Quick Tip-Quilting with Pre-Cuts

Charm Squares, QuiltingGood Morning, Quilters!

Do YOU ever quilt with pre-cuts?

Last week, when I was using charm squares (5 x 5″) from different manufacturers, I came across this little problem:Charm Squares, Quilting


Argh!  I had to cut my pre-cuts!

My friend Kelly Ashton–known for precision piecing–recommends that you measure all your precuts before stitching–and you may need to do a little trimming!

She did a little research and learned -more than 150 layers are cut at a time!  –

With that many cut at once, it is likely that some grading will occur.

Charm Squares, QuiltingAlso, when fabric is cut with a pinked edge–some manufactures measure from the zig–while others measure from the zag!

I found it too confusing–so I re-cut my pre-cuts!

Charm Squares, Quilting

Thank you, Kelly for setting me straight!

(For more tips like this get Kelly’s Craftsy video (25% off):  Conquering Challenging Seams

and check out her very thoughtful blog, Kellyquilter.com)

What about YOU?

Do YOU ever use pre-cuts?

Do YOU have any pre-cut or piecing tips to share?

We’d LOVE to hear!


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 lckennedy@hotmail.com.  Thanks!

Four Secrets to Better Spirals

Spirals, Lori Kennedy, FMQGood Morning, Quilters!

Thank you all for participating in the Open Line Friday discussion on Stabilizing…Be sure to read all the comments–it was very informative!  Once again we have proven that 10,000 heads are better than one!


I love Spirals!  I’m pretty sure every quilt I’ve ever made includes some variation on Spirals.

However…Spirals can be challenging.  Stitching one continuous line with even spacing is not easy.

More Spirals, Lori Kennedy, FMQ

My first ever blog tutorial was Four Steps to Perfect Spirals HERE

(I didn’t even stitch the steps back then!)

At the time-I recommended stitching the spiral with one continuous, fluid motion.


Begin by drawing two parallel lines.

Start quilting in between the two drawn lines.

Curve around, brushing the top line and stop in the center (between the two drawn lines–next to your starting point)

Secret ONE

In order to have room for the second half of the spiral,  you must leave a large gap above the bottom line.


Secret TWO

It is possible to stitch a spiral with a stopping point.

Why is a stopping point so important?

Stopping points allow you time to adjust your hands or adjust your quilt….or time to just think–about where you are going next and what the spacing should be.

Start between the lines, curl around brushing the top line and leaving a large gap above the bottom line. Stop HERE with the needle down.

Continue the Spiral:

After pausing, reverse direction.  Stitch down and around, brushing the bottom drawn line.

Stop on the right side of the spiral between the two drawn lines.

Secret THREE- The beginning point, middle stopping point and the ending of each spiral all line up in between the two drawn lines.
Spirals, Lori Kennedy, FMQ Add another Spiral…Spirals, Lori Kennedy, FMQSecret FOUR

Add scallops above and below the row of Spirals to create large Spirals.

Be sure to maintain the same spacing that was in the Spiral–otherwise it will look like an echo-stitched Spiral–a subtle difference….

Of course, there IS one more secret to Spirals…

I know YOU can guess?!?

Spiral FMQ, Lori Kennedy


Colored Pencils, Images, Photography



For more machine quilting motifs and tips, try one of my Craftsy classes at 50% off–Limited time only, so hurry!

Doodle to Design on Craftsy

Now that YOU know The Secrets to Spirals are you ready to give it a twirl???

Happy Swirls and Twirls!


PS…All tutorials, image 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.