Judy in Phx, AZ
i was so terrified of fmq (feathers-shudder) that i waited until my dgd was a year old before i quilted her baby quilt! i did a very so-so job- not horrible for a first timer, but not very good either. she sleeps with the quilt that grammi made just for her and she loves it! and what about me?? i discovered the most amazing thing in the world. i LOVE fmqing! who knew?! i get a real charge out of it. i still do doll quilts (that swap is open every month and no doubt there's a new sign up) and i do mug rugs and tablerunners, and other stuff too. i swap because it encourages me to go further, try harder and have something i would want someone else to look at and say, "ooo, i really like that. i want to try that, too" i have given dq's when i was new to quilting and i have seen my work improve. i have rec'd from newbies and i've seen their work improve. sometimes i get a treasure of gorgeous quilting and i stand in awe with it in my hands. but honestly, i feel that way about all of them. someone took the time the fabric, and energy to make something just for me. so i have gained skill, have a lot more to go. i have made friends, and i have wonderful quilt laden walls, each one with a story attached. so jump in, screw up, laugh and froggit, and enjoy it. it's very freeing, and you end up wishing you could get to the fun part, the quilting! good luck, and happy quilting!
Are you a perfectionist? I am. Can't tell you the times I have thrown away the stuff after I have completed quilting that I won't accept. I have finally decided that what works for me at this point in my experience is stitch in the ditch, shadow quilting and anything that I can design around any type of a grid because grid quilting can be done with a walking foot and I don't have any trouble accepting the completed work that I do with a walking foot. But keeping FMQ with uneven stitches? Forget it! My big important work goes to professionals. Life is much too short to keep trying what evidently I have no skills in and just ruin what I work on. It's disheartening to either have to rip, rip, rip or throw away. I kept one thinking I would use it, but it's never been off the shelf.
the video by Karen Hansen was so good...such good advice...and tips...love it, thanks for sharing with us.
Most people - kids as well as adults don't notice mistakes and have no idea what to look for. They see the overall picture and love it!
I'm very new at this to. just start with the very ez one and move on they will love them just because you make it for them. mess up happen but that what make it you. I have made 6 now 2 for me kids they are old now. The quils had mess up I did not or can not do the quilt by hand my hand can not handle it . But they still love them , My 2 friends was better but I still seen thing that could be better. They still thought it was the best thing . So STOP PICKING ON YOUR SELF JUST PUT THE LOVE IN IT THEY WILL DO THE SAME> Keep on quilting lol
I felt the same as you for several years: I hated quilting because I was always disappointed and critical of the results. Now I look at those early attempts and have a hard time remembering what was supposed to be wrong with my quilting. We're so often our own worst critics. And I agree with those who've said that most non-quilters won't notice what seem to you to be glaring errors - to them, your quilt is a near-miracle! I've been helped hugely by following Leah Day's online QuiltAlong http://freemotionquilting.blogspot.c...ilt-along.html She explains things clearly, both in videos and words, and her attitude is so positive and encouraging - she gave me much more confidence to just get on with quilting and lose a lot of the agonising!
I swim in that lake all the time, Margie! LOL
Recently I've been mulling a similar situation. I want to make a quilt for... a much-loved family member. But she may very well say something unkind. That's the way she is. I finally decided I'd better find out if she would like to have a quilt before I made it. I do love her, and I'd love to give her something that says that -- like a pretty quilt. But it won't give her any joy -- or love -- if she doesn't like the pattern, or the color, or the handwork, etc. For all I know she may think all quilts are ugly.
Here's my plot. She'll be over here sooner or later, and I'll have some of my quilting work in plain view. I'll probably talk about how I made this or that. If she says positive things, I'll offer to make her one. If she indicates impatience or distaste, then obviously it wouldn't make her happy, except perhaps for that fleeting moment of joy she gets when she sneers at the color, the pattern, the quilting, the uselessness, or her lack of need for a quilt.
It comes down to this: I like my quilts a lot. I'm happy with them, even though they're not perfect. I want to give her a quilt, but she may not want one. So the nicest thing for both of us is to make sure she actually wants the gift. She will be none the worse off without one, unless you count her missed opportunity to be snarky.
Most of my other friends and relatives would be happy to get a quilt, and besides, their mothers taught them that even if you don't like a gift, you pretend you do to be polite.
I think almost everyone has at least one family member like this!
Hey Margie, I'm waving at you from Sugar Land! :-) I recently started FMQ, too. I had taken classes through the years and practiced on lots of little sandwiches and finally thought ENOUGH! I had a simple lap size quilt I made for fun and decided to just GO for it. I like simple loop-de-loops and while they weren't perfect, that little quilt didn't look too bad once it crinkled up. So just dive in and feel that sense of accomplishment!
Straight line quilting can look really sharp depending on the design of the quilt, thread choice and width of the quilting rows. In the Jan -Feb issue of Quilty there are 2 quilts that are straight line quilted and they are gorgeous.