free motion quilting

Ditching a quilt

No, I’m not throwing out a quilt, I’m stitching in the ditch. This was one of the first quilt finishing techniques I learned and quickly gave up when I started free motion quilting. But sometimes you just can’t get away with skipping this step, and that’s the case with my 2014 Block of the Month pattern that I loaded onto the longarm this morning. No, I don’t own a longarm

Craftsy class review: ‘Help! How Do I Quilt It?’

I enrolled in one of Craftsy’s newer quilting classes, “Help! How Do I Quilt It? A Machine Quilting Manual” by Angela Walters last week to get some ideas for quilting my 2014 Block of the Month quilt. I have never quilted anything so large in anything other than an all-over pattern and wanted to do something special for this quilt with 11 different blocks and five borders. I definitely got

Feather fail

I gave feathers a try for the first time on the longarm, and as you can tell by the feathers going in two different directions above, it is safe to say it didn’t go so well. I’ve been taking Free-Motion Quilting with Feathers by Angela Walters on Craftsy. I’ve taken other classes from Angela on Craftsy and she is a very good instructor. She makes feathers look so easy. I

Virtual Show and Tell: Ombre crib quilt

The ombre crib quilt is officially done and gifted. I almost didn’t think I’d get it done in time for the baby shower on Saturday, the quilting powers that be seemed to be against it happening. A friend of mine is have her second baby. We’re from the same town, went to junior high, high school and college together. After school we both ended up staying in the Quad-Cities and

Learning to quilt feathers

Whenever I’ve had an inkling to learn a new quilting skill, I never start small. More often than not I decide I’m going to do it, and it is going to be king sized. That’s how I learned to paper piece, sew curved seams and triangles. Now I’m going to learn how to quilt feathers and I’m going to quilt them on my king-sized maple leaf log cabin quilt. My

Washing machine, the final quilting step

  I feel like a quilt isn’t really complete until it’s been through the wash. Hang in with me for a second those of you who think putting the final stitch in the binding is the time to celebrate. For my batting I go back and forth between Hobbs Heirloom 80/20 cotton-poly blend and Quilters Dream 100 percent cotton. I find both to be soft and have a great drape, even

Loading up the frame

Last summer I spent a lot of time piecing and no time on the longarm, which means I have a backlog of tops in need of finishing in my sewing room closet. So I’ve resumed my monthly trips to Quilting By You in Bettendorf, Iowa, where I can rent time on a longarm machine and finish the quilts myself. It’s not cheap, but it is less expensive than paying someone

Friday progress report: Practicing new free motion quilting patterns

Every time I rent time on the longarm machine at Quilting by You in Bettendorf, the shop owners ask what crazy plans I have. Occasionally I use one overall pattern, with one thread. But most of the time I’m trying out new stitches, techniques and changing thread half-a-dozen times. That was the case this week when I brought my chevron lap quilt in to practice some of the new stitches