Free Motion Baby Quilt
After making that GIANT Dresden Circle Quilt, I decided I’d better quilt it while I still had the frame and hadn’t lost the quilt top in the move. First I needed a plan for the large amount of negative space.
The quilt was just a practice “what if” kinda quilt, but then it turned into being a pretty neat design for a little nephew, due this fall. He doesn’t have a first name yet, so I went ahead and quilted in his last name. It is Weaver, as you can see, and unlike a niece quilt with a last name- this quilt WEAVER will always be his last name. Well, unless he gets super famous as a hip-hop mogul and changes his name entirely to just be one word, like RACE or something like that. hahahahah. (Hum, now that I think of it… I hope my SIL doesn’t see this post. It will kinda ruin the surprise. I’m willing to risk it for ya, though.)
First up, in my “what if I tried this” quilt is trapunto lettering. I have wanted to try this ever since I saw Angela Walters Quilting on THE Parisville quilt at the Houston Quilt Market a couple years ago. I found a fat-chubby font on the computer (Ravie) and printed off large letters. I used the water soluble thread and proceeded to stitch in two layers of 80/20 batting. Then I cut away the excess batting.
Next I needed to try to get my quilting idea to fit in my small sewing machine throat, on the Hinterberg frame. In the sketch above (1st pic) I have a bit more elaborate design. But I opted to go with just swirls, lines and pebbles to fill. So far so good.
The letters follow the arc of the circle’s edge, so I needed to figure out a way for the swirl/line fill to crash right on into the puffy letters. I ended up putting pebbles around all the letters so they’d stand out a bit more.
Lots of rolling the quilt on the stretcher bars to get to all the places around the letters.
As it turns out (AGAIN) I narrowly made the quilt with enough grey thread. Son of a Biscuit!!! Wait what?? Thankfully, I had decided in the middle that the Dresden shape would be quilted in Orange thread. Looks like I’m just not too good at estimating how much thread will be needed on a quilt top.
The above pic shows how the linear fill bumps into the trapunto letters. Next time I might use a few ruler markings as a guide, instead of winging the whole thing.
You can enlarge the pictures to see the quilting a bit better. Unfortunately (and OH LORD- FORTUNATELY) you cannot see the quilting in the circle too well. It is some very rough-looking McTavishing. I have quilt back pictures for you, where you can see that design much closer.
That is what it really looks like, but here it is with an artsy filter on the image to really show you the back.
Next up I need to bind this little quilt and get it in the washer. A commenter on Flickr mentioned that once that quilt has that washed “shrinkle” you won’t even notice any puckers or missteps in the quilting. (With 80/20 batting) My next thought, obviously, is “How many times am I going to need to wash this baby?!!”? HAHAHAHA. As it turns out, even though I quilted all the background/negative space grey first, I should have also stitched in a ditch or two to stabilize the circle shape. Live and learn people. =)