"Emma's Star" Quilt

Finished! Finally!

I've just finished the batik king-sized quilt I began back in September. The pattern is called Emma's Star II.

On the design board 

Phew! Working with this mammoth spread was something!

Besides hoping to add some beauty to our drab bedroom, what kept me going was working with the lovely fabrics. Playing with color really lifts my spirits, particularly on gloomy winter Indiana days.

Though I love the look of a hand-quilted piece, this one would have taken me a year or more to complete, so I machine quilted it.  I used a walking foot for the first time (fabulous!) to make the wavy lines through the squares, and then I stepped into the world of FMQ or free motion quilting to outline the stars.

Oh my! Free motion quilting is some kind of fun! Basically, you use a special foot (darning foot) and then you lower the feed dogs and turn the stitch lengh to 0. No longer will your feed dogs move the fabric forward. No, no! Now the speed and direction of the sewing will be completed controlled by you, the sewist! It's exhilarating! And terrifying! Because one moment your stitches are moving slowly along, guided by your hands, and the next, your foot has pressed too hard on the pedal and you're zooming along, taking enormous stitches. Or you slow to a crawl and the stitches get so very small and close together. But the control is all yours, and the patterns you can make, with some practice, are amazing! This is a skill I'm going to keep working on because it has so much potential use, and is just pure fun. (Except when it's not.)

If you're intrigued by the idea of FMQ, check out Free Motion Quilting for Beginners by Molly Hanson. It teaches different designs by giving instructions for small projects like bags and boxes.

Machine quilting a KING worried me, though, but I found an awesome tutorial, complete with a couple of videos, showing how to do row-by-row quilt-as-you-go. And this worked great! I'm pretty sure I'll repeat this method in the future when quilting a very large piece.
Rows laid out before cutting batting and backing

And now my formerly boring bedroom isn't!!!


Kara said…
Wow! It looks amazing all together!
Anne said…

Popular Posts