I can officially say that I am a free motion quilter! Yay! For those reading who are not familiar with quilty terminology (Hi Dad!) free motion is where you remove the option of the sewing machine feeding the fabric through as you stitch, and you control the fabric instead. By moving the quilt around under the needle you control the size and direction of the stitches, allowing intricate designs.
You might remember this quilt top from a couple of weeks ago? It was discarded for a while and I kept looking at it nervously then moving on to another less scary project. I was worried I was going to make a real mess of it. I’d only free motioned using scrappy practice quilt sandwiches.
A couple of glasses for wine and a husband flicking channels between football, cricket and Tour De France (boring!) spurred me into action! I can do this! I WILL do this!
I donned my washing up gloves (great tip from Suz – rubber dish washing gloves work a treat for quilting! Thanks Suz!) and just did it. My hands and wrists ached a bit but I think that was my nervousness and I was probably gripping the fabric with more force than was necessary. I fell into a rhythm and worked out what pedal speed and movement speed was best, and before I knew it, this little quilt was done!
I used scraps for this quilt and backed it with a piece of this pink bug fabric which was given to me ages ago by a relative who was destashing. I used a self binding method and bound the quilt with the backing fabric. I’ve done that on a few quilts now and it’s quick and looks good. I love a good cheat method 😉
You can see my free motion technique there in the bird square. Not bad eh? The stitches are a fairly consistent size.
To learn free motion I did the Free Motion Quilting a Sampler class by Leah Day* from Craftsy. I was about to publish this post then I got an email saying that Craftsy are having a huge sale* – WIN! That exact class is only $10 for the next day or so. Total bargain! The specials are rotating so there will be different classes for sale each day.
This quilt has already hosted several My Little Pony picnics and covers which ever toy is sleeping in the doll’s crib in Anna’s room. Totally cute and nice to see my fabric scraps being put to good use!
*I am a member of the Craftsy affliliate program.