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Friday, June 28, 2013

Free Motion Quilting Progress - June 28, 2013

I've managed to sit down at the sewing machine several times in the last few days, and I feel like I'm making progress on the two log cabin blocks I made to practice free motion quilting on. I've been working on the concentric rings of the traditional block and just finished the final one before the border.

I've seen people doing groups of free motion patterns in an area just merging into one another without putting in dividing lines, and I wondered how that would look in the green ring. I like how this turned out; I like it a lot.

There are a couple of things I learned. Some of the designs look a lot better than others, especially Paisley and the various leaf patterns. That is because I've done quite a bit of Paisley before, and I've done leaf patterns several times before as well. I also noticed that the last group of circles I did were a lot better than the first group, and the various ecohing patterns I did were better as I went along as well.

The next thing I'm going to be practicing is feathers. I've done feathers before, but not recently and not a lot of them.
I've been doing a few things differently as far as the drawing the patterns both to practice them and to make a record of what I'm learning. One is that I've put a small pad next to my computer, and I'm drawing out Leah Day's designs while I'm watching her sew, both on the Craftsy Classes and on her web site.

Although I don't have any of them here on this group of drawings, I've also done that on the DVD classes from Sharon Schamber where she demonstrates her method of doing feathers. Those classes will disappear in a couple of days, so I knew I needed to actually try out her feather methods at least in a drawing so I would understand how she does what she does.

One of the problems with when the Sharon Schamber DVD classes were first available and when the 2012 FMQ Clallenge at SewCalGirl was first published is that I wasn't ready to learn what was being taught when the information became available. I'm ready now. So I'm scrambling with the Sharon Schamber information and I intend to pretend it is January 2012 pretty soon, and go back to the 2012 tutorials.

But one thing that every teacher has pointed out is absolutely true. Practice, practice, practice and you will get better. I'm also beginning to get ideas for how to quilt some of the real projects that I've got rolled up on cardboard tubes and swimming noodles. I rolled them up so they won't develop creases from being folded. I know I want to do a lot more of that method that I used in the green ring and I think it would be just the thing to do in the Coin quilt. And I am wondering what a group of trailing lines of leaves would look like on the whole cloth quilt I've got sandwiched and sitting wrapped around a noodle (the cardboard tubes were not big enough). I think I might find myself getting a lot of practice on stippling if I do the trailing lines of leaves because they will need something that reads as background stippling if I do those.  Need to think about that.

Take care all.


  1. Your FMQ looks great! I especially like the quilting in the green fabric. I think it is so fun to combine designs and just let one flow into the next. Nice job!

  2. The different designs in the green ring transition into each other beautifully.

  3. Whenever I embark on a new FMQ motif, I doodle it first with pen and paper. This way I find where the hesitations or confusion points are. I never thought about doing it as a way of documenting the pattern. It is such a joy to watch your FMQ progress and your confidence grow.

  4. I like the combo of patterns in the green border too. Good luck with your quilting plans, seems you've also gained some confidence along the way too.

  5. Your quilting looking great!

  6. Your FMQ is coming right along - and I like what you did in the green ring! Whoop whoop!!

  7. Stella, I love the quilting in the green square - really nifty work!
    Love, Muv