Tag Archives: quilting on a domestic sewing machine

Addendum to the Beveled Quilt Template Review

This is an addendum to the beveled quilt template review I did this past summer.
About a month ago I got an email from one of my online quilting friends. She said she ordered  1/4” quilt templates from Teryl Loy Enterprises and they arrived without the beveled edge. I emailed Teryl to find out what happened.

a picture of the beveled inside edge template
1/4″ Beveled quilt template by Teryl Loy Enterprises

Teryl said that she has backed away from beveling her 1/4” quilt templates primarily from a cost/ business standpoint ( I do believe that her 3/8” templates still have the bevel). With the availability of sewing machine companies offering ruler feet, after market companies (Westalee and Accents in Design’s Clarity foot) and now APQS putting out a new re-design of their ruler foot, they feel that 90% of quilters may not desire/ need the 1/4” beveled edge quilt template . I am sure it is very costly to manufacture these templates. Any good business person has to weight cost to demand ratios, so I totally understand that too.

If there are quilters that want 1/4”  beveled quilt templates  , Teryl said she could do that on a special order basis with a slight surcharge.  Just give her a call (don’t try to order online). The 1/4” circle templates with a beveled edge are still on Teryl Loy Enterprises website ,  I would just verify availability before ordering.

I am currently working on a quilt that I am doing a chevron pattern. I would have loved the 1/4″ beveled right angle template to get that extra clearance to the right of my ruler foot.  Teryl’s website says the 3/8″ quilt templates are not compatible with HandiQuilter . Consequently I suspect that they will not be compatible with my current APQS ruler foot and domestic sewing machines.
So,  as sit-down quilters do you think a bevel would make any difference to your clearance around your ruler foot? Or is the clearance issues largely related to your machine and not so much your foot (if so what machine are you using).

I am anxiously tracking the arrival of my new APQS ruler foot. Hopefully I will be getting great clearances to the right of my foot using a standard 1/4″ template.
Happy Quilting!

Free Motion Swirling Flowers


I am finally carving out a bit of time up in my sewing room. After much doodling I decided on doing some free motion swirling flowers in the white background areas. I used a modified flower embroidery design in the center of each block and I was looking for something that  just “felt right” . Two of some of the talented people I follow for free motion quilting inspiration are Lori Kennedy at the theinboxjaunt.com and Patsy Thompson’s wonderful tutorials on YouTube, her site www.Patsythompsondesigns.com and both of their Craftsy classes . They are two of the most talented, creative quilters out there. I feel that the free motion swirling flowers were a direct result of Lori’s Dizzy Daisy motif and Patsy Thompson’s Plumify technique  from her Ultimate Free-Motion Feathers  on Craftsy . I love the movement in Patsy’s Plumify and at the same time love all the swirls thrown in on Lori’s Dizzy Daisy. The addition of the swirls, “Cs” and echo quilting make this an easy fill that is so pretty.

a picture ofFree motion flower swirls done in 40 wt Glide
I normally try to change the direction of the swirls, but my camera battery was dying while I was stitching……just too much distraction!

I thought I would do a quick tutorial on what I’m currently doing on this quilt……before time passes and I have to scratch my head and figure out the motif again! I will also add the drawing to my notebook of quick  designs that I like. It’s amazing when you thumb through how many you forget about!
I am loving the texture that the quilting is bringing to the white background areas on my quilt. Is it quilted to death?…..You bet!…. But if that isn’t your thing, simply change up the scale to a larger motif and cover even more real-estate on your quilt more quickly.

a picture of the free motion flower swirls and the texture it creates on my quilt
Close up of the texture this motif has on my white on white background

I hope all of you guys are getting in some great quilting time- I have sure missed talking with you all!


Review of Free-Motion Quilting Idea Book

This week’s post is a review of  Free-Motion Quilting Idea Book by Amanda Murphy. I hadn’t heard of or seen this book before, but came upon it one night while I was surfing the web.

a picture of Free-Motion Quilting Idea Book By Amanda Murphy
Free-Motion Quilting Idea Book By Amanda Murphy

As a side note, a quilting buddy shared an internet shopping tip a month or so ago. She said to put the things that you are interested in buying your cart and wait 24 hours before you return to purchase. A lot of the times, 24 hours later, you may feel like you can live without that wonderful gizmo or whatever… (she also just informed me that doesn’t apply to online sales – LOL- in that case you can wait an hour or so to see if you feel the same about it – thanks Kathy!  ,you have saved me a lot of $$). This tip alone is worth reading this post if you practice it!
Anyway, back to the book 🙂 .  I read the glowing reviews on Amazon and dropped it in my cart…. playing by the rules not to purchase for at least 24 hours. 
I happened to be going to my quilting group the next day and asked another friend if she had the book and if she liked it. She equally gave it a good review , so it got moved from my shopping cart to a purchase -she’s a talented quilter in her own right so I respect her endorsements (how many books have you purchased sight unseen only to feel lukewarm about when you held it in your hot little hand?- more than I care to admit!).

