Last month I showed you this mandala that I was marking to get it ready for quilting. As I was marking it I decided that I wanted to use some threads that I hadn't used on the longarm before and I felt like I needed to test them. I had a little fat quarter mandala that's been hanging around my sewing room for a while and decided that it could be my practice piece. It was in the same colors so I could test the threads.
Boy am I goad I did this! You can take all the classes in the world, like my awesome ruler class next weekend, but nothing beats loading a quilt and practicing. Over the past year I've pulled this out several times and started marking all over it in Crayola Washable Marker. I think I had 5 or 6 different ideas marked on it. It was kind of a mess but I left it and just started quilting and tried to ignore the marker.
I marked the petal shapes in one design, quilted in another and hated both. Then I ripped out the stitches.
Then I got smart and traced the shape on paper to work out a design that I liked.
To quilt the ring of red around the center I marked guidelines for every other stitched line.
But that wasn't enough so I went back and added even more lines. They aren't perfect but from viewing distance they look just fine.
This is after quilting and before washing. There's so much marker on it that when I soaked it the water turned dark purple....and it wasn't from the fabric bleeding!
This photo shows off the quilting best and helps show some of the things I learned:
- the acrylic thread runs beautifully on the Innova so I can use it on the next quilt confidently
- but my color choices need some reconsideration. Those Spirograph shapes are really cool and you can't see them! I should have quilted those areas in dark grey or black.
- I love the effect of the white stitched ring behind the petals. The back stitching shows but not as bad as I expected.
But, you know what I really, really love?
The back!! I hand stitched the binding just so I could display it from the front or back.
There's one more lesson back here too.
When I did this I used the same thread top and bottom throughout to see how it behaves. I think that I should not use the acrylic thread in the bobbin. I'll use one of my "normal" threads.
I also learned that I wan't the quilt to show well on the back so I'll use a solid for the back of the next quilt and I can't wait to get it loaded and started.
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I'm Vicki Welsh and I've been making things as long as I can remember. I used to be a garment maker but transitioned to quilts about 20 years ago. Currently I'm into fabric dyeing, quilting, Zentangle, fabric postcards, fused glass and mosaic. I document my adventures here.