Take the stunning Space dust quilt by Tula Tink that was quilted by Angela Walters. I guess if you were a really good FMQ quilter you could do this kind of detail on a normal machine but that would take much, much to long (for me anyway).
But there is one FMQ pattern that I absolutely love and I am determined just for that single pattern to learn FMQ. The pattern in question is the continuous eight which is very often used by the great Denyse Schmidt and can be seen in her books and in fact on the cover of her latest book.
|Denyse Schmidt new book|
I love the simplicity of it and that it is an actual pattern rather than meandering lines. Although Denyse's quilts are mostly long-arm quilted I believe that this is a pattern that could be done fairly easily on a good home machine such as my Janome Horizon 7700. The machine has a very good FMQ foot after all.
Another reason why I have not had a go at FMQ is that I always thought it to be VERY difficult. I have conveyed this often to the lovely Trudi and she responded on many occasions that it actually wasn't difficult at all. So when she told me the last which is already more than five month ago again, I resolved to have a go at it.
So my plan is to improve over the cause of this year until I actually will be able to do the pattern on a sofa sized quilt. Tall order, I know but I do hope you support me in my endeavor and if you have any advice regarding FMQ or regarding this particular pattern then please let me know.
This below is my very first attempt which was merely some meandering to get used to the fact that you actually have to move the fabric under the needle. I found this really odd at first.
With my second attempt I went straight into the eight pattern; first with a white thread that I later changed to black when I realized this won't photograph to well. The eights are still very wonky and all over the place but I was happy that I managed to actually make continuous eighths in the first place !
My third try is yet another improvement. I first sewed with the white thread and then with black on top of this. The white thread is a Gueterman thread that is a little thicker than the black 50w Aurifil and therefore the eights with the white thread look actually better. The 50 w is to thin and the stitches seem to look like a continuous line rather than distinct stitches. Of course this could also be a problem of tension but for now I think I will work better with a 40w or 30 w thread.
Whilst the eights are still wonky, I nonetheless was rather surprised and pleased that I actually managed to do them in a fairly straight line. At first I drew a 3 inch line but later on did it without the lines which worked just as well and in fact better.
My fourth attempt shows not much improvement to the third. I think now it is a case of practicing regularly. What surprised me the most though is that I actually managed to do all of this within a space of a few hours rather than days, so there is hope even for me (well I hope anyway...)
Has any of you done this eight pattern and if you have what is your experience ?