One of the classes that I teach is how to free motion machine quilt your quilted projects on a home sewing machine, not one of those fabulous long arm machines. It is a challenge to learn how to handle a big quilt in the space allowed us on our home sewing machines, and while I talk about it in class and show a few pictures of how to handle the quilt sandwich, more pictures never hurts.
Right now I am consumed with a big project, it measures about 60″ x 60″ . It is taking all of my spare time to work on this quilt. I am going slow and careful because I really want it to be good when I am finished with it.
I worked hard all summer to get the top finished and now that I have started traveling and teaching this fall, most of my sewing time when I am home, is taken up with working on this project.
Currently I am quilting a large feather design that I marked using the ©Clover marking pen (fine) in the center sections of the quilt. (drawing of the design)
In order to do that I have to really bunch up the quilt to fit it all in-between the needle of my machine and the “harp” or “arm” of my sewing machine. I need to have control of the quilt and I keep it bunched and in a manageable package so that I can move it easily and smoothly while applying the design. One thing I did before I made my quilt sandwich was to use spray sizing on the backing fabric of my quilt. I also used Pledge or some other furniture dusting product and sprayed and wiped the surface of my sewing table. Both of these procedures really helps the back of my quilt move freely while I am quilting it. This is a big deal when you are dealing with a BIG quilt.
Between other projects and teaching this quilt will probably take me months to finish quilting. I don’t mind because this project has been a drawing on my design wall for years and is finally coming to fruition and I’m excited about working on it.
I do have to fit in a few Christmas presents along the way, so it will come out of the machine for a bit on the weekends. It’s good to be busy and have things to work on that you truly love. Happy Quilting!
Do you leave the paper pattern on the quilt when you do the actual sewing?
No I just use it to mark the design. I use the clover white marking pen to mark the design. I used the paper to make a mock up of the space I wanted to fill, then I cut out the design and traced around it with the clover pen.
The Clover white pen will disappear when I iron over it once I am done with the quilting.