The Free Motion Quilting Project: FMQ Friday - Quilting, Sewing, and New Audiobooks, Oh My!

Friday, May 10, 2013

FMQ Friday - Quilting, Sewing, and New Audiobooks, Oh My!

It's been 10 days since I set the goal to work on Duchess Reigns just a bit every day and already I'm seeing huge results:

free motion quilting | Leah Day

Through April I had been filled with a negative attitude that it would take WEEKS to finish that feather wing and WEEKS to fill the background and more WEEKS to finish the background.

In reality, it's just taken 10 days to bust through this rut. The center medallion is almost done! Yay!

Mostly this got bogged down because it's quilted so darn dense and it's so extremely excruciatingly BORING to quilt the same identical thing on both sides. I realize now that, while I love symmetry, I hate quilting the same thing over and over again.

So I'm keeping my brain entertained by digging into a new stash of audio books and found a truly terrible tween / witch / paranormal fiction book, Beautiful Creatures, which was just entertaining enough to keep me focused last week. There were times the plot was so ridiculous I had to stop quilting to laugh out loud at just how silly the book was.

I've also been listening to Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can't Stop Talking, a book about introverted people and how we tick. Yep, I'm definitely an extremely introverted person, which might or might not be surprising to you. It's part of the reason you'll see me in videos every week, but probably never in person. I just love being home where it's quiet and peaceful.

When I'm not working on Duchess Reigns, I've been working on a muslin for a button down shirt, following the information from two Craftsy classes:

Susan Khalje in The Couture Dress doesn't make a lot of radical changes to her muslin, but she does layout the process very clearly and really sold me on the importance of making a muslin and how all the pieces should be marked and stitched for most fitting clarity.

Lynda Maynard from Sew the Perfect Fit makes RADICAL changes to make three dresses fit three very different body types. I think I gasped out loud the first time I saw her take a pair of scissors to the muslin and cut it wide open to insert more fabric! What I love about this class is it's making me a lot more fearless about changing a pattern to make it fit better.

free motion quilting | Leah Day
I've been using information from both classes because both teach garment fitting just a little differently. I like seeing the many different ways fitting works and both teacher's opinions because I know from experience that everyone sews just a bit differently and we have to find the methods that works best for us.

The garment I'm modifying is a cute button down shirt pattern I've had for years (Simplicity 6407). Before I had James the shirt fit great at a size 10 and I made many versions of it in different fabrics. After having my baby, however, certain things just never went back to the way they were before (sound familiar?) and the shirts would always gape weirdly at the buttons in the front.

It's just so nice to be fitting this shirt properly now and be able to make something that looks good. Seeing this top again feels like I'm reuniting with an old friend!

So that's all that's bouncing around my sewing room today. What have you been up to this week?

Simple rules for the FMQ Friday link up:

1. Link up with a post that features something about Free Motion Quilting (FMQ).
2. Somewhere in your post, you must link back here, or you can just post the FMQF button in your sidebar.
3. Comment on at least a few of the other FMQF links. Share your love of free motion quilting and make this weekly link up a fun way to connect.

Let's go quilt,



  1. hi leah, love your work btw, thank you for talking about the book Quiet, i'm an introvert, but i can pretend otherwise, my son however is very introverted, i'm going to my library today to get it and read it, so again thankyou,barb

  2. Oh Leah, that center medallion is intensely beautiful, truly stunning. I'm so glad you persevered. Bravo!!


  3. Your audio selections sound great. I've been listening to a free series that you might find interesting. It's from Sounds True and is a series of interviews on self acceptance. I won't put a URL in my comment, but you can just google it if you're interested.

  4. Barb - I think all introverts can "fake it" to a degree because we live in such an extroverted society. I have to say, reading this book is definitely a step to accepting myself exactly as who I am, not who I can sometimes force myself to be. I think you'll enjoy it!


  5. I absolutely adore this quilt. I came across it about 2 months ago .. and I had to go back and scour your blog for the whole quilt journey!

    I'm a newbie quilter who hasn't even gotten a firm grasp on FMQ yet! But this kind of quilt is what I've marked as my BIG goal. One day I WILL make something like this. With the complete dyeing process! It might take me twenty years but I will! lol

    So I just wanted to say thank you for giving a newbie quilter hope that she too can do something this gobsmackingly gorgeous a project! :)

  6. I love FMQing while listening to an audio book, I find it tends to help you not over-think it! Repetitive quilting can be boring but it will be so worth it when its done, its beautiful!


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