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Thread: How to Quilt "You've Got Mail"?

  1. #1
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    How to Quilt "You've Got Mail"?

    I've just finished piecing Jenny Doan's "You've Got Mail". Any suggestions on how to quilt it? SITD adds nothing. But also doesn't detract. But I'm not very good at it.

    It is a twin size for the Hospice House. So it needs to be durable.

    I hit this roadblock with every quilt I make.

    FMQ has never been a "friend" to me.

    I have an embroidery machine. But not sure how that helps.

    The quilting is the part of the process I could do without. Probably because I haven't mastered it.
    SVAL

  2. #2
    Super Member PenniF's Avatar
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    Hi. You haven't said what batting you're using - ie: what is the max distance for quilt lines? I always choose W&N that allows for 10". You said you don't like SITD...but how about "inside echoing"....sorry....that's what i call it....like maybe 1/4 - 1/3 inch inside the edges of the envelope and inside the flap ?
    I totally agree with you....i have never taken the time to really work on FMQ with my DSM....so straight line things are the way i go....and even though i start thinking about it when i start the quilt, sometimes i'm still puzzling the "how" even when it's been sandwiched.
    GOOD LUCK.
    Of all the things i've lost, i miss my mind the most.

  3. #3
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    I would outline stitch the envelope and stitch along the flpp edge and then do a fairly close background quilting to make the envelope puff out.

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    Super Member GailG's Avatar
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    I haven't done any FMQ on anything but 2 pillows many years ago. For me to get a quilt under my DSM is hard enough, let along if I'd be doing all that free motion. What I usually do is echo the seams or cross hatching diagonally. I've done some SITD when the fabric lends to the stitches being almost invisible.
    One step at a time, always forward.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PenniF View Post
    Hi. You haven't said what batting you're using - ie: what is the max distance for quilt lines? I always choose W&N that allows for 10". You said you don't like SITD...but how about "inside echoing"....sorry....that's what i call it....like maybe 1/4 - 1/3 inch inside the edges of the envelope and inside the flap ?
    I totally agree with you....i have never taken the time to really work on FMQ with my DSM....so straight line things are the way i go....and even though i start thinking about it when i start the quilt, sometimes i'm still puzzling the "how" even when it's been sandwiched.
    GOOD LUCK.
    Unfortunately the batting I came home with isn't what I intended to buy. It wasn't until I had it all pinned that I realized. It says 3.5 spacing. Thought I was getting the 10".
    I started sewing one seam 1/4 inch away with an off white thread. But it just didn't suit me.
    So you're suggesting inside the edges of the envelope? Might try that.

    Sometimes I won't make a quilt because of "the not knowing how to quilt it" dilemma.

    SVAL

  6. #6
    Power Poster ManiacQuilter2's Avatar
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    I look at FMQ is like driving a stick shift car. For all of you that know how to, remember how you failed to get the clutch down all the way when starting to learn. Same thing. Takes practice of going a certain speed and noticing the movement of which the machine is feeding it thru the needle. All you have to do is match the speed again and move the fabric at the same rate. One day, it is going to make sense. Just remember to NOT look at the needle but look to where you want to guide the quilt. I do like the quilt and they way they quilted it. Good Luck.

    Sval, we are our worst critics. You are probably a much better cook than I am.
    A Good Friend, like an old quilt, is both a Treasure and a Comfort

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    Super Member quiltsRfun's Avatar
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    An overall meander would probably work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ManiacQuilter2 View Post
    I look at FMQ is like driving a stick shift car. For all of you that know how to, remember how you failed to get the clutch down all the way when starting to learn. Same thing. Takes practice of going a certain speed and noticing the movement of which the machine is feeding it thru the needle. All you have to do is match the speed again and move the fabric at the same rate. One day, it is going to make sense. Just remember to NOT look at the needle but look to where you want to guide the quilt. I do like the quilt and they way they quilted it. Good Luck.

    Sval, we are our worst critics. You are probably a much better cook than I am.
    How did they quilt the quilt? Is it on the website? Not that i could do it. Probably sent it to a LAQ.

