Welcome to the new Quilt in a Day community pages. Please use your old username and password to log in. If you forgot your password, you can reset it from the log in page. If you have questions about how the new board works, try the FAQ link above.

learning free motion

Stuck on a block, confused about directions, or have an incredible tip? Try this forum if you're looking for help or guides to improve your quilting techniques.
Post Reply
Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Oct 07, 2012 2:14 pm

learning free motion

Post by Carol7 » Sun Oct 07, 2012 2:42 pm

I am having trouble with getting started. My fabric seems to gather when I start out.

Posts: 13111
Joined: Mon Dec 29, 2008 6:42 pm

Re: learning free motion

Post by auntjana » Sun Oct 07, 2012 6:32 pm

Make sure that you use lots of safety pins - put them all over and about 4 inches or so apart - also make sure that your feed dogs - they feed the fabric through the needle are in the down [position - if you don't put them down, they impede the fabric moving smoothly as you free motion quilt.

Don't give up - just get a practice piece and practice, practice and more practice - you will have many new pot holders! LOL

Go slow at first and the more you do, the better and faster you will get


Posts: 1680
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2012 6:56 am

Re: learning free motion

Post by MainelyMe » Mon Oct 08, 2012 3:18 am

One thing I learned is if your machine has speed control, put it at half speed at first. Then it won't run away from you. Also, start the needle going then move the fabric. I hope these make sense to you. It does take a while to catch on, so just keep trying. Good luck!

Posts: 534
Joined: Sat Feb 24, 2007 1:07 pm

Re: learning free motion

Post by northbound » Thu Oct 11, 2012 4:22 pm

Are you bringing up the bobbin thread to the top with the first stitch and hanging on to it along with the top thread before you start the second stitch? You might get puckering at the start if you don't. Have you seen El's video on free motion quilting? It's in the media theater, the From Scraps to Quilts section, and shows how to do that.

Posts: 147
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2010 1:11 pm

Re: learning free motion

Post by nanaquilter1954 » Fri Nov 30, 2012 5:40 pm

I love free-style quilting!! After you get the technique, it becomes addicting because it is so relaxing. Keep practicing and change needles often.

Posts: 53
Joined: Mon Sep 24, 2012 4:14 pm

Re: learning free motion

Post by fanquilt » Wed Mar 27, 2013 1:04 pm

Yesssss El's free motion sewing tutorials 1 and 2 are great. I did them last week. Now I know what I've been doing wrong in machine sewing as well, tutorials 1 and 2.


Posts: 6550
Joined: Sat Dec 12, 2009 12:32 pm

Re: learning free motion

Post by scrapquilter48 » Sat Feb 01, 2014 10:22 am

Thanks for all your shared ideas, I'm at the darning foot stage ready to make 1st time, some quilting on my tabletopper.

Posts: 6550
Joined: Sat Dec 12, 2009 12:32 pm

Re: learning free motion

Post by scrapquilter48 » Thu Feb 13, 2014 9:42 am

Yes, bobbin thread bring to top before anything, I tried the wrong way, 1st and thread bunched on the back, then did the right way, Heah! I'm Canadian! it worked beautifully.

Then found a few tutorials from authors familiar with, Eleanor had one, and hands on have to get back to my dungeon in a week or so, moved my machine upstairs in window, winter long here.

Posts: 2953
Joined: Mon Mar 04, 2013 1:22 pm

Re: learning free motion

Post by FlorenceM » Sat Feb 22, 2014 1:05 pm

After MANY years of hand quilting I am making the transition to machine quilting. i am learning a lot just reading this thread. I will try your tips and let you know.

Post Reply

Return to “Quilting Technique Discussions”