Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Quilting - by yourself, on your own sewing machine.

Back of my Trimmings quilt

I bought a great quilting book with beautiful patterns from talented designers this weekend. I love the book but I was sad that the book clearly did not encourage quilting by yourself on your own sewing  machine, instead it encouraged hand quilting or using a professional longarm quilter (which are both good ideas too.)

Well, I think that quilting the quilt on your own sewing machine is great fun. I think that it is not as hard as we might believe and that a bit of practice and willingness to experiment, is all it takes. Also, finding the right approach, with the right level of detail for you, at that moment in time helps.  I am finding it a lot easier to do detailed designs, to take my time doing then, and to be happy with the results, when the quilt is not huge. I am also trying "quilt as you go" blocks to solve the difficulties in quilting a  big quilt.

The picture above is the back of my Trimmings 2011 quilt which I quilted this weekend. I hope to put on a sleeve and photograph the front this week. But the back really shows off the quilting. Up until now, I have not really liked the way the thread looks on the back of the quilt as much as the front when I machine quilt.  I am learning to go a bit slower and that really improves the look.

Here is a block with just straight lines, using a walking foot. Again, this is not hard, just takes practice and patience.

QAYG - stage 1

Here is a mug rug with a bit of both straight lines and free motion using a darning foot.

At the beach

And bit of stipple, one of my favourites on the quilt, especially once it is washed.

free motion quilting

There is nothing even close to perfect about my quilting. I have a long journey yet on this quilting road.  But I like it anyway, and it is fun to do.

So I hope you will give machine quilting, by yourself, on your machine, a try too.

Best,

Leanne
Here is the link to Fabric Tuesday, I hope you go and look at the other projects and ideas too.

Fresh Poppy Design

14 comments:

  1. Lovely quilting! I agree with you that it just takes practice and smaller quilts are great to start with. I've recently fallen in love with hand quilting, though. Such a dilemma!

    Stopping in from Quiltstory. My link is http://carolburris.com/quilting/half-square-triangles/ ‎

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  2. Wise words! Long arm quilting is becoming a little more popular here I think (UK) but is still an expensive choice, I assume it must be more affordable in US & Canada, as I sometimes see blog comments like "have 4 quilts to pick up from the quilter!!".
    Just out of interest, what machine do you use Leanne?

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  3. I completely agree, Leanne! Quilting the quilt myself is the only way I can work it. I enjoy it too much to farm it out.

    If you haven't checked out Leah's site, you really should. http://freemotionquilting.blogspot.com She quilt all her quilts with no frame. For a long time she was using a regular sewing machine.

    I use a flynn frame on my standard sized sewing machine sometimes. I'm completely in love with quilting.

    Long armers are pretty expensive here in North Carolina.

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  4. I'm with you too! Quilting on my machine is SO fun! No, It's never perfect - but I can say that I did it. I love quilting myself!!

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  5. well; this is so interesting...I hand quilt...always have..and I love it. But since I started blogging; just a few months ago, I have to say; everyone is having so much fun that I had to try this FMQ and I do enjoy it... not always....lol. I need lots of practice...I am practicing with smaller items and hand quilting the large quilts that I sell...and all the new modern patterns are such an inspiration,,,so; never say never; just jump in and go for it!!

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  6. Hi, just thought I would post an answer to Sheila here for anyone else. I am very lucky to have a Janome Horizon machine which I bought last summer. My old machine was 25 years old and has moved off with my daughter to sew and quilt with. I also use a 30 year old Janome at my summer cottage with either a walking foot or darning foot. The longer throat on the new machine surely makes dealing with a full size quilt easier but otherwise it is really the same working with the new one as the old one, practice and patience seem to be the key.

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  7. Love the bubble quilting pattern! I have tried it but need to PRACTICE! I used to hand quilt everything for fear of machine quilting. A friend walked me through it and now I love it!
    I'm here from Fabric Tuesday -http://www.sewmanymamas.com/2011/04/quilt-sandwich-time.html

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  8. I've been hand quilting for 20 years and the machine still scares me. Great Job!!!

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  9. Great post Leanne. I am trying to be more adventurous in my quilting. I'm always afraid I'm going to ruin it when I quilt it, but this time when I started quilting, I didn't like it, I stopped and unpicked it. I'm so glad I did. Now I just have to practice and then quilt it in bubble/pebble shapes.
    I wish more quilters/bloggers would share how they quilt their projects.

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  10. Your quilting looks fantastic and I am inspired to give it a go again. It really hurt my shoulders last time. All that pushing and tension. I think I need to set up a table that is a little lower. Thanks for the inspiration!

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  11. I'm with you Leanne, some people are always flabbergasted that I quilt my own quilts and ask me all the time why I don't send them out. Why should I? Quilting is one of the fun parts! I put as much thought into how I want to quilt my quilts as I do on how how I want to piece them and what fabrics I want to use. I always encourage them to quilt their own. You never know unless you try right?

    By the way, the quilting on that mug rug is AWESOME!

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  12. I'm so with you on this too Leanne, to me the quilting is a huge part of creating the quilt. I'm to much of a control freak to let anyone else work on my quilts....plus it is pretty expensive to send them out. Great post.

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  13. I love those pebbles on the first photos, and the curved lines on te mug rug. So inspiring!

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  14. Everything looks so beautiful!!!! I especially love your mug rug, it is so pretty, and the quilting is perfect!

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