The final row is 'choose your own adventure'. I asked Jane of WantItNeedItQuilt and QuiltJane to quilt her own adventure for us and share some wisdom. Now for those of you in Australia, Jane gets Moda pre-cuts as well as some others and sells them at VERY good rates for those of us used to paying through the nose. Now you Americans may sneer at our prices, but very occasionally, Moda precuts get released overseas before they are realeased in the US. So there. :P (We discovered this when Jane and I nearly caused QuiltGate with some Good Fortune fabric last year... ) Anyway, enough from me, over to Miss Jane and her quilt squiggles...
Laura has invited me here today as part of the FMQAL to share with you all two 'anything goes' designs. The beauty of quilting is that is it very similar to painting.
- You choose your canvas - Fabric
- You choose your paintbrush - thread weight
- You choose your paints - Thread colour (s)
- You choose your subject - pattern
and like any great artist - Practise, Practise, Practise. You can never stop practising. I will certainly be practising for the rest of my life.
To test designs, I sandwich test fabric, wadding and backing, mark blocks and have a play. This is an example of a quick sample piece which with I tried out different pattens and concepts.
Look at your quilting patterns from different angles. A quilt does not lay flat. Sometimes, patterns can look different depending on the position of the light.
|Echo, loops, waves, flowers, crosshatch, geometric spirals|
For these examples I chose a 40wt, polyester thread in an yellow/orange colour to emphasise the quilting. Be creative with the thread choice. Contrasting colours add a whole new depth to a block and polyester threads have a beautiful sheen which, in the image below add to the impact of the flower centres, where multiple crossovers occur.
|40wt for top and 50wt polyester So Fine in bobbin|
|Unlike my tester, if multiple stitch crossovers occur, make sure they are evenly spread over the|
block as they will be the focal point of piece at first glance.
If you are using a variegated thread, test first.
Examine your pattern and decide whether variegated thread is the best choice. Variegated thread is thread that has colour change in increments. These increments of colour can be blended and tonal with little variation or multiple coloured. The increments can range from 1" to many inches.
How will this affect the pattern? Well, if you used a large increment and dramatically tonal thread, the pattern would have clusters of dark, medium and light areas. Is this the look you want?
If you use a 1" increment of subtle colour change then the pattern will have subtle highlights throughout. I must admit, I am not a frequent user of variegated threads. I reserve it for more 'arty' quilts.
The patterns I have chosen today are:
Flower and Echo ( feature )
Sharks surfing (filler)
To start, have a wine, some chocolate, relax your shoulders and thread up the machine with some beautiful thread.
Shark Surfing is comprised of 2 alternating rows. Row 1 is a wave and row 2 is a wavy line that brings you back to the start of a new Row 1 again.
Flower and Echo is best achieved if you do not sew the block borders on first. Baste around the block to secure it to the backing and wadding. Quilt outside the block line to move from flower to flower. When done sew your borders onto the block.
To make the flower choose a starting point and make 4 petals starting and stopping at the same point. This design helps practice the technique of moving the machine over the same stitching line as you are adding the next petal.
To echo the flower, travel outside the block from the start/end point of the flower and trace the outline leaving about 1/4" of space of each echo row.
Use the outside of the block to move to the next echo flower.
If you were not using the QAYG method and could not attach your borders after quilting, I would stitch very close to the seam line to move to the next flower. Much like a stitch in the ditch.
I hope you enjoyed todays patterns. Remember relax and have fun with your FMQ. It is not a precise art but you will amazed at the overall effect of your quilting.