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Thread: Need advice quilting leaves

  1. #1
    Super Member jillaine's Avatar
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    I attach below a photo of a border that I'm trying to quilt. As you see, the border fabric is of leaves.

    I want to quilt around each leaf. I started hand-quilting, which allows me the greatest control, but I cannot come close to neither an acceptable stitch gauge nor an acceptable rhythm; in addition, it will take more time than I have (quilt to be auctioned 22 May; it's lap size and there are about five yards of this border), and I'm not sure that either my eyes or my hands are "young" enough to get through this process. (P.S. I've never hand-quilted anything before.)

    On the machine, I have only ever done stitch-in-the-ditch with a standard foot. Last night I attempted to attach a generic walking foot (purchased at Hancocks recently) to my 1970s Monkey Wards machine; doesn't fit. I have other feet for this machine, but not a walking foot. There is a "foot" with only a "circle" through which the needle would go.

    I'm thinking of trying free-motion but know nothing about it. And as I look at the pattern, I fear that I'd have to do a lot of stop-start as I jump from one group of leaves to another.

    Basically I think I'm in over my head (not that that's stopped me in the past) and need advice from quilters here.

    Sending to a free-arm quilter is not an option. a) I have no way to compensate her; b) my piecing on this leaves (ahem) much to be desired in places (i.e., I'm embarrassed to have anyone else look THAT closely at it); c) I doubt there's time.

    Suggestions? I really do want to quilt around these leaves.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
    Super Member sewcrafty's Avatar
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    What about doing a lattice pattern, so it looks like the leaves are climbing on a trellis?

  3. #3
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    a walking foot will not help you quilt around those leaves- a walking foot is good for stitch in the ditch/cross-hatching, ect- straight lines.
    a free motion foot (also called a darning foot) is used for free motion quilting.
    make a (practice) sandwich about 12" square, put a few leaves on it and practice. free motion quilting takes some practice before it looks good enough for a quilt up for auction.
    if you do not have a darning foot do you have a clear foot so you can see where you are going? that would help=
    also with a walking foot the feed dogs are kept up- used-
    with free motion the feed dogs are put down- not used- which allows you move the fabric sandwich around

  4. #4
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    Here is a great link on how to do FMQ leaves:

    http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=...quilting+vines

  5. #5
    Super Member DA Mayer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gal288
    Here is a great link on how to do FMQ leaves:

    http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=...quilting+vines
    That is a very simple leaf vine if you leave out the center of the leaf. The round circle foot is probably the darning foot if it has a spring on the arm above the foot. You drop your feed dogs, lay your hands flat on the sandwhich, put the pedal to the metal (fast foot speed) and move your hands slow. I wear gloves (garden gloves work). Make a piece of your scraps your practice guide and use the pattern above to show you how to get around the leaves and connect them. Good Luck and the fabric is great for a quilting pattern. My sister's and my first machines were the same one as yours.

  6. #6
    dd
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    How about an old fashioned quilting bee? Ask some friends over who quilt and ask them to help you finish this in time for the auction.

  7. #7
    Super Member jillaine's Avatar
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    Thanks; yes, I have a darning foot. I've also been watching Patsern this morning:

    http://www.youtube.com/user/patsern

    and next I'm off to Peg's link to FMQ leaves.

    Thanks!

  8. #8
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    I would find a stencil with a leaf pattern. I wouldn't try and quilt around the printed leaves, just do a leaf pattern in the border to compliment the print. I also like the lattice idea. You can use a walking foot for the lattice, but you need a darning foot to FMQ. If you get a stencil, you can hand quilt. Beautiful fabrics, would like to see the whole quilt when you are done!

  9. #9
    Super Member jillaine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dd
    How about an old fashioned quilting bee? Ask some friends over who quilt and ask them to help you finish this in time for the auction.
    Ahem. The only "friends" I have who quilt are... you all... I actually don't know one local person who quilts. (play sappy violin music here...)

    I'm going to try FMQ on a 12" test patch and see just how bad I am... (oops... my feed dog switch appears to be jammed... arrghhh)

    Let you know how it goes. In the meantime, some add'l photos of the quilt, along with inspectors. (Sorry for the photo quality.)

    Middle-east rug/tile inspired quilt for fundraiser
    Name:  Attachment-192023.jpe
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Size:  54.6 KB

    Who's cuter? Me or the quilt?
    Name:  Attachment-192024.jpe
Views: 169
Size:  57.5 KB

    Team Inspector hard at work
    Name:  Attachment-192025.jpe
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Size:  63.1 KB

  10. #10
    saf
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    Quote Originally Posted by jillaine
    Quote Originally Posted by dd
    How about an old fashioned quilting bee? Ask some friends over who quilt and ask them to help you finish this in time for the auction.
    Ahem. The only "friends" I have who quilt are... you all... I actually don't know one local person who quilts. (play sappy violin music here...)

    I'm going to try FMQ on a 12" test patch and see just how bad I am... (oops... my feed dog switch appears to be jammed... arrghhh)

    Let you know how it goes. In the meantime, some add'l photos of the quilt, along with inspectors. (Sorry for the photo quality.)
    No suggestions but love the quilt - not sure that this is what they meant about a quilting bee though. :lol:

  11. #11
    saf
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    Quote Originally Posted by jillaine
    Quote Originally Posted by dd
    How about an old fashioned quilting bee? Ask some friends over who quilt and ask them to help you finish this in time for the auction.
    Ahem. The only "friends" I have who quilt are... you all... I actually don't know one local person who quilts. (play sappy violin music here...)

    I'm going to try FMQ on a 12" test patch and see just how bad I am... (oops... my feed dog switch appears to be jammed... arrghhh)

    Let you know how it goes. In the meantime, some add'l photos of the quilt, along with inspectors. (Sorry for the photo quality.)
    No suggestions but love the quilt - not sure that this is what they meant about a quilting bee though. :lol:

  12. #12
    Super Member pollyjvan9's Avatar
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    Put your darning foot on, drop your feed dogs and then try a simple loop de loop. This is easier than a leaf or vine and almost always looks good. You can practice with a pencil and paper to get the feel for the design. I think you could probably learn to do this in just a couple of days. Remember when FMQ move your hands slowly and run the machine fast.

    Loop de loop
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  13. #13
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    Love the inspectors! Quilt is beautiful, can't wait to see your FMQ!

  14. #14
    Super Member jillaine's Avatar
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    (Can't get my feed dogs to drop; dogs are clearly annoyed that there is no canine inspector in the house.)

  15. #15
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    If you want to hand quilt the leaves, just do a few of the leaves that connect and are near the center of the border.
    Love the pattern and quilt.

  16. #16
    Super Member pollyjvan9's Avatar
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    Since you can't drop the feeddogs can you reduce the pressure on the pressure foot? If so, you can still free motion quilt.

    By the way, I forgot to tell you that is a really great quilt!

  17. #17
    Senior Member gellybean402's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sewcrafty
    What about doing a lattice pattern, so it looks like the leaves are climbing on a trellis?
    Ooo great idea!

  18. #18
    Super Member jillaine's Avatar
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    If I can't fix the machine (I *really* want to FMQ around the leaves), I'll try the lattice. Thanks!

    And hopefully, I'll get a decent photo to share of the whole quilt.

  19. #19
    Super Member jillaine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pollyv9
    Since you can't drop the feeddogs can you reduce the pressure on the pressure foot? If so, you can still free motion quilt.

    By the way, I forgot to tell you that is a really great quilt!
    Thanks, Polly. I will try reducing the pressure on the pressure foot. Still learning about this "new" machine. (Had it for a month.) I swear I've learned more about quilting and machines in the almost three months I've been on this board than in my 40 years of (off-and-on) sewing.

    -- Jillaine

  20. #20
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    I've found that I don't really have to lower the feed dogs to free motion. Well, actually they won't lower. My machine is pretty old and I just have a plate that covers them. Anyway, you could try free motioning without lowering the feed dogs. I just did a whole bunch of free motion feathers that way.

  21. #21
    Super Member jitkaau's Avatar
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    I would free motion around the leaves and veins and then do close stipple or meander in the background spaces. There would be no need to stop and start - it could be continuous. If you have not sandwiched it yet, extra padding in the leaves (ala trapunto) could add oomph as well. Happy quilting!

  22. #22
    Senior Member olebat's Avatar
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    Jillaine, nice job on the cornerstones. Even though you work fast, I agree that the loop-de-loops would be a reasonable way to go, capturing a leaf cluster, rather than individual leaves.

  23. #23
    Super Member Aurora's Avatar
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    I handquilt and would most likely quilt around the groups of leaves rather than individual leaves and perhaps quilt vanes in some leaves in the each group.

  24. #24
    dd
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    I think I remember reading somewhere, sometime, that you could tape an index card over the feed dogs if you couldn't lower yours and that would keep them from grabbing your fabric. I would think that you would still need to eliminate the pressure from the presser foot so you could move the fabric. I know I have a different throat plate for one of my machines that covers the feed dogs but they don't lower.

    I still like the trellis idea.

  25. #25
    Junior Member Mary L Booth's Avatar
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    I would outline the leaves and stiple the light green around the leaf, very pretty quilt

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