Sunflower Sampler-Adding Petals

Sunflower Sampler, FMQ, Lori Kennedy

Good Morning, Quilters!

Thank all of you who left comments in our Pretty Pink Sulky Thread Giveaway.

Please read yesterday’s post and get your mammogram!

Today we are stitching right along on our Sunflower Sampler.

Last week we marked the fabric and stitched the center oval.  (See last week’s directions HERE)

Your quilt should now look something like this:

Sunflower Sampler QAL, FMQ



To mark the quilt for the next step, add a 2-1/2 inch margin around the stitched center.

Sunflower Sampler, FMQ, Lori Kennedy

When you are finished, the quilt should look like this:

Sunflower Sampler, FMQ, Lori Kennedy

The petals will fill this space.

Add wide petals all the way around the oval.

Sunflower Sampler, FMQ, Lori Kennedy

Sunflower Sampler, FMQ, Lori Kennedy

When you are about 3/4 of the way around the oval, stop and look at the spacing.  Draw in the last three petals to be sure the final petals are evenly spaced.

Sunflower Sampler, FMQ, Lori Kennedy

When you have completed the first row of petals, your Sunflower should look like this:

(Don’t you just LOVE it already!?)

Sunflower Sampler, FMQ, Lori Kennedy

The next step is to echo stitch and add a second set of petals–it’s easy!!!

Echo stitch the first petal–but stop in the middle…

Sunflower Sampler, FMQ, Lori Kennedy

Add an inset petal between two adjacent petals…

Sunflower Sampler, FMQ, Lori Kennedy

Sunflower Sampler, FMQ, Lori Kennedy

Continue— echo stitch the tip of the lower petal and add another inset petal.

Sunflower Sampler, FMQ, Lori Kennedy

Continue around the entire Sunflower.

Sunflower Sampler, FMQ, Lori Kennedy

When you have added all the inset petals, add a row of echo stitching around the entire flower and knot off…

Sunflower Sampler, FMQ, Lori Kennedy

Isn’t it lovely?

The reason it works?

We’ve built in contrast–density contrast.  

The center of the Sunflower is densely quilted and the petals are less densely quilted–this gives them “POP”!

And we’re going to “POP” the petals even more by adding dense quilting motifs around the outer edge…

Can YOU apply this technique is YOUR quilts?  It always makes quilting more interesting!


I understand that some of you are still struggling with thread choices.  We will talk more about thread in coming posts (I can talk for hours and hours about thread–I’m kind of a thread nerd…)

In the mean time, just look at the thread you already own…choose the best color–something with a little contrast is nice.

Start really examining your threads right on the spools.  Some are finer, some are thicker.  Some have sheen, some are dull.  Some are wiry, others are smooth.

Some feel better in your hand than others.

Comparing threads is the best way to learn about the different qualities.

Sulky is going to create a sample package of threads along with a color card for readers of The Inbox Jaunt.  I’m not sure when it will be ready, but it’s in the works…

In the meantime, buy a new thread fiber or brand every time you go shopping and start developing YOUR favorites!


Including a sneak preview of a Secret Project that’s had me chained to my sewing machine for the past two weeks!

Until then…

Schedule your mammogram and stitch your petals!


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!



26 thoughts on “Sunflower Sampler-Adding Petals

  1. Lori, I’m happy about your mammogram reminder, but how many of us know that heart disease is the #1 cause of death for women? I was so well educated about breast health. Eight years ago read a news article about heart disease in women and was shocked. Women’s heart attack symptoms are so different from men. The info saved my life–I had a heart attack 2 weeks later! I was a healthy, fit, 59 year old, had no risk factors at all! It was a complete anomaly. Knowing my symptoms saved my life.

    Please do a red thread contest in February and promote women’s heart health! Quilting makes our hearts happy. Education will keep our hearts healthy.

    Thanks for your fabulous site and blog.

  2. Lori,
    I thought that I had missed the Sunflower “finish” & was delighted this morning to find it first in my emails. I am eager to try this although we’ve a steady stream of house guests coming to be nearby The Smoky Mountains, TN for the leaves changing. I will persevere & eventually get it finished. As always,Thank You ever so much

  3. I love your blog. The sunflower got me motivated. This past week I went out and bought orange fabric, a lovely variegated background, and a spool of sulky 30 weight variegated orange. Now, I just have to get started…. Lol

  4. I’ve been reading about phony Egyptian cotton sheets (the Cotton Egypt Association, which licenses and certifies suppliers, estimated that 90% of products labeled “Egyptian cotton are fakes). Does this also apply to ELS thread? Refer to article in Bottom Line Personal, October 15, 2016, page 9.

    • To others out there supremely interested in thread, might I suggest visiting . Scroll down to the footer at the bottom of the home page and click on ‘Articles’ under the EDUCATION heading. Then look to the right side and click on the (+) sign next to ‘Cotton Threads’ to see many articles. Look for these titles to get the real scoop on Egyptian cotton: “Potatoes and Cotton|What is Egyptian Cotton?” and “Cotton Threads|How Much Cotton Does Egypt Grow?”

      • Ooo… when this posted, it took out the website I was referring to … it is Superior Threads dot com. All the rest is still intact.

  5. Lori, what about speed of stitching? Should I be concerned that I still have to move at such a slow pace, particularly with effects like echo-stitching? Is a slow to moderate speed the norm even for accomplished FMQers like you?

  6. Hey Lori
    This series on the sunflower is just awesome! I wish I could participate…I’ve torn my Achilles’ tendon and had surgery to repair it, so I’m stuck with my leg up and can’t sew/quilt. Im very frustrated. But in the meantime I’ll watch your class on Cratsy to cheer myself up. Thanks for sharing your knowledge.

    • I was confined to bed with my second child and I was determined to sew something to bring home to my little one besides her baby brother.So my husband found a table like the ones in the hospital that go over the bed.He set up my machine and I was able to make her a stuffed doll and an outfit.She was so excited with them(more so I think than with her new brother)I hope you can get something like this rigged up so you can sew while you are confined to bed.

  7. Lori, you use a chalk pencil…..I have one like it with various colours of chalk, but I found the marks almost impossible to remove. How do you get rid of the chalk markings??

  8. A thread sample package sounds like a wonderful way to compare threads. I am looking forward to seeing what your secret project has been! Thank you for your tutorials…they are wonderful.

  9. Pingback: Sunflower Sampler-Week 4-Linear Fills | The Inbox Jaunt

  10. Quite late, but I am doing this! I’m glad you chose a sunflower, as their petals are quite wonky (excusing mine). I have learned that I need a different foot for echo quilting (and some other styles). But I had success in the thread department: I finally used some variegated thread I got many years ago, and it worked!

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