The Dragonfly–A Free Motion Quilt Tutorial

Free Motion Quilted Dragonfly

Good Morning, Quilters!  We’re back to work today with another circle tutorial in our progression.

While circles look easy, they are challenging to master.  In order to ensure success, we have been learning circles in a step-by-step progression.  Each motif builds on the previous technique to develop the hand-eye coordination and the motor planning necessary to advance to the next level.  (Race cars were just thrown in for fun–not really necessary for the progression.)

Today we have another fun motif for your free motion quilting net–The Dragonfly.

Free Motion Quilted DragonflyBegin by stitching a full circle.  In the sample below, the circle is the size of a pencil eraser.

Stitch an antenna with a curl on the top.

Stitch back over the antenna to the small circle, then stitch over one or two stitches to begin the second antenna.

Free Motion Quilted DragonflyStitch another antenna.  It’s fun if the second antenna is a little larger…

Stitch around the head of the dragonfly and stop at “the chin”…

Free Motion Quilted DragonflyNext, stitch another circle, slightly larger than the first circle.

Stitch a loop-de-loop set of wings…

Free Motion Quilted Dragonfly

Stitch ON the stitches of the lower part of the larger circle to get to the right side then stitch another set of loop-de-loop wings.

Stitch down to the base of the second circle.

Free Motion Quilted Dragonfly

Then stitch a String of Pearls–with each circle getting progressively smaller.

Finish off with a twirling flight line.

Free Motion Quilted DragonflyLovely!  Just the perfect touch for YOUR next quilt…

Free Motion Quilted DragonflyWe have a few more bugs to net tomorrow…

Next week we’ll work on Pebbles–the most challenging of the circle motifs–Not to worry…it will be EASY for YOU because you have done your homework!

Did you know that some cultures associate the Dragonfly with evil spirits while other cultures love the Dragonfly as a symbol of change…

To me The Dragonfly symbolizes the beginning of the beautiful days of autumn.

Happy Stitching!

Lori

PS…Don’t forget to DOODLE FIRST!

PPS…This tutorial was stitched with Aurifil 50 wt cotton in the bobbin and Sulky 40wt Rayon on top with a Schmetz 90 Topstitch needle on Kona cotton on my Bernina 150 without a stitch regulator.

PPPS…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 share with attribution to The Inbox Jaunt.  For all other purposes, please contact me at lckennedy@hotmail.com.  Thanks!

String of Pearls-A Free Motion Quilt Tutorial

String Pearls, Free motion quilting,Good morning, Quilters!

Now that the kiddies are back at school I hope everyone has a little more time for quilting!

Last week, we started our own lesson plan…to learn the Humble Circle.  Like most simple things, The Circle is challenging to get just right.  It takes a lot of practice.

We started with the  Dots and Dashes Free motion quilt tutorial last Tuesday (Tutesday?)

While Dots and Dashes is a fabulous pattern in its own right, it is also a SKILLBUILDER pattern.  It helps build muscle memory for other circle patterns.

String Pearls, Free motion quilting,

Dots and Dashes teaches four things:

  • Clockwise circles
  • Counter-clockwise circles
  • Stitching around a circle one and 1/2 times
  • Stopping in the middle of the circle –to start the dash…

If you are new to circles, try Dots and Dashes first, then move on to today’s free motion quilt tutorial, The String of Pearls.

THE STRING OF PEARLS TUTORIAL

Begin by drawing two lines.  For this tutorial, the lines are 1/2 inch apart.

Begin stitching in between the two lines.  Stitch a full clockwise circle.

String Pearls, Free motion quilting,

Stitch over the previous line of stitching around the circle to the midpoint on the right side of the circle.

(NOTE- In the sample below the stitching is offset–this is for demonstration only.)

String Pearls, Free motion quilting,

Instead of stitching a straight line — as in Dots and Dashes–Stitch a curve toward the bottom line and begin the counter-clockwise circle.

String Pearls, Free motion quilting,

Stitch over the previous line of stitching, back to the mid-point and begin another circle.

