A Friend Loves at All Times

I made this wall hanging for a friend of mine as a Christmas gift. It was fun and fast, especially since to finish it, I stretched and stapled it over a cheap painter's canvas.

Friends love at all times free motion quilting wall art

I have several cardboard heart templates on hand, so I traced around one for the heart. I wasn't thinking ahead and centered the heart in the middle of the piece and found myself running out of space. I marked a base line for the word 'friends' after marking the heart and freehand wrote it with my air-erase marker.

I did the stitching with Filtec's Affinity thread in Rainbow coloration. It's the variegated version of glide thread. Smooth stitching! I used white sewing thread in the bobbin.

I took a few short videos with my new camera too. But I don't know if I'll share them as they download differently than what I've done before. The pics shown here are also from the new camera. I still haven't ventured off of the automatic settings yet. It's not a Christmas present as it was a planned purchase from my quilting income, but it feels like one.

I stitched on white Kona cotton over a layer of batting, no backing. It worked ok, but it was a little harder to move the piece under my needle. It felt a little floppy and I had to be very careful to keep my hands centered around the needle so the fabric didn't bunch up. To finish the piece I just stapled it around a cheap painter's canvas from the hobby store, AC Moore. Since the piece was stretched around the stretched canvas and wood frame, it didn't matter that there was no back. But I worry that the single layer of fabric might not hold up well to the staples.

We had a lovely Christmas and I hope you did too!


  1. Lovely, great idea to staple it on canvas.
    Best wishes for 2015 with lots of great ideas.

  2. You are so clever! Love the "dot" on the i!

  3. It is so beautiful. The variegated thread adds so much depth and complexity. Can you please explain why you stitched it without a backing fabric? I do not understand that part.

    1. Thank you Denise. Two reasons why:
      1)The back won’t show since the stretcher bars are covered with canvas already and the canvas will help the batting pop the unquilted areas up. Otherwise I would use a backing fabric as the quilting loses its dimensional quality without it.
      2) I do my best to be frugal and since the backing won’t show and the canvas helps pop the dimensional quality of the quilting, I skipped it.

      Given that I was concerned with the fabric holding up to the staples, I don’t know that I’ll skip it next time. I also had just enough batting to cover the front side of the canvas. If I had used more, I could have stapled through the fabric and batting which would have been more supportive. But by eliminating the excess batting and backing, I did reduce the bulk at the corners, which folded up much more smoothly without the bulk of batting. It’s a toss up.

  4. Without any type of "stress"/pressing on the piece and the canvas reinforcement, the pulling on the staples should be pretty minimal and hold ok. I have done very small projects without a backing but have found that I don't like the instability of the piece while doing the fmq and wouldn't go w/o on a larger one. I really love the effect you got with that thread! I'm not familiar with it and will have to check it out! A very sweet gift and your fmq is awesome!!!! Hugs......