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Thread: Free motion

  1. #1
    Junior Member Tamara's Avatar
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    Okay I want to start doing FMQ what do you think I need to do first?
    I got a darting attachment for my machine is there anything eles that I need?

  2. #2
    Super Member katier825's Avatar
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    In addition to the darning foot, you should make up several practice sandwiches and just start practicing. If you make them fat quarter size, they are easy to handle. Once you get comfortable, try on a small quilt or wall hanging. I found that at the beginning, I was more comfortable using thread that blended, so the mistakes weren't so noticeable. I've only recently started using contrasting threads.

    Have fun!

  3. #3
    Super Member babyfireo4's Avatar
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    Idk what you would need (since i don't have free motion machine quite yet) I was watching a tutorial to get an idea of what it takes and the best idea I saw was to make 12 1/2 square sandwiches to practice one. It's supposed to get you used to it and not mess up a beautiful quilt and if you like them when your done they can be made into a quilt as you go quilt. hope that helps :)

  4. #4
    Super Member ssgramma's Avatar
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    Lot's of info here:

    http://www.freemotionquilting.blogspot.com/

    Just scroll down - it's recipe day.

  5. #5
    Super Member mommamac's Avatar
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    I hear you need patience & a sense of humor! I also read on the board that playing country music will give you a sense of rhythm to get your hands/feet in sync.
    I'm taking a FMQ class Sunday so might have more suggestions after then.

  6. #6
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    Lots of practice. I always play music too. Just works best for me. Relax and breath. I use quilting gloves too. I started with fons and porters quilting gloves but find gardening gloves work too.

  7. #7
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    Practice, doodle on paper, but instead of moving thepencil lay both hands on the paper and move the paper. This method helped me alot, and I also made small sandwhices 9x12 to do my practice. :lol:

  8. #8
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    Practice, doodle on paper, but instead of moving thepencil lay both hands on the paper and move the paper. This method helped me alot, and I also made small sandwhices 9x12 to do my practice. :lol:
    That should of been one hand on paper :oops:

  9. #9
    Super Member feffertim's Avatar
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    I just started too and found that I really needed gloves because I kept licking my fingers so that I could grip the fabric. A lot of people also told me to have a glass of wine before I start, and they were right, it did help (except I made a bloody mary instead). My first attempts were dreadful, but I am slowly getting it.

  10. #10
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    What a great idea! Although I'm sure it works better moving the paper with just one hand instead of two. I was trying to figure out how to hold the pencil in my teeth. Blessings.

  11. #11
    Super Member DogHouseMom's Avatar
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    I'm a self taught quilter from piecing to FMQ. I bought a book of 9" blocks to make into Pot Holders to learn everything from piecing to quilting. They were perfect learning size. Needless to say everyone at work got Pot Holders for Christmas that year :)

  12. #12
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    not sure what a darting attachment is or what you would use it for, but where freemotion quilting is concerned what you need most is a stack of practice (sandwiches) it takes lots of practice to get a flow. start small and work your way up to larger and larger.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Hen3rietta's Avatar
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    You'll need a machine that you can drop the feed dogs on. There are ways around a machine that doesn't have that feature, but it's a lot easier if it does.

  14. #14
    Junior Member Cheshire Cat's Avatar
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    Is it just me or is it really funny that alcohol consumption is part of the technique? lol!!!

  15. #15
    Super Member Lisa_wanna_b_quilter's Avatar
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    http://www.patsythompsondesigns.com/free-video/

    I found these videos very helpful. I'm still bad at it, but I understand what I should be doing.

  16. #16
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    At some point you have to take a deep breath and just do it! and accept that your first attempts will not be perfect, but they will improve.

  17. #17
    Super Member babyfireo4's Avatar
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    I think it's funny to! if it works it works ;)

  18. #18
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa_wanna_b_quilter
    http://www.patsythompsondesigns.com/free-video/

    I found these videos very helpful. I'm still bad at it, but I understand what I should be doing.
    I just got back from a Hyperquilting class at a quilt shop. It was great fun! I had looked at the Hyperquilting book before the class and at first glance I didn't think it had much info, but after taking the class I can see where each 'lesson' is really broken down into manageable steps.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by sunkistmi
    What a great idea! Although I'm sure it works better moving the paper with just one hand instead of two. I was trying to figure out how to hold the pencil in my teeth. Blessings.
    :lol: My laptop is now wearing taco salad. :lol:

  20. #20
    Super Member Stitchnripper's Avatar
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    All of the above. Practice, practice, practice. also, my machine doesn't drop the feed dogs so I set the stitch length to zero so the feed dogs don't move and don't have a problem.

  21. #21
    Super Member LivelyLady's Avatar
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    Quilting gloves really make a difference...and as others have said, practice on sandwiches. The hardest part for me was trying to relax, and that makes a world of difference too.
    I know you'll have fun :D Enjoy :D

  22. #22
    Member ladyslipper's Avatar
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    What is a darting attachment? That is something I have never heard about. Maybe that (and the wine idea) is what I have been doing wrong.

  23. #23
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    You have gotten a lot of good suggestions. Since the biggest key seems to be PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PATIENCE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE, I thought I would share my experiences.
    1. you definitely need those quilter's gloves. They really reduce the stress on the body and helps move the fabric.
    2. I use basting spray, even on queensize quilts. I actually think it works better than pinning and those little tack guns. If you have a big design wall, it would be easier to spray baste. First get the back smooth, then spray, then put on the batting starting at the top and working your way out and down, then do the same with your top.
    3. Start in the center and quilt it in quarters like you would handquilt.
    4. Always pull your thread from the bottom when you start.
    5. Have a lot of bobbins ready.
    6. Coats and Clarks machine quilting thread is probably the least expensive but it does leave a lot of lint in your machine and you should clean your machine before and after your quilting.
    7. Do a few wall hangings and lap quilts first. Depending on your machine, you may have to work with your tension, etc. to get your stitches right.
    8. Use a print backing that won't show your mistakes as easily.
    9. Don't worry about what it looks like. Just do it. Your next one will be better with.......practice.
    10. This probably should have been number 1. Don't use polyester batting. It doesn't lay flat. For FMQ it is better to use cotton batting or cotton batting with a little bit of polyester. It is just way too hard to FMQ on polyester, especially when you are a beginner.

    I can't wait to see your first one.

  24. #24
    Senior Member craftyone27's Avatar
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    I'm pretty sure that the "darting" foot should have been "darning " foot. I have never heard of a darting foot - but a darning foot and lowered fed dogs are keys to FMQ. Practice , practice, practice - oh and btw a little wine couldn't hurt!

  25. #25
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    Texaspam's post covered it very thoroughly, but I would strongly encourage the quilters gloves. They give you so much more control. And, as everyone else says, practice, practice, practice! Once you actually get going, you'll wonder why it was so intimidating.

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