The November Free Motion Quilt Challenge at SewCalGal is a tutorial from the very talented designer and teacher, Sarah Vedeler.
Sarah had us practicing spirals this month. She made it easy by establishing a grid on paper. The boundaries really helped me to establish a rhythm in drawing the spirals.
For my practice piece, I used hand-dyed fabric scraps, an almost empty spool of Coats & Clark for the top thread, and an assortment of almost empty bobbins with Aurifil 50 weight threads. I loosened my top tension a bit. And, yes, I use practice pieces to use up odd bits and pieces unless I have an end result in mind and I really need to know how the materials are going to play together.
I drew a grid on the fabric with a blue washout marker.
For some practical application, I grabbed another piece of hand-dyed fabric (I wish I had the foresight to see that it would be a lousy choice for photography, as you will soon see.)
On this piece, I free-motion stitched a tree with 30 weight variegated cotton thread. I should have chosen a different color; then maybe the stitching would have shown better.
I’m calling it “The Ghost Tree” since you can’t see it. Sigh.
It will help if you click on the photos for a closer look.
The background is filled with free-motion swirls made from 100 weight polyester. No grid. Funny…after stitching all of those swirls on a grid, I had a hard time deliberately stitching swirls that are not evenly sized and spaced. I didn’t want the swirls the same in my background.
The tree is not flat, but that’s hard to photograph too.
A look at the back: