My Favorite Quilting Books-

Diane Gaudynski, free motion quilting, Guide To Machine Quilting

Whenever I sit down to sew, Diane Gaudynski’s books, Guide to Machine Quilting and  Quilt Savvy are right by my side.  Both books are filled with tips, techniques, quilt motifs as well as inspiration.  You can check out her website here.

Ms. Gaudynski (a lovely lady that I had the pleasure to meet while I lived in Milwaukee) is a Master Quilter and has won many, many top honors.  All of her quilts are stitched on standard sewing machine–no long arm for her!  In other words, there is hope for all of us!  Ms. Gaudynski has written two books.  I like both, but if you can only buy one, I’d recommend the smaller, spiral bound Quilt Savvy.  In fact, if you could only own one book on free motion quilting–I’d recommend Quilt Savvy!  Do I sound like a commercial?

Diane Gaudynski, free motion quilting,

The other book that is always by my side when I sew…

free motion quilting, sketchbook, doodles

My doodle notebook...I hope you have been working on your very own Doodle Notebook..If you haven’t started one…check out the post, Doodlers are Smarter!..here.

Diane Gaudynski, free motion quilting, doodles, sketchbook

You might also like: Doodles Make the Best Quilt Designs  I will be adding several more posts on keeping quilting notebooks in the near future.  I think notebooks/sketchbooks are very important!

And don’t forget to leave a comment in Kiss the Blarney Stone Giveaway–you might be the lucky one who wins the Shamrock Doodle Quilt!

In other news…I’ve added a “Bookshelf” Tab above.  I will be adding my favorites to it slowly–so check it often.

Kiss the Blarney Stone-Giveaway

Shamrock Free Motion Quilting, Giveaway

Today, I am working on a St. Patrick’s Day Doodle Quilt Giveaway!  

Shamrock Free Motion Quilting, Giveaway

The quilt is scattered with lucky clovers–hope you are the lucky winner!

Shamrock Free Motion Quilting, Giveaway

Just a few stitches left…the winner should have this in time for St. Patrick’s Day!

Shamrock Free Motion Quilting, Giveaway

Just answer one question for me in the “Comments” section….

Shamrock Free Motion Quilting, Giveaway

Would YOU kiss the Blarney Stone?  (maybe you have already?)  Comments will be accepted through Sunday, March 10th.

Shamrock Free Motion Quilting, Giveaway

Next week’s Tuesday Tutorial will be the Free Motion Quilted Shamrock!

Tuesday Tutorial–The Open Leaf

Free Motion Quilt, Tutorial, Open Leaf

In today’s tutorial, we are stitching the Open Leaf.  (It is open on the bottom-which will be important in some of the variations.) It is my favorite stitch motif as it is very versatile for borders and for fillers.  There are endless variations.  This motif can be used as a replacement for feathers, and it is a stepping stone for learning feathers.

In our last tutorial, we learned the Greek Key.  The Open Leaf looks great paired with any geometric pattern.

Free Motion Quilt, Tutorial, Open Leaf

So without further ado,  let’s begin the Open Leaf.   Start with three parallel lines-any width that suits your fancy or your quilt…I usually stitch this pattern from the bottom –up.

Begin on the center rail, curve up and to the right.  Stitch along the right rail for several stitches…

Free Motion Quilt, Tutorial, Open Leaf

Stitch down and back toward your first stitches, but leave a small opening.  This prevents the center of the motif from getting too “thready”  with a build up of stitches.

Free Motion Quilt, Tutorial, Open Leaf

Next, stitch up and to the left rail, again stitching along the left rail for several stitches–before returning to the center again.

Free Motion Quilt, Tutorial, Open Leaf

Repeat, swinging from right to left.  You will quickly find a rhythm–and you won’t want to stop!

Free Motion Quilt, Tutorial, Open Leaf

For added interest, stitch an occasional Upward Curl (See tutorial here) or a Downward Curl (See tutorial here)

Free Motion Quilt, Tutorial, Open Leaf

There are many variations we will be stitching with this basic pattern…It is a work-horse of a stitch!

Free Motion Quilt, Tutorial, Open Leaf

Please check out the other tutorials in the Quilt Section above…and tomorrow…a Doodle Quilt Giveaway!  (Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day–a Kennedy Family Favorite!)