Friday, August 30, 2013

FMQ Friday #2 - The Difficulties of Straight Line Quilting

I thought I'd try to keep the quilting on this mini quilt simple since the block is just so busy. Also, it seemed like it would be easier than actual Free Motion Quilting (FMQ).  I wanted to do simple straight lines...but not all the way across. I used my ruler to mark lines 3/4" apart. - Modern Lonestar Quilt, Straight Line Quilting

Here it is ready to quilt. - Modern Lonestar Quilt, Straight Line Quilting

The finished quilting. - Modern Lonestar Quilt, Straight Line Quilting

I had a few false starts. I was having tension difficulties because I was using a finer thread on top and a heavier thread on the couldn't be helped.  The colored threads I had on hand were differing weights and quality. Then, the first line I quilted was a bit wobbly, and I ripped it out. I finally got the first line in the ditch, but when I stitched the second line the back I ripped that one out. To make sure things stayed flat, I started the first few lines in the middle and worked my way out.

The back still puckered some. I was a little bummed about it. In fact, that night I dreamt about. It wasn't a good dream. I dreamt the back was WAY loose and puckered--you could fit a small child in there. I took my fabric scissors to it and cut the whole back off.  After I woke up, I went to look at it and realized it really isn't THAT bad. 

Here is a close up of the middle back. - Modern Lonestar Quilt, Straight Line Quilting

It is a bit hard to see since the fabric is so dark, but you can see how in the middle intersecting lines it isn't exactly flat. 

I thought doing straight line quilting with my walking foot would be easier than Free Motion Quilting, but I seemed to make more mistakes, it seemed to take more time, and the backing moved around a whole lot more. The presser foot kept pushing things around in my quilting sandwich compounding all the above. I felt like I had basted it and pin basted it well, but it didn't seem to help. 

Do you like quilting with your walking foot better than FMQ or vice versa? 
What tips have you discovered that have made quilting with either method that have helped you the most?
How do you keep your back nice and smooth?

And be sure to check out the Leah at the FMQ project. 
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