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    Quote Originally Posted by quiltsRfun View Post
    An overall meander would probably work.
    Yes, that would be great. If only.

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    My girlfriend uses yarn to decide how she quilts. She lays the top on the bed then plays with the yarn and places it on the quilt designing how she's going to do it. She uses inexpensive yarn but it helps her decide how to quilt it. After placing the yarn, she takes photos and uses them as a guide.

  11. #11
    Super Member SewExtremeSeams's Avatar
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    Recently I did my first writing on a quilt with FMQ by writing my wording on my quilted piece with a Crayola Ultra-Clean Washable pen; put my needle to end in the down position every time I stopped and started slowly to follow my cursive. It was much easier than I thought. Then, I threw it in the washer followed by the dryer and it came out nicely. Sorry I did not take photos. Hope this helps.

    Linda

    Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost but now am found, was blind, but now I see.
    [John Newton (1725-1807)]

    http://sewextremeseams.blogspot.com/

  12. #12
    Super Member quiltsRfun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SewExtremeSeams View Post
    Recently I did my first writing on a quilt with FMQ by writing my wording on my quilted piece with a Crayola Ultra-Clean Washable pen; put my needle to end in the down position every time I stopped and started slowly to follow my cursive. It was much easier than I thought. Then, I threw it in the washer followed by the dryer and it came out nicely. Sorry I did not take photos. Hope this helps.
    Yes, I do much better when my quilts are marked. Try the washable markers or a Frixion pen. Do your own design or use a stencil. Takes a little time to mark but the results are worth it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by quiltsRfun View Post
    Yes, I do much better when my quilts are marked. Try the washable markers or a Frixion pen. Do your own design or use a stencil. Takes a little time to mark but the results are worth it.
    So mark a design and then FMQ it? I don't think I have the confidence or the skill to do that. This is a twin size quilt. So bit largish to be turning all around under the needle. I don't have a UFO pile. This may be Number 1.
    I just keep reaching this road block. And am ready to give up quilting because of it. I can't send things out and pay a longarmer and I'm not happy with my own quilting. So I was doing a lot of kids quilts and just doing a decorative stitch over the seams. But I really got burned out doing those. It turned into a production like process.
    SVAL

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    You say you have an embroidery machine. . . what if you had fun with that. Do enough stitch in the ditch and block outlining to make it pretty stable, then can you do some fun tone on tone embroidery motifs? Playing on the envelope / mail idea, what if you did some faux postage stamps or seals, or phrases, like "sealed with a kiss", "air mail," "do not bend, spindle or mutilate". By keeping your embroidery thread matched to the background, it wouldn't totally overwhelm the quilt, but it adds a fun and creative touch, and I'd think it would be fun to do too -- taking the dread and drudgery out of this step of the process.

    Either that, or find a quilting buddy who loves doing the quilting step and trade off chores with her/him. I love FMQ so I do a lot of it for friends, if they help with some of my ironing, stretching and basting, tidying up.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RST View Post
    You say you have an embroidery machine. . . what if you had fun with that. Do enough stitch in the ditch and block outlining to make it pretty stable, then can you do some fun tone on tone embroidery motifs? Playing on the envelope / mail idea, what if you did some faux postage stamps or seals, or phrases, like "sealed with a kiss", "air mail," "do not bend, spindle or mutilate". By keeping your embroidery thread matched to the background, it wouldn't totally overwhelm the quilt, but it adds a fun and creative touch, and I'd think it would be fun to do too -- taking the dread and drudgery out of this step of the process.

    Either that, or find a quilting buddy who loves doing the quilting step and trade off chores with her/him. I love FMQ so I do a lot of it for friends, if they help with some of my ironing, stretching and basting, tidying up.
    that sounds like a great idea. have any idea how/where to get the phrases? Can you buy them to download? I could get it "held together" with SITD and outlining.
    Thanks. SVAL

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    I hate doing stitch in the ditch, due to all the turning of the quilt under the machine. Free motion is actually much easier because you don't have to constantly rotate everything. I have a big stack of tops because I was too intimidated to learn to FMQ. Then I started Leah Day's free motion quilt. I don't remember the name of it, but the pattern was around $35 and there are online videos for every step, a video a week for the entire year. I haven't even made it half way through the quilt, but what I did get done gave me the confidence to complete 5 queen size tops on my DM, and now I'm most of the way through my first king size. I was contemplating quitting due to my fear of FMQ but am so glad I tried her way of doing it. Good luck.

