After sorting/refolding fabric several weeks ago, I pulled my next project and got a Wildcard. A Wildcard means I can make whatever I want that’s not already in My Quilty Bucket or I can pull from the bucket again. I only thought about it for a very little while and couldn’t think of any other project I wanted to make just then, so I pulled again and ended up w/an HRTs ufo which consists of Half Rectangle Triangles that my friend Katy cut for me w/her Accuquilt Studio 2 when I visited her in Michigan in Aug 2017.
I probably should’ve thought on a Wildcard project a little longer and maybe had a looksee on Instagram before I decided to pull another project because this FPP Heart pillow that Madonna made is so lovely! I know better for next time.
The HRTs have been in a shoebox since I returned from my visit in August 2017.
When I opened the shoebox I was delighted to find some other Grunge fabric I forgot I had. I kinda remember adding it to the box after I returned, intending to send it to Katy to cut. I decided to incorporate most of it into the quilt.
I didn’t really have a plan…just made it up as I went along.
And this is what I ended up with.
I did lots of practice FMQ on it.
I decided to give it to my youngest son so I added some Denver Bronco fabric to the back since he’s a big fan. This pic is before warshing.
And this is after, in all its crinkly wonder.
And here are a couple close-ups of my favorite grids of quilting.
I have one more finish to share as well. I recently started a Quilt & Craft Fellowship at my church. We gather the 2nd Saturday of each month and bring whatever crafty projects we’re working on.
This was my “traveling” project. The strippy HTSs are cut-offs, or bonus pieces, from a quilt I made for one of my nieces last year. This quilt with the cute kitty backing will be gifted to my youngest granddaughter on her 5th birthday in August.
Thanks for stopping by. Until next time, God Bless & Happy Stitchin’!
A Thread for Life
Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. Colossians 4:2NIV
Doodling ain’t easy and neither is Free Motion Quilting, but I have heard that doodling is a great segue to FMQ. That’s all fine and good, but what if you don’t even know how to doodle?! This is me. Or rather, this was me. Thanks to Christina Cameli, I am becoming a Doodler! And guess what, it really does help with Free Motion Quilting!
Let me back up a little. Since I developed this passion for quilting in 2011 I’ve wanted to do FMQ, but it requires A LOT of practice. Honestly I wasn’t willing to put in the practice, especially not on a domestic machine. So…most of my quilting over the years has been simple organic wavy lines done w/my walking foot.
I told myself I would learn FMQ from using Pantos when I got a longarm. Well, I recently acquired a longarm and I planned on becoming the Panto Queen! I ordered a few, watched some videos, and dove in. I didn’t do too bad.
However, there is a pretty steep learning curve to pantos too. That steep curve along w/the realization that I’d have to switch the handles ( to the front of the machine to baste the edges each time I advanced my rows caused the novelty to wear off rather quickly. Which brought me begrudgingly back to FMQ. I have since gotten a couple of REALLY good ideas on how to circumvent having to switch the handles.
I almost resigned myself to organic wavy lines. But I told myself how ridiculous that is. I have a longarm now!
So I attempted to do some things I’d seen, (I cannot even say “learned” because I was so terrible at it), at a Quilting Is My Therapy Quilting Clinic last summer. I allowed myself a few rows of this atrocity before I found my groove w/a largish meander.
After quilting almost an entire king size quilt w/this meander I’m chalking it up as mastered!
But I want to be good at more than just organic wavy lines and meander. So I prayed about it and soon after, I started watching Christina Cameli’s videos on IGTV @afewscraps. She’s also on YouTube under the same name, afewscraps. And I finally, finally started doodling!
At first I was really bad.
But the more I doodled, the better I got.
Which gave me the boost I needed to keep doodling!
After practicing this Flourish pattern for awhile, (several pages) I worked up the nerve to try it on a quilt.
I quilted this entire lap quilt w/it and now I’m chalking this up as mastered too!
The next doodle I plan to turn into FMQ is Echoed Swirls. And as you can see, I have been doodling it quite a bit. I’ve thrown in some Flourish as well. Another great thing about doodling is I can do it while I’m on conference calls!
And…I’m super excited about having finally got this book! I’m completely smitten w/edge to edge, organic style quilting.
When it’s all said and done, I may not even want to use Pantographs! How about y’all? Are there any other doodlers out there?
