Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Free Motion Frenzy



I have had a fear of free motion quilting for some time but decided my Stitch Tease quilt was the one I was going to finally push aside my fears and really try to make it special.

My first snag was that IKEA was out of the numbers print and I had to drive to another store to get the 6 yards I needed for this quilt. This mission was accomplished when I attended the LA Modern Quilt Guild Meeting a few days ago. I stopped at the Ikea in Carson on my way to Los Angeles.

Yesterday I sewed the backing together and got the quilt all spray basted and ready to go. Then I set up my Bernina 820. Threaded it with Isacord 40 wt. Polyester thread, attached my stitch regulating foot and started quilting. The thread broke about every 2 minutes. 

A quick plea on Instagram led to lot of help. 
Change the needle to a #14 Embroidery needle
Re-thread the machine
Clean and oil the machine
Try a different thread
Make sure the BSR button is pressed on the machine

Nothing worked. So I decided to take my machine in tomorrow to be checked and serviced.
Meanwhile, I really wanted to start quilting this quilt now that I had my courage.

I set up the old Bernina, the one with the tiny arm space. And guess what? No breaks, no problems. Just a lot of quilt wrangling through that tiny space.

Here's what I have so far. It's nowhere near good but I did it and I can hardly wait to continue tomorrow.

I quilted the middle row, which is Hadley's contribution to my bee quilt. I am loving this free-motion quilt stuff. It's actually quite forgiving.




Squiggly lines above and below the bottles and between each bottle in all the white spaces.





My version of bubbles or more like pebbles all around the word Celebrate.


I'd say I had a pretty good serious first try.

Now, what can I do for my aching arm and shoulders?


31 comments:

Svetlana said...

wow, this is going to be one amazing quilt. Love all your fmq.

Chase said...

Yay!! I have Bernia Patchwork Edition and have done most of my free motion quilting with it, but boy.. with smaller throat my arms always gets tired moving the quilt around..A cup of good tea is always what I do after long hours of quilting... :)

Trina Peterson said...

I love it! This quilt rocks. I started Leah's class, but haven't been back to it for a few weeks. I'm waiting for my Gigit 2 table to arrive :)

Carolyn said...

I love the squiggles around and bottles and the bubbles with celebrate are perfect. Can't wait to see how the rest progresses.

nerospost said...

That is going to be so beautiful (already is)! I love your quilting and the bottles in many colours are so cute!

Cynthia said...

Your machine quilting is fabulous!

Run Quilt Knit Write said...

I knew you'd love it!!!

heart of charnwood said...

It looks absolutely fabulous Di, great work, and I hope you get your machine all sorted! :o)

Canadian Abroad said...

I cannot believe how well you've done on your first try! So excited about this quilt.

Sandra Sews said...

That quilting looks perfect and sets off the bottles brilliantly!

Patchwork and Play said...

Mr Romance will give you massage, right after you have a bath, won't he! You've done a great job, especially considering the wrangling which obviously went on!

Cindy said...

Looks great Di! Can't wait to see more. Good luck with your other machine!

Cindy said...

The bubble quilting is PERFECT! Sorry you had such a struggle getting there ;(

Sara said...

massage for those achy shoulders:)

size 14 embroidery needle doesn't sound right to me though and why an embroidery one?! hmmm

Debbie said...

oh I think you are doing awesome! Great patterns to start with too. I still tend to grit my teeth when I fmq but I do start to relax when I get going good. Have fun with it!

Cindy Sharp said...

It looks great.

I hear that quilter's "gloves" help with the shoulder and arm pain.

Can't wait to see the finished quilt.

Margaret said...

Wow I think you just inspired me to try FMQ on one of my quilts today. I havent had the courage to try it.I just keep drawing and practicing on some fat quarters. Well today i think I will set up my machine and put a quilt in it. Wish me luck

Leanne said...

For shoulders and neck, remember to sit up, shoulder up and back straight. Try to stand up every 10 to 15 minutes and make sure your sewing machine is not too high (sit on a large book or stack of quilts if need be). I use a 90/14 topstitch needle, it has a long groove down the front so the thread has a place to glide through the fabric for fmq and it seems to help too. Your quilt is going to be so wonderful.

Marjorie's Busy Corner said...

Your quilting looks fantastic!! I'd say a very good serious first try. What are you using for a machine? I must sit too low also; my shoulders always ache.

Carla said...

You did great! By the end of it you'll be a pro : ) pebbles are my favourite

Live a Colorful Life said...

What a great quilt--love the quilting.

Annabella said...

I'd say you did great - I love the pebbles Di!! It will be fun seeing what you do in each section - so gald you managed to sort out the quilting and hope you get your machine sorted :)

jan said...

I am so proud of you - I can't get past stippling and straight lines! grrrr.... You did a fantastic job - Take two advil and one of those bottles of wine and you'll be good to go! lol!
Have fun
Jan

Nilya said...

F a n t a s t i c... Can we See the whole quilt?

Valerie said...

Di-it looks amazing! I hope your machine gets back on track -that can be so frustrating!

Katy Cameron said...

There's no 'wrong' in FMQ, it looks great :o)

Flying Blind... said...

Well I guess it is only right my block made you as mad as it made me sad!! All's well that ends well xxx

Danih03 said...

Love this quilt!! If you are having trouble 'wrangling' your quilt, consider getting a Supreme Slider and some quilting gloves! It will help tremendously with FMQ;)I know that Supreme Slider is expensive, but well worth it!!

Sarah said...

Hey, Di, your FAQ is good. It's really, really, good for a first try. I like doing those wiggly lines too. My pebbles never look good though. I don't think I'm patient enough when I, trying to do them.

Stephy Buscemi said...

Wonderful job for your first try! I think your bubbles look good! I've tried them myself on a long arm and mine looked like pebbles too. Good for u for jumping and giving it a go! I've been pushing myself to do the same- it IS scary!

Melissa said...

You did a great job so far- your FMQ looks great! Sorry to hear about the beginning - that sounds FRUSTRATING. Glad you got your other machine to work for you! Good luck with your other machine!