Sunday, July 21, 2013

Free Motion Quilting, House Block

Yesterday we explored a little bit of Hawaii. There was the Haleiwa Arts Festival at the North Shore and we went to check it out.  There were 2 artists there that we were very anxious to meet. One artist we have purchased 3 pieces of hers and though she was very thankful, our conversation was very much lacking. We walked away a little disappointed.  The other artist, I do love her work but I want an original piece from her, not a Giclee,  so we were very anxious to meet her.  Well, she was most definitely not friendly and seemed so commercialized that her art really lost it's appeal to us.  Disappointing? Yes but not a wasted day. We had great pleasure in meeting a few artists who were very much in love with what they do and not just looking to be the next Fad.  That is the kind of artist that I find inspiring, who's work I admire even if it's not my style.  Of these artists, I met the sweetest quilting woman.  She dyes her own fabrics with screen printing inks and she has the most magnificent colors.  She makes quilted postcards, blankets, pillow and other whimsical items. She came close to me and said, "There is no wrong way to quilt, everyone has their own style and way of doing things!"  Just what I needed to hear to try a little bit of free motion quilting last night.

I started small and to be honest, i was pretty shaky. If you look closely at my picture you can see where the swirls overlapped on to the house, some stitches were too long and not everything turned into a swirl.  The back side, well that's scary! I think next time I'll just use a bobbin thread that is the same color as the fabric because my white on brown makes every mistake incredibly visible.   I know it's all a learning process, practice to make perfect. I will continue to practice this but in the mean time, I know why they sell quilters gloves now! I love the soft cotton fabrics that I use but they feel like slippery silk as I tried to maneuver this around my machine.

A learning process still...... Until next time, if you have free motion quilting advice, please share! I shall be eternally grateful :)



  1. oh,also you can practice until you find your sweet spot in free motion quilting. it does not come from taking a class but by sitting at the machined and DOing the work. after a set of place mats or a baby quilt you will begin to see small improvement and gain confidence.and pot holders are a great practice place! a famous quilter wrote or said 100 hours but then I lose track! I have PAINTED cotton, the fabric of my life, for over 30 years with these wonderful inks and see no end insight.
    So nice to see young folk that will continue
    the love of handmade from the heart art.
    I enjoyed meeting you at the Hale'iwa art festival over the weekend.
    Aloha, Sonja

  2. Pleasure meeting you too Sonja and I hope to again before we leave the island. I will certainly be practicing. I try to "practice" a little every day but not always possible with the 3 kiddos running around. But when I do get some creating in, I always feel renewed. :) Thank you for leaving a comment, I truly appreciate it.