November 27, 2010

Free Motion Quilt Along: Vines and Feathers

Have you read the post on vines and feathers? Have you sketched some designs? Alright, let's rock.
The last two medium sized strips on the quilt are reserved for this week, and you can stitch whatever you'd like in them. If you only want to stitch feathers or only want to stitch vines, fine with me. I did one strip of each.

For vines I started with the "simplest vine" adding the vein detail.

Then I did some large closely spaced leaves. They remind me of bay leaves.

Then some spaced skinny wiggly leaves, tapered at the top. They remind me of tarragon, an herb I'm currently infatuated with.

In the other strip I tried feathers. Up to this point, including what I did on my practice pad, I'd stitched a total of four "simple" feathers. I was excited to try some curvy simple feathers. To help me keep the feather curving consistently, I started by drawing a guideline up one third of the strip with my fabric pencil. Using masking tape with marks to guide me, I spaced the pattern repeat every 4 inches (2 inches between the leftmost curve and the rightmost curve) and as you'll see below that was too close. If you're doing this try spacing the pattern repeat every 6 inches at least (3 inches between the leftmost curve and the rightmost curve).

Trying to stitch this tight curve it tapered to nothingness unintentionally. Oops!

Then a double feather. A little angular.

Then a single feather. Started off fine on the right but got a little loopy coming back up the left. In general I'm happier with the stitching I'm doing on the right side of my feathers. I think that's just something that comes with practice.

Done with experimentation, I finished the strip with a straight simple feather. Much better. It might have been wiser to start with this one but I guess I was just too excited to start drawing on my quilt!

So there you have it! Those feathers will probably give you some trouble at first but I'd say they're worth trying. Even a "bad" feather still looks pretty fun! If you're just getting a feel for these designs for the first time, it's fine to just choose one and do that for the entire strip, I expect you'll be feeling much more comfortable with the design by the end of the strip. Enjoy!


Gail Lizette said...

you really make this look easy! I need to practice a lot!!!

Linda said...

Gotta try this one!! Thanks

Cal said...

The vines look wonderful and I love the feathers, reminds me of hearts.

quiltingnana said...

I am still practicing!

Jocelyn said...

These look so lovely. I've got to get busy and try to practice.

Cheri said...

Love the taragon the best. I'm still practising! and Practising and then...Practising! thanks for the instructive encouragement!

Elsa said...

oh, just love the leaves. You make this all look so easy and I know it's not. Practice, practice, practice! That's what I've got to do!

Jeane said...

Thanks Christina for all the instructions. I love leaves, vines and feathers even if I am not good at them. My sample quilt of stitches will hang in my sewing area for quick references. I have really enjoyed this sew along.

Heyjami said...

Thanks for your wonderful instruction! I'm trying to figure out how to get the beautiful patterns on the fabric so I can quilt them. I will give this a shot.

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