Weekend Quilting


You know, I don’t particularly enjoy the quilting part of quilting. It’s definitely my least favorite part of the process. I always feel like I’m wrestling with the quilt. Like I’m trying to make it do something it doesn’t want to do. It reminds me of trying to get my almost-2-year-old to sit in her high chair when she doesn’t want to eat. My tops don’t want to be quilted, you guys! “Now get in that sewing machine, and stay there! Allow yourself to be quilted or you’re going for a time-out, young lady! Why do you have to be quilted? Because I said so!”

That being said, I spent the weekend quilting my Fall Equinox top, and I’m really happy with how it turned out. It’s far from perfect, but I think it’s my best home-machine quilting effort to date.

No, I’m still not over the wavy line quilting. : ) I really love how it softens up such a geometric design. And actually, I feel like this squiggly quilting is a baby step toward free motion quilting. Even though I was using my walking foot, I still needed to have some control over how fast I was pushing the quilt through the machine. The slower I went, the more dramatically the lines wiggled. So I think (at least, I hope) I started to get a feel for the rhythm of it, more easily recognizing when the quilt is dragging too much, etc.

But don’t worry, you won’t see this wavy line quilting on everything I do. My machine has a lot of decorative stitches—so I have plenty of other available reasons to avoid free motion quilting for some time to come!

Edited to add: This post includes an explanation of how I did the wavy line quilting (scroll to the bottom of the post). Just use your machine’s wavy line decorative stitch – so simple! Love it!

I’m linking up to Sew Modern Monday – go check out Megan’s blog to see what everybody else is up to.

21 replies
  1. Lee Heinrich
    Lee Heinrich says:

    oh I love the wavy line quilting! I haven't tried that yet, but I think I will have to. I think its funny how everyone has their favorite part of the quilting process, my favorite part is the actual quilting its self, I heart free motion quilting 🙂 but I despise binding, particularly hand sewing. I've taken to machine sewing down my binding, which makes it slightly more tolerable, but still my least favorite part!

  2. BaileyGirl5
    BaileyGirl5 says:

    I know just how you feel about the machine quilting. This turned out great though and I love the waviness 🙂

    On my last quilt even the wavy line was funky on the back so I finally bit the bullet and just hand quilted it. And guess what …. I love it! So relaxing to do on the couch and the total opposite of stressful. That said, if I could get a quilt to turn out as nice as this one I'd go back to machine quilting in a second!

  3. Jennifer
    Jennifer says:

    Your quilting is just beautiful!

    I'm laughing though because I just blogged about loving the quilting part of making a quilt; especially the free motion quilting!

    I love how we all make quilts yet we are all still different…

    Jennifer 🙂

  4. Marjorie's Busy Corner
    Marjorie's Busy Corner says:

    Lee…you have nothing to worry about…your quilting looks great…that is why I hand quilt..I can't stand all the material in my sewing machine….now if I had a long arm it might be different…but I don't. I enjoy the relaxation of hand quilting….nothing to hold but the needle and thread…lol
    But it turned out beautiful

  5. Lee Heinrich
    Lee Heinrich says:

    Your wavy quilting is really beautiful.
    I feel the same about quilting, but hope that someday (maybe with a new sewing machine?!) I will get better at free motion quilting and love it. We'll see. For now I'll definitely have to try what you've done here!

  6. Becky
    Becky says:

    Cute! I use decorative stitches sometimes too, but my machine only has a few 🙁 I hope to get a better machine some day! FMQ-ing really did grown on me! I like it a lot, but I think planning and piecing is still my favorite part of quilting. Binding hands down is my least favorite.

  7. Elizabeth D.
    Elizabeth D. says:

    I really love this, I keep meaning to try it, only to remember after I finish quilting something. Maybe I need to make myself a sign or something. Maybe I'm in the minority, but I really love FMQ'ing, it's relaxing to me. It's taken a lot of practice for it to become truly enjoyable, but even when I look back at the quilts that I thought I quilted hideously, they're really not bad at all. I can't wait to see how you wind up binding this one – great job!

  8. Live a Colorful Life
    Live a Colorful Life says:

    This made me laugh because I just commented on Jennifer's blog (after she said quilting was her favorite part…really???) and read your comment about how it is NOT your favorite part, and then coming here and reading your post…well, I'm totally with you on this one! And the imagery of putting your quilt top in time out made me laugh out loud! So anyway…I'm totally going to try the wavy line quilting. It looks awesome. My cousin is a PHENOMENAL longarm quilter and she never does straight line quilting, always wavy lines. Your quilt looks awesome. You give me hope that I can actually learn to machine quilt this year. It's on my list of things to do because (a) I want to learn and (b) my budget no longer allows me to send them out…at least not if want new fabric!

    P.S. sorry I wrote a book here…

  9. Pieces of Sunshine
    Pieces of Sunshine says:

    The larger the quilt the harder to wrestle it too. Your quilting looks lovely. I taught myself quilting just over 12 months ago and used free motion quilting on the outer edging, not knowing it may be tricky. I enjoyed trying something totally new and loved the effect.
    I'm enjoying the relaxation of hand quilting my current quilt. Binding by hand is one of my favourite bits of quilting.

  10. Danielle
    Danielle says:

    Your quilting is absolutely beautiful! Please share with us how you did this? I'd love to give it a try. I need to break out of the straight line or stippling rut.

  11. Lee Heinrich
    Lee Heinrich says:

    I love the colors of that quilt! I also love the wavy line quilting! 🙂 my first "free motioned" quilt was actually a bit like wavy lines crossed with a free motion stipple. I just didn't get the hang of how to move around the quilt on that first try. It still looked great but not quite proper. lol. Keep working it comes with time/practice!

  12. Sara
    Sara says:

    I hate quilting too. It feels like wrestling. I like the analogy you used, lol! I am really really really really loving the wavy lines…I will have to keep that in mind for a quilt that I'm working on right now. Your quilt is so gorgeous…great job!

  13. Megan
    Megan says:

    This is great! I think I am going to have to revisit the wavy quilting in the near future. You make it look so fabulous 🙂

    Thanks for linking to {Sew} Modern Monday! Have a wonderful week!

  14. Lee Heinrich
    Lee Heinrich says:

    Danielle, yes, I should have linked that up! (I added the link to my post, above.) It's so simple, just use the wavy line decorative stitch on your machine. Set it on the widest width and a longer stitch length (I did 7.0 width and 2.0 stitch length, but you might want to test out your settings first to find one you like). Then just move the quilt straight and the machine does the wavy part! It's great!

    Also, Danielle, FYI, you're a "no reply" blogger, otherwise I would have emailed you this info. Check your settings to fix that.

  15. Debbie
    Debbie says:

    I tried that wavy quilting stitch the other day "just because" & loved how fast it was & how great it looked! I wasn't sure it was an 'approved' quilting stitch, it you know what I mean. 😉
    Now I see it on your blog, and that it's "OK!" Yay. My LEAST favorite part of quilting is BASTING. My fav is the binding. I am new to FMQ & have far to go, but am practicing & even taking a class, so I am hopeful!!

  16. Janina
    Janina says:

    I love the design you did on this quilt. I just finished a quilt with a very similar pattern and was wondering how I could quilt it because im getting a little tired of the simple meander and this totally inspired me. Thanks! 🙂


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