2016 was supposed to be the year that I came to grips with free motion quilting and now, as we head towards the end of 2017, I'm still struggling! At the Festival of Quilts I was lucky enough to see a FMQ demonstration by Philippa Naylor and just a few days later, at an exhibition of her work at Cowslip Workshops, Sheena Norquay was kind enough to share some of her FMQ tips.
So back to some FMQ practise .........
Philippa suggested using Microtex needles size 60 and these slid beautifully through the fabric layers - and I didn't break even one (much to my surprise). Instead of quilting gloves she uses a piece of anti-slip grip mat under one or both hands - this was great to use and so much better than my gardening gloves!! :)
Sheena said that she sometimes uses an embroidery hoop to hold her fabric layers. I didn't even own one of these and was surprised at how cheap they are! I bought an 8" one and found that it fitted quite easily under my quilting foot. It gave me a lot of confidence having the rim to hold - not that I didn't make lots of errors in my stitching. In fact once I'd messed up the stitching a bit it made me relax a little. Another of Sheena's tips was to always draw out your design on paper first to get your brain into gear and I found that it helped to actually make up some of my own designs.
So this is my rather wonky sample piece - it measures approx 9" x 9"
And I still find random squiggles really difficult!! :)
Happy wobbly stitching - Anita x