Saturday, June 24, 2006


Today I took a class from Cynthia Schmitz, award-winning machine quilter. I learned so much! Until now, I have done only stitch-in-the-ditch or a little straight-line quilting, but have been terrified to try free motion quilting (FMQ). Cynthia was a good teacher, and did a lot to improve my confidence. I practiced on larger stippling, then moved to filling in the circle with small stippling, as you can see in the photo. I call it small stippling, but she does teensy-tiny stippling, making this look huge. I'm not there yet -- and frankly, I'm not really wild about the tiny stippling. Just a matter of personal preference. I admire it, I just don't really care for the look.

Everyone else went on to learn trapunto in the afternoon, but I decided to opt out of that and continue practicing free motion quilting. (Again, I like trapunto, but I don't see myself doing it -- maybe in awhile I'll change my mind.) I tried to stipple outside a circle this time, and partway through decided it looked like hair around a face. I put in a curl right in the middle of her forehead, then finished off the face. Not that hard -- and so much fun!

And I went on from there to try non-stippling FMQ. There was a book with some ideas, and I gave it a try. How cute would these things be in sashing, or on a border?

1 comment:

Laurel S Holman said...

I have experimented with free motion quilting, and I love it! I've never taken a class, so I'm sure my technique is lacking, but I think it's so much fun to just go wild. I quilted hearts on my heart quilt, and I quilted Jeff's name into the border of the quilt I did for him. (Hard to see unless it's pointed out.) I'm glad you're breaking free of straight lines. They have their place, but adding in some of this kind of thing can make a quilt so personal, quirky, and fun.