Who am I that the highest King would welcome me? I was lost but He brought me in, oh His love for me Free at last, He has ransomed me, His grace runs deep While I was a slave to sin Jesus died for me, Yes He died for me I am chosen not forsaken, I am who You say I am You are for me not against me, I am who You say I am Who the Son sets free, oh is free indeed I’m a child of God, yes I am In my Father’s house there’s a place for me I’m a child of God, yes I am – Who You Say I Am – Hillsong Worship
Quilting became my passion in 2011. If you are interested in reading about the start of my quilting journey, you can do so here. Needless to say, I’ve wanted a longarm ever since I knew such a thing existed. But as you know, they are expensive and require A LOT of space. This has not kept me from test driving them, I do so any and every chance I get. At stores, shows, retreats, friend’s homes, etc. And the more I drive, the more I want one.
After moving to Liberty Missouri in 2018 and frequenting Angela Walter’s Quilting Is My Therapy shop, I set my sites on the HQ Amara and started thinking of ways to get one sooner than later.
The two immediate things I could do are 1. stop spending money unnecessarily and 2. apply that extra money towards my car payment.
But then I started thinking where would I put it? I have a good size sewing room in the basement but a longarm would not fit in there, even if I moved the guest bed out…and I’m not giving up my cutting table.
However, I do have an extra garage that is currently being used as storage and my pets’ poop room. It would make an awesome sewing/quilting studio with some remodeling and I believe I could fit everything in it. So now I’d need to pay off my car AND remodel a garage before I can get a longarm!
Fine. I can do this. Stop the unnecessary spending and start applying the money to the principal on my car loan and in about 5 years or so, I should be ready to buy a long arm. And this means no more paying to have my quilts quilted. For the last year I was taking them to Angela’s shop to be quilted but I would have to start doing my own quilting on my domestic machine. Fine. Another sacrifice I’m willing to make to hit my goal sooner….until I decided to make a king size quilt.
The more progress I made on the king size quilt, the more I wondered how in the world was I going to quilt it on a domestic machine! And then I remembered a good friend telling me back in November that she was planning on selling her longarm. At the time, it went in one ear and out the other. I had my mind on Amara and Amara on my mind. And hers was not an Amara. But the more I thought about it, the more sense it made.
She would probably give me a great deal on it.
With minimal rearranging it would fit perfectly in my office/spare bedroom.
I could become really proficient on the longarm whilst I pay off my car, get my garage remodeled, and save to buy my dream machine.
So I reached out to her. And guess what?! She GAVE it to me! For FREE! I just had to get it from AZ to MO.
And so it was! Meet Esperanza (hope in Spanish), the newest addition to my family!
She arrived on March 10, 2020 in those big boxes in the garage pic. I put her together mostly by myself. My son helped a little. What was once a spare bedroom/office, is now what I call the Finishing Room. It’s where I quilt and bind my quilts.
I put the twin bed in storage and moved the office into my bedroom.
Before Esperanza arrived I started researching Tin Lizzie and more about longarm quilting in general. It is not a very popular brand and there isn’t a whole lot of information about it but I found a couple of helpful videos on the TL and watched several How To vids on Sparrow Quilt Co. They are actually an APQS distributor but they have great How-To videos on YouTube.
I ordered a roll of Warm & White batting from Joann because I had recently used it for the first time on a smaller quilt and I really liked it! I also ordered a couple of pantographs from Urban Elementz.
I started practicing on the longarm on March 20, 2020. Here are a few of pics of pantograph and FMQ practice. Not all done in one day.
I really had plans to become the Panto Queen. I thought it would be a perfect gateway to FMQ. And it may very well be for some people, but not for me and definitely not on this machine. The main reason is because the machine only has one set of handles which means I have to disconnect from the back and move to the front each time I advance the quilt to baste the edges. Let me tell you, this got old very quickly. But I’m not mad about it. It is forcing me to practice FMQ.
The most surprising thing I’ve learned lately, is that batting has a right and a wrong side! It comes w/the right side facing out just like fabric does and the right side has “dimples” and the wrong side has “pimples”. I cannot believe I’ve been quilting for almost 9 years and didn’t know this!
So now you know. I have a longarm! And I am so grateful and ecstatic! Thank you Lord! It’s not Amara but it will serve it’s purpose well. I still plan to upgrade to the Amara someday and I am continuing with my goal to pay my car off sooner BUT I don’t necessarily have to remodel the garage at all. My current set up works really well.
AND!!! I didn’t have to quilt my king size Everything Goes Scrappy Trips on my domestic! Some of you have already seen pics on Instagram, and I’ll be sharing more pics here on the blog, but here are a couple in closing.
Thanks for stopping by! God bless and happy stitchin’!
A Thread for Life
preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. For the time is coming when people will not endure sound Or healthy teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions – 2 Timothy 4:2-3 ESV