Old 04-06-2012, 01:54 PM
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Default Fmq

How many of you out there do FMQ with just a regular sewing machine or is this even possible? I want to try it, but all I have is a Singer sewing machine. I can't afford one of the fancy ones like Bernina, etc. Any tips you can share with me. I think I might want to try FMQ on the next small quilt I make.
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Old 04-06-2012, 02:01 PM
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It is absolutely possible to FMQ on an "regular" sewing machine. All you need is a machine that does a straight stitch, a way to either drop or cover the feed dogs, and a FMQ foot (a.k.a. a darning foot on most machines), and a foot control. The machine I do my quilting with doesn't have any fancy stitches.

I'd recommend you do a lot of practicing be for diving into trying to FMQ on an actual quilt though. There is a lot of information on this site about how to get started. You'll also find some great resources on youtube and my favorite is Leah Day's site at
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Old 04-06-2012, 02:01 PM
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I have a Janome 6600 and she does a great job at fmq (I am the one who struggles with squiggly and jerky lines). The challenge comes when you have a large quilt and not a big throat area. But it can be done. I definitely wouldn't start out fmq on a quilt. I would make quite a few practice sandwiches of similar fabrics and batting as one of your normal quilts. It takes lots of practice before you will feel confident enough to fmq a quilt. Even STID can be tricky....LOL. Have fun with it and try not to get frustrated as it is entirely different than drawing.
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Old 04-06-2012, 02:38 PM
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I have a Brother HS-2000 sewing machine & I've been quilting my own quilts. I've been trying different designs on various quilts and just having fun with it. It definitely can be done on small home sewing machine!! Practice, practice, practice and most of all....have fun with it!!
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Old 04-06-2012, 02:50 PM
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many, big=name famous quilters quilt their quilts on their domestic sewing machine- as long as you have a good straight stitch, a darning(hopping) foot & can lower your feed-dogs you can do it-
it takes practice.
start with small quilt sandwiches (like 12-15" squares -top, batting, backing) and as you get the hang of it work your way up to larger & larger- you will be quilting quilts in no time- there are tons of videos, tutorials for free motion quilting- check them out= and practice, practice, practice.
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Old 04-06-2012, 02:57 PM
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I start quilting with my cheapie Brother machine, it did it just fine. Make a practice quilt sandwich and give it a go
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Old 04-06-2012, 02:59 PM
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Harriet Hargrave has a great book on FMQ on your home machine: "Heirloom Machine Quilting". She also stresses that PRACTICE is very important. I personally hate to practice and often pay with high level of frustration!
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Old 04-06-2012, 03:20 PM
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I guess I was dumb when I started FMQ'ing with my older Singer - didn't know any better so I just went ahead and did it. I still do it. You really don't need a fancy machine to do any quilting unless you want "fancy stitches". I'll stick with my older Singer's. Right now my favorite vintage Singer for FMQ is my model 237.

Of course I would love a machine with deeper throat space. I'm drooling over a HQ Sweet Sixteen which is a 16" throat compared to the little throat space on my 237 - but - until I can come up with at least $5,000 for the HQ then my 237 works just fine.

I've also got 14 other vintage Singer's to choose from if/when I tire of my 237......

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Old 04-06-2012, 03:21 PM
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Very doable. That's how I FMQ. But discovered on my cheapy Brother works better without covering feed dogs. Check out Leah Day's website.
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Old 04-06-2012, 03:22 PM
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I FMQ on my sewing machine, but it took lots of practice before I would even attempt a quilt. I used the cheapest muslin I could find, sandwiched it and practiced over and over. Even now, if I have'nt done it for awhile, I will practice for a little while before starting a quilt. I will not do a large quilt, I only do baby quilts, tablerunners, lap quilts etc. I just don't want the hassle of handling a large quilt.
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