Friday, April 27, 2012

April Challenge

I, too, have had a try with Don Linn's technique demonstrated in the SewCalGal Freemotion Quilting Challenge.
I haven't tried many techniques yet - last time I wanted a specific shape on my quilt I drew around the outside of a piece of cardboard; ok for the simple rounded shape at the time but I can see that it would be totally inadequate for 'fancier' quilting designs.
I am part way through quilting a quilt at the moment so I am using the technique for parts of this.
Here is the design I sketched and traced onto my tulle.
Here are the resulting practise feathers.
I found this method quite easy and straight forward to do. I wonder if I need a finer tulle for more detailed designs, and I'll be interested to try the dark tulle with a silver marker pen on my 'real' quilt. I can see me using it again, as well as exploring other ideas :-)I wrote a bit more on my blog.
Happy free motioning every-one!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

April FMQ Challenge

This month Mr Quilt, Don Linn, was the April expert on SewCalGal's 2012 Freemotion Quilting Challenge.  He demonstrated an interesting method for transferring your quilting design. After being somewhat stumped by my lack of an embroidery hoop, and scratching my head around what I would do as an alternative, Sue made a very timely post - thank you Sue!  I found a design I liked in my Karen McTavish Custom Curves book, enlarged, and mirrored it and using one of my embroidery machine hoops - Sue's excellent idea, I transferred it to netting, then to my runner, and got it quilted today.
on the netting
traced onto the netting, ready to transfer
transferred, ready to quilt
April FMQ challenge
While I don't often transfer a design to my quilt tops, I do like how this one came out, and will be using this method again - at least 3 more times on this runner, for sure!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

April FMQ Challenge with SewCalGal and Don Linn

Alright I gave this a try.   I used a pattern from Custome Curves by Karen McTavish.  It was a bit beyond my skill level, but hey we have to push ourselves from time to time huh?  I used the embroidery hoop from my machine, it's nice and big.    I could only find a teal permanent marker so that's what I had to use, it came up a little light, but I could see it well enough.   Need to get a black one.

Then I traced on the material.  It is really light, but I can see when I'm quilting.  The next time I try this techinque I'll make the lines a bit darker.

And quilted .  Hmm a flash really makes a difference and there is alot of thread on there.  I need more practice following lines.  I did have fun with the fillers though.  I saw on Joan's blog one of her practice pieces had a McTavishing filler with pebbles mixed in, loved it so tried it myself.  Yep, I'll try this technique again and when I'm doing a dense background I'll echo the entire pattern first.  And I'll practice following the line, so hard sometimes :)

Monday, April 16, 2012

April FMQ with SewCalGal and Don Linn

Don Linn's book entitled "Free Motion Machine Quilting" arrived on April 5th and after enjoying his free, online tutorial on SewCalGal's blog and reading his book, then visiting about fifteen quilting blogger's websites to see what they experienced, I felt ready to prepare a baby quilt I am working on with an image of Pooh the Bear.  

Here's my pictoral:

I chose Aurifil 50w for both top and bobbin with a 70/10 needle, but switched to an 80/12 later after breaking the smaller needle (I believe it was due to the heavier flannel in the quilt).
I traced Pooh from a coloring book page, but left out a few of the finer details.  I did stop and start for each eyebrow, the eyes, the nose and his little mouth.  It was worth it!
I borrowed this ironing board idea from quilter's at a recent festival I attended.  This is simply an $8.50 USD wooden folding TV tray/table that I covered with an ironing board cover (cut to fit) and stapled to the underside.  It's portable, lightweight and great to work with!  
Thanks to several other SewCalGal FMQers who advised setting the Sharpie-marked bridal weight tulle with a nylon setting!  This helped alot since this is going to be a present!

I tried light-colored chalk first, but couldn't see it, so I decided to use the blue wash-away marker.  I was tempted to use the Frixion pen, but chickened out at the last moment.

***Isn't Pooh such a happy little guy?  His face brightens my day :-)***

Open-toe quilting foot on my Brother Innovis 4000D (you can get Disney machine embroidery designs for this machine from  Feed dogs down.

Here's the little guy (easier to see with the blue marker since I used ecru colored Aurifil.

Can you see Pooh's little nose and mouth after I washed his face? 

This was a very timely challenge - thank you Darlene of SewCalGal and Don Linn, free-motion machine quilter extraodinaire, a.k.a. Mr. Quilt!

Best wishes for a successful April FMQ to you!  


Sunday, April 15, 2012

April 2012 Don Linn's stencil technique

This is my third attempt using a tulle stencil to transfer a design onto the quilt sandwich.  My first and second quilted designs are posted on my blog.  Instead of an embroidery hoop I made a permanent frame using stationary card board.  I copied Diane at Pine Point Designs who used a card board from a cereal box.
 I printed the butterfly from a colouring webpage, then modified the printed copy slightly to have more continuous lines.
Traced the butterfly onto the tulle using a black permanent sharpie marker.
Ironed the tulle on low heat to set the permanent marker.
Traced the butterfly onto the quilt sandwich using a Sewline cermanic green pencil.
The design transfers easily through the tulle.  I used my Bernina 930 Record sewing machine.
The first picture below is the backside.
This is the front side, the butterfly with the turquoise blue middle on a flower was my second attempt using Don Linn's tulle stencil technique.
I'm not a big fan of marking the quilt top. After a far amount of erasing this is my butterfly, I can still see bits of green pencil in the orange thread.  Getting the marks off the quilt is messy.
 Front side.
This is the tulle stencil.  As you can see, visibility is excellent.  I don't enjoy the chore of removing the markings afterwards.  My preferred method of fmq is to practice the design a gazzillion times on paper then sew it free hand on my fabric.

When I need a precise design,  I'll sew a traced the design onto parchment paper with no thread in the needle.  Then I pin the parchment paper to the quilt and follow the needle punched lines to stitch out the design.  This works quite well, except again I find removing the little bits of parchment paper caught in the stitches a pain you know where.  Perhaps a chalk pumice would work better to mark the quilt top, only I think the chalk would come off too easily. How do you mark your quilt designs?  Is there an easier way to get the marks off?

Happy stitching all!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Giveaway and April 2012 Free-Motion Quilting Challenge

I finished my April FMQ Challenge hosted by SewCalGal.  The goal was to try a new marking technique for our free-motion quilting.  We were supposed to lay a piece of tulle over the pattern and trace it.  Then lay the tulle over the desired quilting material and trace it again.  We were given a specific pattern to use.  Easy enough.  Here’s my piece. 


I then decided it needed a bit more quilting before I could call it finished.  I call it Spanish Sunrise.


I also sandwiched my mother’s quilt.  All ready to go now.  Tomorrow I have an appointment to do my taxes.  Nothing like waiting until the last minute, huh?

A couple months ago, Diane Gaudynski suggested we keep a quilter’s journal.  Everyone who enters The 2012 Free-Motion Quilting Challenge and also posts it here as well, will be entered this month to win a copy of A Quilter’s Notebook.  Prize to be chosen the first week of May by Random Number Generator.  Good luck everyone!


What did you FMQ today?


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

More Feathers

This quilt was suppose to be a Christmas present last year, oops, they got a bottle of wine instead.  This year will be a different story.  Finally got it done and quilted.  Now how's that I have a start on my Christmas sewing :)