Monday, November 1, 2010

Heather's first time free motion quilting...

This is a bit of a scary reveal for me. I made my Mod Tweet pattern in a brighter, girlier, springy colorway. I used mostly Amy Butler's Love line. I had just gotten my nice sewing machine from my husband, and I wanted to try to free motion quilt.

I figured that each quilt that I did myself was saving $50ish dollars, so each one I do myself I am subtracting from the price of my sewing machine. So as soon as I do 20 quilts, my machine is paid off. You all get the justification right? Please tell me I am not the only one who does this.  So now I need to go out and buy yards and yards of fabric, to make 20 quilts, to free motion quilt myself, to pay off my machine. Right?

I tried just loopy loops. I read this was the easiest way. I did the whole safety pin thing, and just gave it a try. It was super fun! I am not totally happy with it. And I know I need to work on my speed or something, because my tension seems to be off when I free motion (any advice here?0



I am really happy with how it turned out. I can't wait to attempt another one.  Any advice for free motion quilting in the comments would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks to everyone of our followers. You have made this blog really fun and gratifying for me and Megan. We love hearing from you in comments or emails, so keep em coming!
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21 comments:

BitnByAQuiltingBug said...

Beautiful quilt! And...we call that Girl Math. Like if a pair of shoes were $100 and half off, you saved $50, so you have to take that $50 and go buy a bag to match and if the bag is also on sale...well, you see where this is going. More shopping! It definately works when I buy fabric, too!

Elizabeth D. said...

Girl math, that's awesome! I love that! And I love this quilt, Heather, you did a great job. What kind of machine are you using? Generally, I find that if I'm not moving the quilt sandwich through at a consistent speed, my tension gets a bit wonky. Have you tried quilting gloves? I use a cheap pair of Fons & Porter gloves, but for quilts larger than baby size, they really make a difference. Awesome work, I love this pattern, too! :)

Cindy said...

You did a great job on your quilting! You do truly have to jump in and start. Your tension issues could be from going too fast in certain areas. Does it happen when you curve around a loop? Everyone seems to go a little fast there. If it's an all over tension problem, don't hesitate to adjust your upper tension a little. Practice, practice, practice. You'll get better and better!

Happy Cottage Quilter said...

You did a great job! But let me tell you, in our area you can't get anything quiltied for $50. It would START at $125 and go up from there. I figure I had better get practicing, because a LOT of quilters quilt on their sewing machines and they turn out very nicely. Keep at it :-)

The Tulip Patch said...

I have been told by the pros that bobbin tension is key, so check your bobbin tension. I generally raise my top tension a little over that of regular sewing. I use spray baste. I use the needle down feature and stop frequently to reposition my hands so I am holding everything flat with my palms. I also make sure my foot pedal is going faster than my hands. I'm not perfect either, but once you wash it up you can't tell all the imperfections as much. It's forgiving!

Christie, Describe Happy said...

Oh Heather, congrats on your first free motion! I really love the way it looks and to me I think free motion adds more character! Your bird is really adorable too! No advice here, since I am really just starting out too, but I can feel the inspiration coming through!

Sequana said...

Looks really good for a first try. *S*

I see no one else has mentioned turning your stitch length to zero when you FM. Since you are moving the fabric, you don't want to fight against the machine for stitch length. That one hint changed my FM quilting a LOT for the better.

Becky said...

Agree with the consistent speed. Especially around curves. I usually keep a "scrap quilt sandwich around to quilt on for a few minutes each time before I go to the real quilt. Quilting gloves are a must, and keep those shoulders relaxed! Great job! Once you start it's hard to go back to paying someone else (I've never paid less than $100) :-).

Quiltstory said...

I have a good connection with my aunt, this quilt would probably be $50 and she is super good and custom :)

Victoria Paige said...

I think you did great! The color combo is beautiful! Way to go!

scraphappy said...

Three words of advice: practice, practice and more practice. Double Bubble is another fun pattern to try. I call it black olive and it is just a variation on what you have done. Great work on your first quilt. Tension issues seem to get better and worse, don't feel afraid to play with the settings on your machine.

Christine said...

I think your free motion quilting looks great. I'm a beginner too at free motion, it can be intimidating. I just love your quilt!

Missy said...

Good math girl and good quilting. I really like it. The thing that has helped me most with tension is to leave my feed dogs UP. Not down. Makes the world of difference for me. And I only have one more quilt to do for my machine to have paid for itself. Of course, my machine was a lot cheaper. lol

Wendy said...

What a beautiful quilt!

I lack wisdom but I can say that free-motion quilting is something that you will become more comfortable with every time you do it! And don't be afraid to try new things: stars, hearts, butterflies, you name it! Keep going--and good for you for quilting your first quilt!!!

Megan said...

Well I get to see it in real life and since I'm also starting the quilting game I'm impressed. I'm excited to try out all this advice though. Fabulous.

Meg

SisterlyLove said...

Beautiful! It looks great!
Ha! I love the way you think. Girl Math. YES!


Genevieve

Merete said...

Have you tried the Free Motion Quilt Along hosted by A Few Scraps? This is really good and fun and you learn a lot!
Merete

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SewSara said...

great job heather!! i just barely saw this (not sure how i missed it before? i saw it featured on amy's sew and tell before I even saw it here... what the ...?!)

also - i love the "girl math" comment ... SO true! haha.

and i'm also still trying to figure out the tension thing on fm quilting. who am i kidding, i'm still trying to figure out my tension settings, period. i can NEVER remember ... higher number is tighter or looser?!

I want to see this in person!

Gaertegang said...

Ohhh I love that pattern!!! What is it? I am just learning free motion on my new (to me) machine! Keep up the good work...looks great!

Dayna said...

I love your logic! I have three daughters, so I use them as justification. ("I'll have this to pass on to them one day." "This will serve generations!")

This quilt is absolutely gorgeous!