Free Motion Quilting Demo

 I worked at my Janome dealer's shop last week for their annual open house and was kept busy with free motion quilting demos.

free motion quilting feather table runner

I used a gradient fabric and cut out teardrop shapes with an Accuquilt die on my Sizzix cutter. I fused them down on the gradient fabric, with the light parts going on the dark side of the fabric and vice versa.

free motion quilting feather center table runner

 A circle was die cut and applied for the center where several points came together. And then I stitched away, off and on throughout the day!

I had another sandwich prepared for showing ruler work and any other customer requests. Some of the customers even sat down and took the Janome 8900 I was using for a little "test drive".

I had a great time and met some very nice people. Three ladies signed up for my free motion quilting class (which is today!) and I am very happy to have another chance to teach quilters.

When I'm working at the shop, I am utterly useless if a customer asks about the sergers. So I bought a Craftsy class and plan to watch it on my tablet in the shop while using their sergers.

Craftsy is having another great sale on their classes (see the ad on the top right sidebar above) and you can also "gift" classes! Or you can click this affiliate link: Save up to 50% on Craftsy Classes 12/21-12/24

I cannot believe that Christmas is almost here! Because I have been so busy with my quilting for customers and working one day a week, I had resolved to not make any gifts this year. This is to keep me from going into a last-minute gift making frenzy/panic. But (at the last minute) I feel my resolve storting to slip!

Are you almost done with preparations? My husband has been working out of town during the week for the last 4 weeks so I still need to brave the aisles of Walmart for a few gifts for the kids!

I'm linking this belatedly, again, on Leah Day's Free Motion Friday and Nina Marie's Off the Wall Friday.


  1. I just got the die you used - love the idea of the flipping of the fabric!

  2. What is your opinion on the 8900 vs the 7700 or 8200. Have you used the 1600 model. I've been considering the purchase of a new machine but as yet haven't taken the time to drive 45 minutes to the dealer.

    1. I have not used the 1600, nor have I seen one in a few years in the local shop. I think it’s a great possibility for free motion, but it needs different needles than an average sewing machine and the feed dogs need to be covered up instead of dropped. I could be wrong on this. Certainly it’s an affordable option for a nine inch throat. I’m thinking it may have better visibility than the full featured machines. It can only do a straight stitch.

      I have only one issue with the 7700; the accufeed mechanism that stays on the machine even when not in use. It gets in the way, just like on the 6600, which I’ve mentioned is something I’ve had issues with when quilting on my 6600. (You can see this in the diamond sashing video) Other than that and the difference in switching stitch plates, the 7700 is nearly identical to the 8900 and 8200, but I think it is cheaper than either machine.

      As I have mentioned before, I now help out at my local Janome dealer’s shop so I might be biased. I love both the 8200 and the 8900. The 8900 has more decorative stitches than the 8200. The 8200 is a little less expensive. I haven’t used the 8200 much at the shop, as the 8900 was already in a big Horn sewing machine cabinet and set up flush with the surface. Both are great machines. If I were to upgrade, I’d get the 8200!

  3. Hi Amy - When it comes to sergers the best thing to do is cut out a knit garment and sew it entirely on the serger. The time it takes to learn how to get the fabric feeding without being eaten, how to thread it, etc will all get sorted out as you make your garment. It might take 3-4 different garments to really get the hang of it, but at least you'll feel more comfortable about talking about them. I love your free motion feathers too! Beautiful!

  4. A note on the 1600. The older model used different needles but that is no longer the case. It uses regular machine needles. I have the 1600 and even tho the feed dogs don't drop, I just lower the stitch length to zero and use the FMQ foot. I don't have any problems quilting this way. Our local shop sold the last one just before Christmas. One was ordered yesterday, should be there soon! Visit Sew Simple in Lynchburg Virginia for all your Janome puchases!