Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Sanity Stitching: Free Form with Rulers

I put my foot down yesterday (with myself) and made sure that I got some sanity stitching done. Remember my post about Sanity Stitching? Quilting keeps me sane, so it has to be part of my life or the crazy comes calling.

Contrasting thread and fabric isn't for the timid. All the bobbles show.
Besides, anyone who does free motion quilting needs to keep that muscle memory going with practice. I felt a little rusty.

Love these QP Curve rulers. So nice in the hand.

I wanted to do a little ruler work, but didn't have anything pieced to work on. Plus I didn't want to try a full-fledged project while stitching on the sales floor of my shop. I wanted something guilt free, not another WIP or UFO. So I did a little free-form ruler work. That sounds fancy, doesn't it. Well, it's not. I just slapped down a ruler in a few places and then quilted a few shapes. Not much to look at maybe, but it fed my soul.




I made a sandwich with a dark blue solid and got out some thread I had been itching to try. I love my Glide thread (some is now listed in our online shop too! More to come.) for my free motion work, but as a sewing machine dealer, it's always good to have plenty of choices in thread, so I've been looking at bringing in threads from Wonderfil Specialty Threads.


This is Spaghetti, a 50wt Egyptian cotton thread, but I've got others I want to try too, all picked up while at Quilt Con East. It's also in one of my favorite colors, of course, turquoise. So pretty.



I made some circles with a Simple Circles template too. See that puzzle piece shape? Something like this is important to have on any template that is an interior shape. You want to be able to put the template around the foot and then take it off without having to cut the thread.



With the piece in, you've got a smooth place to slide the foot against. Though that's less important than being to take it off and on.


Then I just played however I wanted. I'll mess around with this a little bit more as I have time. If I have time, that is. Moving a shop isn't the easiest or most time efficient thing to do!


Speaking of the shop, this coming Saturday we begin the move. I'm really excited about this as I'm sure I've mentioned a bunch. I'll have a studio/classroom that is separate from the sales floor so that will help me do my creative thing whether sewing, quilting, designing, or teaching.

This isn't a show stopper of a piece, but I'm enjoying having some quilting fun, and if I get sick of it, I'll pass it on to the hubby to use as testing fabric for machines. Guilt-free quilting.

11 comments:

  1. Hi Amy, always love your work. I saw an idea somewhere where the person uses "practice" pieces like this and cuts them up to make small zipper bags....just a thought!

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    1. I either keep them as teaching samples or hand them off to the hubby who uses them to test the sewing machines he's working on. I have made bags and purses when I can.

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  2. Hey Amy: Question. Start and stop. Just working on quilt top and design I choose was not thinking about starts and stops. Have a lot of them. On top of quilt looks fine. Cut close to stitching. On the back however it appears to be nested. Too many up and downs with needle???? Cutting close will take out stitches??? Newbie here. ddvuo1209@gmail.com please respond.

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    1. Likely too many stitches. Just 3 or so will work for non slippery thread, a few more for shiny polyester.

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  3. Amy, I have many practice sandwiches, and I stack them up on my sofa in my studio. My dogs positively love laying on the pile. Recently my puppy "ate" the cheap outer cover of his crate bed (he's only 6 months old). I took one of my bigger practice pieces and used it to make a new cover for his cheapo bed....he loves it, and it's really cute!

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    1. Better that he taste tested a sample than a finished quilt!

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  4. I also have a question. I have difficulty maintaining consistent stitch length. Any suggestions? Thanks.

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    Replies
    1. Practice, make sure your project can move smoothly as you quilt, and more practice.

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  5. When I first saw your finished practice piece, it reminded me of a peacock. A very beautiful one!

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  6. It's lovely seeing you play, Amy! I wish I'd been with you at QuiltCon when you were choosing threads. I want to play too! Unfortunately for me, the quilt I'm supposed to be FMQing right now is one that I don't like. So that makes it tough to get myself motivated to work on it. Perhaps I should just do as you've done... make a solids sandwich and just do something. Love seeing your doodles! I hope the move goes smoothly, though I know you'll be working very hard. It's an exciting time. Be sure to document with photos so you can fondly look back at them and say, "remember when."

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