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Thread/Tute idea on FMQ

Thread/Tute idea on FMQ

Old 12-09-2008, 05:38 PM
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If this already exists somewhere on the forum, you may feel free to scold me now.
But I was thinking, there are so many of us, especially beginners, who struggle with FMQ.
I thought it would be great if those of you who've mastered the art would share their tips, tricks and tools that have helped them get better at it.

For instance, what kind of foot do you use, or do the gloves really help, etc.
I know I've seen some of this info scattered about but would really love to find it all on one thread.
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Old 12-09-2008, 06:26 PM
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what is FMQ?
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Old 12-09-2008, 06:49 PM
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I think it's free motion quilting
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Old 12-09-2008, 07:56 PM
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I wouldnt be of any help either since it took me 5 seconds to figure FMQ...
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Old 12-09-2008, 08:54 PM
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Maybe we should put a sticky in the tip/resouces forum
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Old 12-10-2008, 06:07 AM
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Sorry everyone. FMQ=free motion quilting. I'd seen that abbreviation used here before so I was just thinking... when in rome and all that.
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Old 12-10-2008, 06:46 AM
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I have just been experimenting myself in FMQ so I have much practice to go before I master it, but having fun in the process. I hear that the gloves do help. I don't have the gloves yet, but I hope to get a pair in the new year as my friend and I are planning to start a queen size trapunto quilt each! So I have LOTS of FMQ ahead of me!!!
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Old 12-10-2008, 07:01 AM
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i am currently quilting (free motion) a lap size and I have to say - the gloves are my #1 MUST HAVE when quilting. I've FMQed all but one of my quilts (i've made probably 15) and I will not do it without my gloves.

The one I am working on now has a lot of stops and starts so I need to take the gloves off to snip threads etc and a few times I have forgotten to put them back on. 10 seconds into it, I'm wondering why my stitches are so uneven, why the quilt is not moving smoothly, etc. And I figure out that it is because my hands keep slipping on the fabric and I don't have my gloves on!

I use a darning foot with the clear toe but a small hole, not the big open toe. The reason I do that is to keep the fabric smoothed out as much as possible around the needle. I've found that the larger the opening, the more the fabric tends to "bubble" a little around the needle. Since I have switched to a darning foot with a small opening, I haven't had any puckering while quilting.

Another tip would be to practice a bit before you start on your quilt, even if you have taken only a 3 hour break from it. Also good for checking your thread length and tension. And, if you are using a decorative stitch, that is a good way to check that you actually have the right one chosen (yes, I have learned this from experience!)! I try to equate it to running or exercizing. I would not jump right into full speed workouts without a little bit of a warm up first! When you are warming up, make a small quilt sandwich and practice writing your name or drawing a tree or the actual design you are quilting - gets the shoulders warmed up and the kinks out before you tackle your quilt!

Happy sewing!
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Old 12-10-2008, 07:22 AM
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Thank you for the tips! I have 3 quilt tops ready to FMQ but I have been afraid to start! I have done some practicing but have a looonnnggg way to go!
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Old 12-12-2008, 08:17 AM
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I have recent taught myself to do free motion stipple. Have a look at www.sharonschambernetwork.com - an excellent tutorial. I also learned the value of sticking some teflon sheet onto the machine (with masking tape) with a hole cut in for the needle. On line I fould a Supreme Free Motion Slider which would have cost me about $40 to have sent to UK. However here in the UK we have a store called Lakeland and they sell teflon sheet under the name of "magic carpet" for far less, about £5 I think. Teflon sheets are also called craft sheets and I found these on line also but not very big. The teflon just takes all the effort out and you get nice smooth lines and curves.
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