For May’s Brave Quilter challenge, I decided to focus on quilting. I quilt my own quilts when they are a reasonable size, so improving my quilting is something with instant benefits. Besides the actual act of quilting, another thing that is always hard for me is deciding how to quilt a quilt. So for the challenge, I decided to make a quilting sampler of some of my favorite patterns. This would allow me to practice my quilting skills??? while also creating a tool that will help me select quilting patterns in the future.
First, I cut two pieces of muslin the size of a scrap of quilt batting. Then I stitched some sections into it like this.
Next, I looked though some of my quilting books for patterns I liked. I started with The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting, a book I had the pleasure to review recently.
I quilted this swirls and pearls from page 103. Honestly, I've done a much better job with this pattern before on my quilt Rainbow Connection, but oh well.
Then I tried swirls from page 114. I love this pattern but could not quite get it. The swirls are supposed to have long tails but not all of mine do. Sigh. I'll probably quilt another sample of it. Hey, maybe practice will make perfect!
Next, I decided to quilt some narrow border designs because I often have quilts with borders. I quilted some straight lines first to divide the section into “borders”. Then I quilted ribbon candy, square chains, zig-zags, and spiral chains from pages 27-31 in the book. The spiral chains I did not really get at all. Since I like the idea, I'll try doing them again too.
I also searched Pinterest and tried to copy some of the designs I saw there. First I tried various triangle fills. I used the squarish one on my Rainbow Connection quilt, and thought it looked pretty good.
Then I tried a loopy fill. I've always liked the look of this one.
Obviously, I need more quilt practice. In my own defense I'll only say that when I take my time I do much better but I really just wanted to collect quilting designs so I didn't really concentrate as much as I would have on a real quilt.. But even with the mistakes in the quilting, this sampler will definitely serve its purpose—as a collection of favorite quilting ideas. Making this sampler was on my Quarter 2 Finish Along list, so I can mark off another one!
Thanks Brave Quilter for making me brave enough to finally make a quilt sampler and to post photos of the less than ideal result. If you haven't tried Brave Quilter yet, I urge you to try. It will push you to try new things, and to pick a goal and achieve it. There's another Brave Quilter linkup opening June 4th, so be sure to scoot over to Pink Doxies and give it a try. You won't regret it, no matter what the result. Gare-un-teed. <grin>
I share my blog posts with these awesome linky parties, including Brave Quilter!