String Pearls, Free motion quilting,

Continue stitching clockwise and counter-clockwise circles to create a String of Pearls.

String Pearls, Free motion quilting,

Once you are comfortable with the String of Pearls, try varying the size of the Pearls.  (This will help when we try another circle tutorial–The Circle Filler also known as Pebbles.)

String Pearls, Free motion quilting,

String Pearls, Free motion quilting,Circles look simple, but they require a slower pace and full concentration…(You may notice, that I lack focus frequently!)

The clockwise, counter-clockwise method allows the quilter to develop a regular rhythm and this will help with both consistency and speed.  Again, Circles take practice!

THIS WEEK

I have decided to delay the circle tutorial planned for tomorrow.   Practice Dots and Dashes, The String of Pearls, and changing pearls (And of course, the Race Car)

We’ll add some really fun motifs next week…then a tutorial on “Pebbles” –-the Circle fill pattern later in the month.

So many ideas, so little time…

I’m off on a JAUNT!–Can’t wait to tell you about it!

Lori

PS…The above tutorial was stitched on my Bernina 150 (A domestic sewing machine) without a stitch regulator, using Aurifil thread in the

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 (please do) Pin, re-blog and share with attribution to The Inbox Jaunt.  For all other purposes, please contact me at lckennedy@hotmail.com.  Thanks!

 

Happy Blossoms-A Free Motion Quilt Tutorial

Happy Blossoms-A Free Motion Quilt Tutorial

Good Morning, Quilters!  Today is Tuesday!–Free Motion Quilt Tutorial Day!  A Holiday in the middle of the week!

Today, we are working on a background filler–a stipple banishing–background filler.  (Those who have followed for some time know that my goal is to BAN THE STIPPLE–it’s not pretty, it’s not easy, it’s not necessary…

To this end, I have been offering FREE free motion quilt tutorials every week for more than two years!

Today, we have a pretty little posy for you…The Happy Blossom.  Don’t you think some flowers look HAPPY, while other flowers, like roses, seem rather serious?  (Perhaps it’s part of my “pareidolia“???)

THE HAPPY BLOSSOM TUTORIAL

This motif could be stitched in a row–in a border, or stitched as a background, all-over, or “fill” pattern.

Happy Blossoms-A Free Motion Quilt TutorialBecause this is a fill pattern, we will not begin with any lines or “rails” as we do in most of the tutorials.

Begin by stitching a curved tail and an open circle.

Happy Blossoms-A Free Motion Quilt TutorialNext, stitch a loopy petal.  Stitch over two small stitches and begin the next petal.

Happy Blossoms-A Free Motion Quilt TutorialKeep adding petals around the center.

Happy Blossoms-A Free Motion Quilt TutorialAdding as many petals as necessary to surround the center– four, five or six…

The key to this flower is the small stitches between each petal.

Happy Blossoms-A Free Motion Quilt TutorialOnce the flower is complete, stitch across the stem, and sweep underneath the flower to begin the next flower…PERFECT!

Happy Blossoms-A Free Motion Quilt TutorialFor more interest, add a leaf anywhere along the stem.

Happy Blossoms-A Free Motion Quilt TutorialOr add a leaf or two between the petals.

Happy Blossoms-A Free Motion Quilt TutorialWhen stitching this motif as a background, there are several ways to travel to the next flower. (See above and below…)

Happy Blossoms-A Free Motion Quilt TutorialIt takes practice to stitch background patterns.

Take your time, stop frequently and plan.  When you get trapped, simply knot off and start again–like any Happy Blossom would!

 

Signed,

Happy Blossoms-A Free Motion Quilt Tutorial

NOTE-Today’s tutorial is stitched on Robert Kaufman Kona cotton, with Aurifil 28 cotton on top and Aurifil 50 wt in the bobbin using a Schmetz 90 Topstitch needle on my Bernina 150-Quilter’s Edition–(My Bernina 820 is in for a cleaning…)  No stitch regulator…

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 share, Pin and tweet with attribution to The Inbox Jaunt.  For all other purposes, please contact me at lckennedy@hotmail.com.  Thank you!