Sunday, 25 May 2014

thinking while quilting

I've been thinking while quilting, as you do, yes?
On my retro flowers quilt I am doing straight line quilting -no surprises there!
Around each complete flower block & the borders. I have secured the centres of each block with tying, using perle thread. But it looked a bit sparse, you know, like there needed to be something more. So I am now attempting a gentle outline curve around each petal, which is taking a bit of time admitedly, but is a soothing & v. satisfying process.

However, I'm thinking it's time to try & tackle something else off my "things- to- do list"
... free motion quilting.
I did go to a class on FMQ some time ago, but was never happy enough with my results to actually do it on a quilt. Today I took a break from the bigger quilt, & gave it a go once again on some smaller, more manageable blocks. Initially, I selected a decorative stitch on my machine and simply quilted over the seam lines in a blending thread. It was certainly a v. quick, simple way to quilt, a change from straight lines, and does not have to be perfect to create beautiful texture. Then I tried free motion quilting a similar look down the length of the block, some control needed with hands & speed, but still enjoying playing at this point! And finally today, I tried a bit of stippling, but it really ain't easy!  

So what do you prefer to do, straight line or free motion?
How do others actually manage FMQ?
Any tips?

note to self - relax..breathe..drop shoulders
..and try again!

{Update - I have had fun attempting the FMQ. (And have now happily crossed it off my to-do-list!) Today I began with basic free form flowers, plenty of flexibility with that definition I thought! And stippling with straight lines (circuit board style), gotta work, yes? AND I tried to use my needle as a "pencil" ...
... but again, my stitching size was variable, it was difficult reducing irregularities- i.e. the mistakes- and overall, it really did feel like I'm not the one in control!
So now I'm thinking it's back to either hand quilting or straight line machine quilting for me, or getting it done professionally!} 

Linking up with WiP Wednesday later today. 
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

a bit more #6
did u see this?
 Fantastic Folded Quilting-Get It Done Fast!


  1. The retro flowers are looking really great! I feel pretty much the same about free motion as I do about hand quilting-- I love the way it looks, but I just don't like doing it, whereas quilting with the walking foot/dual feed I don't mind at all

    1. thanx for stopping by! Yes I'm inclined to agree, a walking foot anytime... my FMQuilting feels quite "manic" by comparison! L

  2. Keep going!! FMQ really is something that gets soooo much better the more you do it! I also find that my stitch length is better when I go faster!?!? Having said all that - I just posted tonight that I've lost my FMQ-jo a bit...... my bigger quilts are just getting too hard to do and killing my body, so I'm sticking to FMQ with small quilts and cushions :)

    1. thanx so much for the encouragement! I will try going faster next time I have a play with it! L

  3. I am about to quilt a top that I have just finished. I always start with big aspirations about how I would like to do the quilting but end up most times stippling. However this time I am firm in my resolve to try something different. I have seen quilting done by Judi Madsen on her blog called Green Fairy quilts. She does a lot of ruler and grid work. She also happens to do it on a long arm machine which sadly I do not have. Anyway I am going to try and do a simplified version on my sit down domestic machine. I think it is worth persevering with FMQ. Good luck.

  4. thanx for popping by. Yes, I did wonder about getting a bit more creative with my straight line quilting. And I did check out Judi's blog, wow the back is amazing too! L

  5. Good on you for trying something new. I am very much a straight line or hand quilt girl. Of course I may try FMQ once I get the foot my machine requires for it.
    Have a relaxing long weekend.


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