable that it’ll take longer, especially if you want to create a variety of block designs. As a result, utilizing a long arm sewing machine instead of a conventional one can make the task less tedious because you won’t have to move the oversized item about as much.

Longarm Quilting for Beginners Part 2: Loading a Frame - WeAllSew

What is a Longarm and When Should You Buy One?

A large hand-quilting frame was set up in the den of our colonial ranch in the 1970s, where my mother worked on a variety of handiwork. In the shade of a gold swag lamp, my mother and great aunt used to hand-stitch little baby quilts. They stitched in sections, using rollers to move the quilt forward as they finished it. A longarm resembles this in certain ways.

A longarm is a machine that can be used to quilt a specific area before moving on to the next section of the quilt.

Of course, a lot has changed in the world of quilting since the 1970s. Machines with much larger frames are being used to quilt. These quilting machines and frames are equipped with the most advanced technology, giving quilters the ability to sew like never before.

How Do You Use A Long Arm Machine?

  1. See whether there is a user’s manual for the long arm machine you have.
  2. If this is your first time using a long arm machine, start with free motion quilting.
  3. Using the poles on the table, attach the quilt layers to the throat of the machine
  4. Using a snap system or pins, secure the rollers to the machine and keep the fabric in place.
  5. Make your design by moving the machine over the material, although in other models, the arm does it for you.

The pattern will be excellent if you adjust the stitches correctly.

How Do I Choose A Long Arm Quilting Machine?

How big is your available workspace area?

Determine how much room you need for the long arm machine in your work area. There are a variety of workspace sizes to choose from when it comes to long arm machines. Avoid overcrowding your room by imagining where you’ll put it before you buy it.

What projects will you be doing?

A machine that can handle the kind of quilts you plan to make, no matter how complicated they may be, is more important than its size. For example, a computerized design might be useful for some designs. Additionally, the machine should produce your quilts on schedule, especially for a busy business.

What is the table quality of the long arm machine?

More important than the project’s size is the machine’s ability to handle the kind of quilts you plan to make, no matter how complicated they may be. A computerized design might be useful in certain cases. For a busy business, the machine should also make your quilts on time.

Longarm Quilting for Beginners, Part 1: Using on a Frame - WeAllSew

Is there anything else I can do for you? Please take a look at our buying guide for sewing machines.

What Are the Benefits of Longarm Quilting?

What’s the point of a longarm? Why not go back to the basics? You can, of course, use a traditional machine to quilt. You may not be able to work with such a large piece on your home sewing machine if you’re stitching a large quilt.

Another huge benefit of a longarm machine is the significant amount of time it saves. A longarm machine eliminates the need for basting because all three layers are loaded directly onto the machine. When it comes to basting, longarm quilting is an excellent option.

Many people, of course, are opposed to the use of longarm devices. There are others who like to do things an old-fashioned manner or who enjoy the hands-on approach to quilting themselves. There are many who believe that it doesn’t truly save time, the machines are too expensive to hire, and they can be too difficult to operate.

Whatever the case, it’s impossible to deny that longarm quilting has many advantages, especially if you’re short on time. Renting a longarm machine or sending your quilt to a professional may be the best option if you don’t have the confidence or patience to quilt on your home machine.


That’s all there is to it! If you’ve ever wanted to make a large quilt, but have no idea what a long-arm sewing machine is, you’ve come to the right place! Custom designs and pantograph designs are ideal for quilting enterprises using this machine.

To that end, we’d like to thank you for reading. Also, feel free to ask any additional questions in the comments section below.

Longarm quilting is a term used to describe a specific technique. Use of a Longarm Machine Has Many Advantages.