Sunday, 21 April 2013

Fresh Focus on Free Motion Quilting

Although I was drawn into quilting through a love of colour and dyeing, I am also fascinated by texture – which led naturally to free motion quilting.

At the moment,  I am focusing on free motion quilting as the star of the show, the raison-d’être of the quilt, rather than a supporting role of adding interest or texture to the quilt’s design. 

I have an idea of the quilt I want to construct in my head – what I call one of my ‘mental masterpieces’. I am very good at mental-masterpieces. They highlight what is good about the quilt and are conveniently very vague about bits that don’t work and issues that need resolving! It is all so easy in my head and it never quite works out that way in real life! I was intending to enter this quilt at the Birmingham Festival of Quilts, but I realise now that I have a lot more playing about and exploring to do. The idea needs time to mature!

So, for the next 6 months or so, I am going to do just that – play around and explore free motion quilting. This is going to be the main focus of my blog for a while. I am working on small samples– mostly about 6” not quite square. A lot of my work is not quite even, regular or symmetric. I don't want it to look like a machine - and I love the phrase "consistently inconsistent" although I can't remember which quilter said it.

So, here are the first two pieces.

The first is radiating out from a central point, using one motif that gets larger as it grows out from the center. I've gone a bit wonky on the left hand lower corner, but that is easily sorted. The sections are divided by a double line of stitching. Likewise, I have deliberately tried not to match the side corners of the triangles with the triangles of the next section. If the corners meet up, the eye seems to be unable to decide whether to see the triangles as the positive - or the space in between as positive and the triangles as negative.

 The next one again uses the idea of radiating out from an off-center center. I've done very irregular curves and filled some of the spaces with the every useful pebble motif. I quite like this one and it would be very easy to variations replacing the pebble motif with a different filler.


  1. Blog reads well Florence!!!
    Have you got a 'follower' button? Thomas wants to follow.

  2. Ahh - as I said in my first blog - all a bit new to me. I didn't know I had to add such a thing. I will now go on a 'follower button' search