Sunday, November 9, 2014

More Free Motion Quilting Practice

Quilting is one of my favorite passions.  But in the past I have been very predictable in the quilting patterns I used.  It has always been the easy route of straight lines, stitch in the ditch etc.  But lately I have begun to branch out a little more in my free motion quilting practice. 

A friend gave me several wall hangings that she had pieced but not quilted.  She was cleaning out her stash and wanted them to go to a good home that would finish the projects.  This particular wall hanging is a fall tablescape of pumpkins, gourds etc.  So while I was trying to decide how to quilt the piece I decided to give it a little bit more of a modern feel using some free motion fabric painting if you will.

Here is the finished wall hanging.

The first step was to secure the center of the wall hanging by stitching the pumpkin.  I decided to do simple lines running the direction of curved lines on the pumpkin.  This was a quick stitch. 
The stitching was done in a continuous formation.

After securing the center with the pumpkin I did a circular motion around the dots on the bowl.  I did not worry about crossing over my stitch since I wanted a free form to the stitching.  Once this was stitched I moved onto the flowers and gourds.

On the flowers I did a circular motion starting from the center and worked my way out.  On the large flower I used the shape as my design guide.  For the stems I stitched down and back up to create a dimensional effect.

The flowers were stitched from the center out.

A simple outline of the leaves added just the right amount of detail.

On the leaves and stems it was up and down the printed lines.
After these were all finished I moved to the gourds.  The large orange and green gourd did not have much detail printed onto the fabric.  I decided it needed a little more of a straight line approach to emphasize the width of the gourd.  So I went across and then made an angular turn at the other end. 

The stitching emphasized the width of the gourd.
The last piece was the most fun - the corn.  I wanted something on the cob part that would bring out the kernel design.  I did a tight swirl pattern all around the cob section.  Then for the stalks I stitched straight lines up and down with a turn at the top for the stalk section that is folded over.  The corn turned out really well and added just the right touch to the piece.

The swirled stitching reminded me of pop corn.

The straight lines brought out the strings in the corn stalks.
Over all the piece turned out really well.  I must admit that free motion quilting sometimes intimidates me and I don't feel like I do it well.  But allowing myself to "play" on this piece has given me a little more confidence in trying some new things.  I hope you will be inspired to try something new in your free motion quilting journey.

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