Open Line Friday


Vintage Scissor, Lori Kennedy Designs

Good Morning, Quilters!

I am thrilled and delighted that so many of you have decided to join me at The John C. Campbell Folk School in North Carolina over Labor Day! (Read more HERE) It will be my first time at The Folk School and after reading about how many of YOU have already been there and loved it…just makes me more excited!   I can’t wait to meet YOU!  We are going to work hard and play hard and I promise that by the end of the week YOU will be a CONFIDENT MACHINE QUILTER!


I am also thrilled and delighted that we have a huge group (perhaps thousands???) who are jumping in on the Second Annual Machine Quilt-a-long!

Last year’s Quilt-a-long was a huge success and is still available HERE

Is this a project for beginners?

Yes!  This is a great project for beginners!  First of all, the project is small-just a fat quarter size.  It is important for beginners to start small when learning machine quilting in order to learn how to maneuver the quilt under the machine without all the weight of a big quilt.  Also, small quilts require minimal time and fabric requirements which help give the beginner quilter confidence that they can complete a project!  (Ban the UFO!)  Finally, we will learn several techniques on the Small Quilt that can be applied to the Large Quilt-marking, stabilizing, design.  All of the motifs are fairly easy motifs (especially if you doodle first!!!) but the final product will be beautiful and not just a “quilt sampler” –squares of different motifs.

Why not white on white backing fabrics and what about black on black fabrics?

I prefer to not use white on white fabrics for my backing because it is harder for the needle to penetrate the paint or coating of these fabrics.  Any time the needle has difficulty penetrating the fabric-it has a chance of causing a slight needle deflection and this shows up in our stitches as a slightly imperfect stitch.  I’ll admit this is a small thing…but it’s usually easy to avoid these fabrics for the backing.  I also avoid batiks because they are very tightly woven fabrics and can be difficult for the needle to penetrate.

As for black on black fabrics…The same rule applies.  If you can rub your fingernail across a fabric and feel a texture difference-it probably has paint on top and will be more difficult.  Sometimes this will also cause tension problems…and who needs that???

I want to emphasize…this is a small thing.  Many beautiful quilts are made with batiks and white on white fabric backgrounds…but if you have a choice, consider an alternative.

Vintage Scissor, Lori Kennedy Designs


When will your second Craftsy Video be released?

My second class, “Creative Machine Quilting-From Doodle to Design” will be released in just ten days–on April 11!!!

I’m so excited!  We will be starting a giveaway next week!

What about YOU?  Do YOU have any questions?

Will YOU be joining the Quilt-a-long?

If not, what’s holding you back?

Happy Stitching,


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

37 thoughts on “Open Line Friday

  1. Hi Lori, I do have a question about thread colour. I am just starting to quilt a T-Shirt quilt I have made and many of the blocks are different colours. I want to quilt concentric circles which will cross multiple blocks, navy, white, yellow, beige, as I go around; and I am not sure what colour to use in the top thread as I cross these blocks. Do you have any suggestions. Thanks. Judith

  2. I am really looking forward to the quilt-a-long. I have the perfect focus fabric for the backing! Thanks for doing this again. It is a real challenge but I know that it is great practice for machine quilting. I am also looking forward to getting your new Craftsy class!

  3. Why are you using a focus fabric for the back of a wall hanging? It won’t be seen, well, in my house maybe by the spiders…

    • That’s a great question! You don’t NEED a focus fabric on the back–I just do it for fun! It is purely for my enjoyment–and I reason that focus fabric cost the same as other fabrics-so why not? While it is true that it won’t be seen when it’s on the wall, it will be seen while you are quilting it and whenever it gets moved around. Also, most of my wall hanging sized quilts get used as “vase quilts”–under flowers, etc, I will see it often enough that I enjoy a fun backing fabric.

  4. I had read that white on white fabric should be avoided as a quilt back because the needle could knock off tiny chips of paint and drive it into your bobbin case. That could cause some serious damage. The best reason to stay away from white on white on the back.

  5. Oh how I wish I lived closer by and could attend your course in North Carolina! Maybe one day, somewhere. In the meantime I rejoice that we now have such ready access to your knowledge via the Internet! Thanks again for all your hard work. I am looking forward to purchasing your new on-line course.

  6. Hi Lori! Looking forward to the quilt-a-long and to your next Craftsy class, too! I’ve got my quilt sandwich pressed and marked and ready to go. Always enjoy following your blog and adventures in quilting.

  7. Hi, Lori, I could very easily become a groupie of yours! I love seeing the things you do! I’m look looking forward to doing this sew along….do we just do it at our own pace…or work as a group? And, if by a group, where is the group at since I am just starting.

    • I will be adding lessons every week. You can work at your own pace. Perhaps we could all post our photos on Flickr or on the Craftsy platform-under projects.

  8. Your workshop at The John C. Campbell Folk School in North Carolina over Labor Day sounds like great fun. Unfortunately logistics and schedule won’t work for me this time. Hopefully you’ll teach there again, as it does sound like an amazing place and class. But, I’m definitely interested in your new Craftsy class. Very exciting. I’ll happily help increase awareness on all accounts this coming week.


  9. I wish everyone the best with this sew-a-long! With our Lori at the helm? All will sail smoothly I’m certain. And your new video? It will be released one day after my birthday. How cool. Wishing you more success than ever!!! ***smiles***

    • Just follow along each week! No sign up required! And be sure to comment about progress! If you have taken my Craftsy class you can post photos in the project section

  10. This will be my first lesson with you–everything is pressed, layered, marked and ready to go. I’m just learning machine quilting—thank you!

  11. I’m in too . My spools aren’t finished, but I’ve learned soooooo much. Love reading all the comments on a Friday. Happy sails ahoy!

  12. Hi Lori, Looking forward to the quilt-along. Also looking forward to your Craftsy class being available. Have fun in North Carolina.

  13. Hi Lori, I was interested to see you use the word “paint” to describe what is applied to the fabric surface of a tone on tone. I use the same word when I talk about TOT’s in the machine quilting classes I teach, because I’ve never come up with a better term…. I have always wondered if there is a “proper” textile term for this “paint”?? Do you know if there is? I have never heard one, but always wondered… Thanks.

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