January Free Motion Quilting Challenge

Thanks to all of you who wished me well on my little nose procedure this morning.  I'm happy to say that it was not as bad as the first time around.  The little spot in question was much smaller and I caught it much earlier.  That meant it didn't take as long, and as far as I can tell this early on, it doesn't look as if there is as much swelling.  It is still rather uncomfortable, however.  So far, I'm only using Tylenol, but I'm thinking seriously about going for something stronger.  I want to sew, however, and so I'm trying to keep my wits about me.  It wouldn't do for me to be sewing over my fingers or cutting myself, now would it?

Which brings me to this:

I'll admit to putting this off a little.  Sometimes when I'm doing something that I anticipate will be challenging, I have to work my spirit into it.  I have two doll quilts that need quilting, however, and I want to work on those too.  It's a bit of an operation to set up my sewing machine for free motion quilting, and so I wanted to follow the FMQ Challenge piece with a doll quilt.  And then another doll quilt after that.  It saves me from setting up and breaking the whole thing down over and over again. 

My machine is a Bernina 440QE, which I love.  It has the Bernina Stitch Regulator.  I think it's helpful, although I know some people would disagree.  It's a personal preference, I think.  I happen to prefer it.  Also, I sprung for the extension table for my machine so that I would have a nice level sewing surface.  Ordinarily, my machine sits on a desktop, and so I don't have much area to work with if I don't use the extension table.  Also, I absolutely love the Queen Supreme Slider.  I find it very helpful, and again, some people think the Supreme Slider is useless.  I'm not making any recommendations here.  I'm just telling you what works best for me.

So how did I do?

Not too bad, I think.  There were a few places where I painted myself into a corner.  Also, I didn't leave myself enough room to travel . . . or sometimes I felt I was having to travel too far.  A few of my leaves aren't exactly heart-shaped, but it's not too bad. 

I appreciated the video tutorial because I noticed that she paused each time she was ready to start a new leaf.  When I'm quilting, I tend to think I should keep moving.  After seeing the tutorial, I realized it was perfectly okay to stop and get my bearings before continuing.  This isn't something I'd given much thought.  It was just something I noticed while watching her.

So now I'm off to start on my doll quilts.  I have some ideas how I want to quilt them, but I'll need to get in a practice run first.  Also, I have to make my quilt sandwiches, which I've come to believe is the one part of quilting that I really despise.  Once that part is done, I can stitch to my heart's content.  My heart isn't particularly content while I'm trying to get the fabric smoothed out over the batting both top and bottom.

10 comments from clever and witty friends:

Sarah said...

I'm with you on my least fav part of quilting - the sandwiching. I have switched to spray basting with 505 and it's made a huge difference for me. Your leaves look great! I learned the "pause" trick in someone elses video a few years ago and suprisingly it makes a huge difference. Who would have thought? Now I need to do my FMQ sample...

Loretta said...

Your leaves look pretty on this Barbara. Hope you feel better soon...Pain is ~not~ good! Hugs

rubyslipperz said...

Your machine quilting is impressive! I SHOULD be doing this challenge...but, I've not worked "my spirit" into it yet =)

I have a long-arm. But, there are definitely things that you would want to FMQ on a domestic machine.
I have a Bernina with a BSR and I LUV it...I've tried doing quilting on a machine that didnt' have one and I couldn't get my un-coordinated body to make things work in sync.

thanks for sharing...it's helping me to get the nerve to maybe try the challenge.


Teresa in Music City said...

So glad you are doing well so far! Will continue sending "get well" prayers your way!!!

Your FMQ leaves are really very good! I see some lovely hearts in there. Keep up the practice and you are going to be good at this!

My biggest problem too is anticipating where I need to go, so maybe I need to slow down and pause at each change in motif? I haven't watched the video yet - this week has been crazy! Count me in the "despising sandwiching" camp! I love to quilt but I put off sandwiching for way too long just because I hate it.

Needled Mom said...

I think it looks great! I still haven't attempted mine yet. ;(

sew.darn.quilt said...

Lookin' great!!


quiltzyx said...

Your FMQ looks really good to me!

Looking forward to the DQs now....

Sue Daurio said...

I think it looks great, and it will only get better with practice!! Get some rest, don't over do it.

LethargicLass said...

As someone who hasn't done FMQ but has looked at a lot of it, I think it is pretty darn good :)

Denise :) said...

Barbara, I'm so glad you pointed the 'pause' out -- I think I should continuously be moving, too. Your leaves look terrific! I've been ... procrastinating on mine. Maybe Monday. LOL! Glad your procedure went well. :)