Sometimes free motion quilting can be so frustrating! The problem is, I am a perfectionist. I also am one of THOSE that thinks if you don't quilt your own quilt, you can't lay claim to making the quilt. WHO AM I TO ARGUE with Eleanor Burns - who "quilts with her credit card!" Problem is, my credit cards are all gone, and we live on cash only.....when I think about shelling out cash to someone else to quilt, well............I would rather buy fabric!
This template is from one of my absolute most favoritist free quilting template locations.....forestquilting.com - if you haven't been there, be sure to go and collect all of their beautiful free quilting motifs. I used the one called "Feathered Heart Motif"
The pdf says it is for a 12" square, so I needed to reduce it for my 8 1/2" practice piece. To figure out how much to reduce it, I divided my square size, to get the percentage of the original size I needed to print. (The original pattern size 12 divided by 8.5 equals .67 or 67%) On my print settings, I set it to print 67% of original size.
Next, I took my quilt square, and marked the center lines, by folding and marking. I used a light box to align the center lines on my square, with the center mark on the pattern. I then traced once side of my heart. Then I flipped the pattern over, and traced the other side. Note, the disappearing ink pen disappeared too quickly, so I had to revert to the water soluble. The other neat thing about this project is learning to use all those nifty tools I have sunk a lot of money into!
I set my machine up for free motion quilting. This time I spray basted my practice sandwich, as this is a pretty complex motif and I would have a heck of a time working around pens.
I tested my machine out on scrap piece and everything worked fine.....I went to my real piece and YIKES I started having skipped stitches. Since I cleaned my machine, before I started, I knew that wasn't the issue. So, I changed needles - stitching once again worked fine on my scrap piece. Went to my real piece again - and skipped stitches!!! WTH!!!! Yes, I am using expletives, because I HATE reverse sewing.
So, to the internet I go.....since I had a new needle, my machine was clean, my tension was fine on my scrap piece, I couldn't figure out what was happening, then it dawned on my, I had a thicker batting on my scrap piece!! I found Diane's advice about skipped stitches in free motion quilting here - and made a new "scrap piece" using the same skinny batting, and voila - problem of skipped stitches solved.
NOTE BENE: this is a repost of one of my popular posts in the past. I have since purchased a long-arm, and as you can see from some of my other posts, I have gotten quite a bit of practice since this originally posted. I still think it has valuable information in it, so I wanted to repost for my new followers.
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