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    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tartan View Post
    I would outline stitch the envelope and stitch along the flpp edge and then do a fairly close background quilting to make the envelope puff out.
    that's just what i was thinking
    Nancy in western NY
    before you speak T.H.I.N.K.
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  18. #18
    Super Member SewExtremeSeams's Avatar
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    sval: you said, "I just keep reaching this road block. And am ready to give up quilting because of it."

    What you need to do is get over this hump/road block and then you will be on your way. Cut a swatch out that is maybe 6" x 6", make a quilt sandwich, mark it like it has been suggested and try it. Perhaps make 4 swatch sandwiches and see if a little of the fear is gone by the time you get the 4th one done. However, don't do all 4 in one day.

    I had the fear; I didn't breathe; and then one day I just crawled over the road block. It will happen if you keep trying. You will be so much happier than if you give up all together. It is like learning to ride a bicycle. I fell in the ditch several times and was never going to ride a bicycle. But, I did learn and loved riding my bicycle all over town (in the days when it was safe to do). I hope you will try.

    Last edited by SewExtremeSeams; 05-21-2015 at 04:58 PM.

    Linda

    Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost but now am found, was blind, but now I see.
    [John Newton (1725-1807)]

    http://sewextremeseams.blogspot.com/

  19. #19
    RST
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    I have several fonts on my non-embroidery machine. I can stitch words in a circle using the circle attachment (bernina). I'm not aware of any products on the market like what I described -- that would be the fun of it. you could do something completely original and creative.

    Or not.

    You could also consider doing edge to edge wavy lines 3 inches apart and be done with it.

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    Thanks for all the encouragement. I did it. I made a couple samples and have been playing with this attachment I didn't know I had. It's called an echo quilting foot to be used with the feed dogs down. It's clear and round with lines and circles on it. So you can guide it along either a seam or another row of stitching. Not doing too badly for just starting out.
    BABY STEPS.
    Should be pretty good at it by the time I get the quilt done.
    SVAL

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by sval View Post
    Thanks for all the encouragement. I did it. I made a couple samples and have been playing with this attachment I didn't know I had. It's called an echo quilting foot to be used with the feed dogs down. It's clear and round with lines and circles on it. So you can guide it along either a seam or another row of stitching. Not doing too badly for just starting out.
    BABY STEPS.


    Should be pretty good at it by the time I get the quilt done.
    SVAL
    UPDATE: Wow. I have a new found sense of amazement for anyone who can FMQ with any degree of skill. It's tough. I certainly don't expect to be good at it right away. But what a mess. I had no idea how difficult it is to guide the cloth with any degree of accuracy.
    I need this quilt before the end of time. And that's how much practice it's going to take to feel comfortable using my FMQ abilities( or lack there of) on anything to be given away.

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    Since you don't like the quilting part of the process.....time to find a local, reasonably priced longarmer.....and edge to edge design for that pattern - see MSQC tute - would be fine........

  23. #23
    Super Member SewExtremeSeams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sval View Post
    UPDATE: Wow. I have a new found sense of amazement for anyone who can FMQ with any degree of skill. It's tough. I certainly don't expect to be good at it right away. But what a mess. I had no idea how difficult it is to guide the cloth with any degree of accuracy.
    I need this quilt before the end of time. And that's how much practice it's going to take to feel comfortable using my FMQ abilities( or lack there of) on anything to be given away.

    LOL (definitely not at you). I wish I had before and after photos but when I first started my FMQ was a mess. I take it slow and am gaining more and more control every time. Funny thing was, at first, I kept forgetting to move the quilt... I was forgetting I was the 'feed dogs'. Maybe you won't master it on this quilt but you will master it if you keep trying.

    Linda

    Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost but now am found, was blind, but now I see.
    [John Newton (1725-1807)]

    http://sewextremeseams.blogspot.com/

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