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Monday, June 2, 2008


Can't sleep tonight so I thought that I might start my next series of lessons. During June I am going to share with you what I have learned about free motion quilting and embroidery.
This is what you can do. Now all of you free motion virgins, don't be faint of heart, we will start at the beginning. Click on the pic to see the stitching on the flower which has been done using free motion.


Free motion is a technique where you drop the feed dogs of your sewing machine, put on your darning foot and sew using your hands to control the stitch length. When you move the fabric slowly under the darning foot you will produce small stitches. As you move the fabric more quickly, your stitches will become longer. The beauty of this technique is that you are able to go in any direction that you wish. Think of the possibilities!

This is what you need

1. A sewing machine in good working order with darning capability.

2.A darning or free motion quilting foot.

3. Two 14” x 14” quilt sandwiches (quilt sandwiches #1 and #2). Layering muslin, cotton batting and a scrap of fabric makes the quilt sandwiches. These layers are pinned or sewn together around the outside edge.

4.Regular sewing machine needle size 80/12.

5. Have the same thread on the top of the machine and in the bottom (polyester or cotton).

6. Set up your machine.

7.Divide each quilt sandwich into four parts using a fabric marker or a pencil.


1. Free Motion Routine-This is a good habit to get into, it will prevent problems later.

a)Put fabric under presser foot
b)Put presser foot down.
c) Bring bobbin thread up.
d) Start needle up and down a few stitches, and then move the fabric. Stop and cut off the thread tails.

2. Now push and pull the fabric up and down a few inches so that you are making a very long and close together zigzag. You will be very wobbely at first and that is because the feed dogs are down and you are controlling the stitch lengths. You are also learning a different and new eye hand co-ordination.

3. Now try going from right to left a few inches at a time. This will be a little more awkward but persevere .With practise you will improve.

Tommorrow I wll post some samples and some more excercises for you to try. Again, if you have any questions email me at

Now off to bed.

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