Thursday, February 4, 2016

2016 Free Motion Quilt Along - How to Quilt That

Greetings friends!!
I'm excited to share this installment of the
2016 Redbird Quilt Co.
Free Motion Quilt Along:
"How To Quilt That"
** YouTube Video Included **
We're using the whimsical
Lewe's Balloons Growth Chart Panel
by Susy Bleasby for
 the World of Susybee.
Isn't it adorable ?
Quilting fabric panels is an excellent way to hone your FMQ skills.  Panels are fairly inexpensive and don't require weeks and months of piecing.  They make beautiful quilt tops and provide a great training mechanism with minimal investment.

If you're just joining us be sure to checkout these prior FMQ Along Posts:

Introduction => click here
Sponsors => click here
Supplies => click here
Part I Pieced Borders => click here
Part II Pin Basting ==> click here

Also, be sure to jump over to our Sponsors Facebook Pages and give them a "Like".
They're providing some fantastic products for Giveaway and we're pretty happy about that!
Aurifil Facebook
Quilter's Dream Batting
World of Susybee
Creekside Fabrics, Quilts and Yarns
Sew It Is Quilt Shop
Quilty Pleasures Quilt Shop
To learn more about the Sponsors click here.

This installment of How To Quilt That will focus specifically on the Lewe's Balloons Growth Chart.

There are many considerations for deciding how to quilt a top -- here are a few:

1. Who is the quilt for, how will it be used, will it be washed and dried regularly?
2. How is the quilt constructed?  Does it have busy designs and fabrics ?
3. Are there subjects on the quilt that need to be highlighted ?
4. Will the quilting alone be the highlight of this quilt ?

There is no right or wrong way to quilt a top.  Quilting is often a reflection of your style and skill level.  Over time, as your skill increases, your style and choices will change accordingly.

When you're just starting out it's ok to stick to basic background and fill designs - eventually you'll branch out and try your hand at more complex designs.

The key is to gain a comfort level with a few motifs-- and then move on.

That cycle will repeat itself again and again.

Practice is Key!

Why two layers of batting/waddling ?

Some of you asked why I use two layers of batting.

Well, because lately most of my quilting has been all about the texture!

** All images shown quilted with Aurifil 50Wt Thread **

I'm not creating a functional quilt per se.

I may be creating a Workshop Sample
Needle Turn Applique Sample - 2 Layers of Dream Wool
FMQ Feathers Sample - 2 Layers of Dream Wool
Or a donation quilt
Redbird and Berries goes Really Mini - 2 Layers of Dream Wool
or I may be creating a new Recipe for the Moda Bake Shop
Chevron Shuffle - 1 Layer of Quilters Dream Wool and 1 Dream Orient
Or a practice piece to use as a table topper at home!
QP Curve Template/Feather Practice - 1 Layer Dream Wool 1 Layer Dream Blend

I find using two layers of batting significantly enhances the quilting definition and creates awesome texture! 

I'll often use two layers of wool -- other times a layer of wool and a layer of cotton.  

The wool provides loft (place it next to your quilt top) and the cotton provides stability (place it next to your quilt back).  

Of course Quilter's Dream brand batting is my favorite.  
Quilter's Dream makes high quality bats using eco-friendly methods in the USA.  
Check out all the Quilter's Dream batting here. 

How to Quilt the Lewe's Balloons Growth Chart:

In the following YouTube video (click the image to view) I share my thoughts about preparing to quilt the Lewe's Balloons Growth Chart.

NOTE: If you watch the video from your computer you'll be able to view the many notes and annotations -- so consider using a computer verses an Iphone to view the video ;)

I'm a bit new at this video recording business so thank you for providing honest and fair feedback -- improvement is always my goal!

I look forward to hearing your feedback and addressing any questions you may have.

Next installment we'll be talking about the tools I love and how I setup my sewing area for quilting -- Oh, and we may do a little stitching ;)  Stay Tuned!

How are you coming along so far?  Have you pieced?  Basted?  Be sure to share your progress images on the Free Motion Quilting Frenzy page or on any of the Quilt Along posts on my Facebook Page!

Thanks for stopping by and happy quilting!


  1. I have my borders on the growth chart but haven't basted yet. I am waiting for some thread to arrive and wishing I had ordered the variegated crème brulé.

  2. Am I posting in the wrong place?