And the Winner Is…

Free Motion QuiltThank you to all of you who entered Wednesday’s giveaway of Molly Hanson’s new book:  Free Motion Quilting for Beginners and those who think they can’t…


I was impressed to hear how many of you quilt 20 or more hours per week!

(I was also impressed to hear how many insomniac-quilters we have in this group!)

I include myself in the group that quilts about 10-15 hours/week.


In honor of Molly’s book, today’s quilt sample is one of my beginner vase quilts.  I was experimenting with several free motion quilting techniques:  following a stencil, echo quilting, different threads-and  binding—OH that binding-those corners make me cringe! As you can see–this quilt is FAR FROM PERFECT!  Yet I love it and use it all the time..


What about YOU?

Can YOU overlook some of the warts and wobbles in YOUR free motion quilting and enjoy your practice pieces!?

We’d love to hear how YOU use YOUR practice pieces!  (And how YOU overcome perfectionism…)



PS…And the winner is….Helen Lawrence–Congratulations, Helen! (Please contact me at

If you did not win FMQ for Beginners…it is available at Amazon  and at YOUR local quilt shop.

PS…All information, tutorials and images are the property of Lori Kennedy at The Inbox Jaunt and are intended for personal use only.  Feel free to re-blog, Pin, share with attribution to The Inbox Jaunt.  For all other purposes, please contact me at



23 thoughts on “And the Winner Is…

  1. Congrats to Helen!!! Oh my! Now I absolutely KNOW that I’m quilting obsessed!! I, generally, quilt 7-8 hours PER DAY!!! That’s M-F and some on the weekends, too!! And I still have quilty thoughts swimming in my brain all night! Sigh………….Been this way for several years now. I really don’t think there’s a cure (and if there is I don’t want to know about it!!!! LOL!!!).

  2. yes, I can overlook the “warts and wobbles” of my fmq. I am a retired teacher and always taught my students to celebrate their successes and to know that all things need practice and to enjoy each milestone during the journey. we always found something that they did well and celebrated that. i do the same with my fmq.

  3. Congrats to Helen! That book ought to be fun with winter setting in and our long dark evenings! Oh btw Lori I bought several of the lights you told us about! Three are Christmas gifts but one delivered already as she sews a lot for Christmas and was complaining about light. I love both of mine and might pick up a couple more as I’m moving these around!
    I can over look a few bobbles so much better now…and I’m even getting over “the point it out to everyone”…LOL! Why do we do that! So they know we know it’s there?…but most of them wouldn’t of noticed and so what if they did. 🙂 We are so hard on ourselves. My perfectionism drives me to practice and try hard but is not ruling my life anymore…much…haha! 🙂
    My practice pieces have recently turned into thread loaded scribbles because I will try this and that and modify…but a couple cuter ones I did when I first found you last Christmas I have decorating my sew room. 🙂

  4. Some beginner pieces are easier to deal with than others. I used the first bed quilt I ever made on my bed till it started tearing apart. I cut some pieces out of it and plan to make pillow shams with them! Those beginner pieces are there to help us. They help remind us what didn’t work and they remind us how far we’ve come! I love the quilting on your little quilt above! And congrats, Helen!!

  5. Lori, did you start the early piece with stencils and work from there or is it all freehand?
    I have a problem figuring out how to begin and how to fill in the spaces so the fill enhances the main motif rather than competes with it.

      • Lori-
        I’m so glad that you said that you started this with a stencil.
        I just bought a couple of them yesterday to use on a lap quilt. I’ve been naughty and haven’t practiced FMQ, even though I have ALL the resources. I thought the use of a simple stencil would be helpful. I definitely will do some doodling on paper first and some sandwiches. Echo quilting as you mentioned, would be nice on this piece.
        I do have golden papers too; maybe I’ll try that method also, so I will have to get a pounce pad.

        Thank you for enriching my “quilting education”, and for sharing your joy!

      • …I guess the last piece is courage. I’ve never known how to start and work up a piece that looks like yours or others. Now I know I already have the tools, just need to pick something and do it! That’s the courage part 🙂

        Love your post, your inspiration and your teaching techniques.

      • It does take a bit of courage every time. I still get nervous when I start quilting a new piece. That never goes away.

  6. Congrats to Helen! I’m sure you will enjoy your book. Now to go to Amazon. I practice a lot on pot holders and candle mats, I saw where one person used gold thread on white squares, bound them together and used them as a wall hanging. Very impressive.

  7. I was born without a perfectionist gene, so I have no trouble overlooking blips. I will redo something that won’t hold together, usually. Once though, my tension was wrong at a retreat, but I had to have something to do, so I kept sewing. So when I meander quilted it later, I did it closely with several passes over each seam.

    I practice FMQ on charity quilts for kids because kids don’t care if something isn’t perfect. Larger pieces go to people who are more interested in being warm than having perfect quilting.

      • I have not used my ponce pad. I have read that some of them are removed with ironing. Did you try that Doreen? I know some quilters use them a lot.

      • Doreen-
        Thank you so much for the warning about using pounce pads.
        I will cross that off my list.
        I think that I am going to lay stencils on several layers of golden papers, pin, then sew (no thread) the design through the papers;
        I also am going to do simple free motion echoing. Yea!

        I read that a well known quilter said that she had used the Frixion pens to mark a quilt (supposed to erase clean). No matter what
        was tried, there was a faint blue line that would not come out.

  8. Just so enjoy your posts and the comments from other readers. I’ve glanced at some other blogs but fond yours so helpful and the people who read,then comment are also helpful and interesting. The post about batting both informed and inspired.I was amazed by how many people have unpicked a whole quilt! They shared many helpful tips and tools. Who would have thought of dental tools?. Inspired me to get to that queen size that is sitting on the shelf because I hate the quilting and batting,but love the quilt and know I won’t remake that top! No guilt of time wasted by reading your posts for sure.

  9. It depends on the purpose of the quilt – show quilts will get fixed for every stitch that goes in the wrong place, quilts that are going to be warm hugs, not so much! I am picky when I am quilting a customer’s quilt – I’ll even use a magnifying glass to check the tension balance! I guess that is why I like using rulers to keep lines perfectly straight and I will frequently measure and mark guidelines when I’m quilting.

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