Now that my book has come (don’t you love getting packages in the mail ??!!) and I have had time to really give it a good look, I have to say that Amanda Murphy did a good job. This book takes a lot of traditionally pieced blocks and shows you several different ways to quilt them – with simple doable motifs. This is a great book for both beginners or those that have been free motion quilting a while and just need some inspiration ( come on….we have all been there…your quilt is done and you have been looking at it forever….and ….nada…nope…nothing..).
Amanda organizes her ideas by indexing by quilt element (blocks like churn dash or pin wheel) or designs by family (loops, back and forth etc) . This makes it easy for you to find inspiration for a specific block, or just go with a “feel” like….something swirly or hearts.
Many times Amanda breaks the block design down step by step showing how she would stitch the design out. In fairness I have to say, some her photos of the quilts are a little hard to see the quilting, but the real emphasis of the book is her drawings /diagrams. Her book has 155 “mix and match” designs and 30 blocks plus some sashing and border ideas.
The Free-Motion Quilting Idea Book will go on my bookshelf alongside by doodle book and a few other  late night shopping acquisitions that I keep to jar my memory when I am having that “deer in the headlights” moment and can’t think what to quilt next.
( click on the link above to go to her blog to get a preview)
So….are you guys late night or daytime impulse shoppers??

Have you had a recent quilt that has just left you scratching your head wondering what to quilt on it??
Hoping your bobbin is always half full,

Free Motion Quilting Stitch Regulation

Free motion quilting stitch regulation can be a frustrating thing when you are just getting started. The popularity of sewing machine companies selling  sit down quilting  machines or DSM  pushing “stitch regulators”  plays on the premise that you can more easily side step the learning curve to control your machine.
Lets face it – there’s no free lunch- we all love any shortcut that we can get, whether it’s quilting , driving , cleaning…. or weight loss for that matter, I am willing to pay good money to get the end point quicker !  🙂 LOL
I am not going to sit here and say that there isn’t times that I wish,  as sit down quilter,  we had the high quality stitch regulation that some standup longarm machines have. But the fact is, even longarmers prefer to go un-stitch regulated when doing certain types of designs. The stitch regulator can put  “drag” on some curvy designs.
From the sit down machine stand point- I think that stitch regulators have a way to go before they are offering a comparable product to what is available in the stand up market. The last quilt show I went to , people were lined up to have a go at the sit down longarms – especially if they thought they may get some stitch regulation thrown in for good measure. It is a market that technology is making inroads , but the cost associated with it- for the quality of the stitch, isn’t there yet for the sit down quilter ( IMHO).
If you look at  some very successful sit down quilters ( Diane Gaudynski, Harriet Hargrave, Lori Kennedy and Cindy Needham to name a few) none of these gals used stitch regulation- and their work couldn’t be more beautiful.

I had  decided to do this video to add to the skill builder bucket for people who are new to free motion quilting and struggling with your stitch length. This video almost didn’t happen- if you look at my quilt sandwich I had stitched around all over it….I videoed this so many times it wasn’t funny….. the phone rang…the dogs were barking…..the UPS man came… more barking… (If your looking for it you can hear one of my girls let out a growly moan half way through-she talks like that  :)…I was running out of quilt sandwich….enough already… if I burned through that sandwich , I was going to call it a day- it was supposed to be a quickie!!! lol).

Oh yeah , back to stitch regulation- I am not saying that you have to “live” at this one speed in your FMQ world forever- quite the opposite. But as you are striving to gain control of of your stitch length, limiting one of the variables( your machine speed) as you learn to control how fast you move your hands simplifies things a bit. As your skills improve, so will the need to vary your speed with increasingly more complex designs.   But you will have an “ear” for your machine and where you are comfortable quilting most of the time. I know this has been a technique that helped me- I hope it helps others get to their “happy place “ quicker in their FMQ journey!
Give it a try….what do you have to lose…it’s just a quilt sandwich !
Let me know if it works for you…
Happy Stitching,