The Free Motion Quilting Project: Day 59 - Hardwood Floors

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Day 59 - Hardwood Floors

Let's get our Do-It-Yourself hats on, roll up our sleeves, and start laying hardwood floors.

Wait a minute, this is a quilting blog right? Scratch that - let's quilt those floors instead!

free motion quilting | Leah Day
My kitchen remodel has been on hold for the past couple months due to various mishaps and forces of nature beyond my control.

free motion quilting | Leah DayEventually I know that I will hate any mention of remodeling because I'll be so sick of sheet rock, tile, and counter tops, I'll be ready to scream.

But right now with my kitchen looking uglier by the day, it's all I can do not to pick up a sledge hammer and get started myself!

This blog is really keeping me nice and patient because without this distraction, I probably would have already started sledging away.

No, I'm not kidding, either! Here's a photo of a remodel my husband and I started in our basement when I was 6 months pregnant with James.

Okay, back to laying hardwood floors on a quilt:

Inspiration - When my husband and I purchased our house in 2006, we knew it was a "fixer-upper" but we had no idea we'd have to replace the roof, pipes, septic tank lines, oven, stove top, refrigerator, washer, and the floor of two showers!

free motion quiltingOn top of it all, the kitchen in this house has never been my favorite. I plan to move the fridge to the other side, open up a second door, tear down all the cabinets on the upper right, and open that space up with a bar to see into the open dining room and living room.

Once the kitchen is done, we will rip out the wall to wall red velvet cake colored carpet and replace it with laminate wood floors, that yes, I will lay myself!

My dad once said that I should marry a carpenter so we could do projects together. Instead I married a writer so I can wield the hammers and drills and no one will argue with my "vision"!

Design Family - Edge to Edge. This design, just like real hardwood floors, runs from one edge of your space to the other so this will work great to cover open, uncomplicated areas of your quilt.

Difficulty Level - Beginner. This is a great design to practice stitching straight lines and traveling a small amount. Keep your hands parallel with your needle to help stitch straight from one edge to the other.

Directional Texture - Two directions. There's definitely a horizontal / vertical look to this design, no doubt about it!

Suggestions for Use - Looking at the quilts in the quilt show this weekend, brown fabrics were super popular this year. I really think this design would look great stitched on brown fabrics in the sashing between blocks. It's simple, easy to stitch, and does a bit more than just drawn straight lines can do.

Back of Hardwood Floorsfree motion quilting | Leah Day
Feel free to use this free motion filler designs in your quilts,
and make sure to tell your friends where you learned it.

Click here to support the project by visiting our online quilt shop.

Let's go Quilt!

Leah Day


  1. Ms. Day, have loved ALL the days of this blog so what has produced a comment on day 59? Kitchen remodel. I would think long and hard and again long to opening up "a second door". Doors take space, space that is a preminum in a kitchen, whether it counter space, storage space, work space - you get the picture. Think about if you will use this door beyond the first novility of it. AND if you do, do you need the "other" door that you are using now instead. "Pass throughs" were very in when I was a kid and many remodels and new houses had these pass throughs. Did they get used: Yes, for about two years and then the counter space in front of the pass through was used for other things more pressing than to pass through this or that. This is just one example. Doors take a lot of space in a room where there is never enough space.

  2. Hi Marianna,

    I hear you! Space is usually at a premium in kitchens, so allow me to explain:

    The door I'm opening will be a pass through doorway, so no actual door in the space.

    To make up for the lost 24" of door space, I'm extending the cabinets and countertops down by more than 48" (so double the space) AND turning a corner to create an "L" shaped bar.

    On top of all of this, I'm also building a pantry cabinet to hold all of our dry and packaged foods (rice, pasta, canned stuff) next to the fridge (where the table is now).

    A big load of planning has gone into this remodel, and don't worry, I've double and triple checked that we will have MORE than enough space when it's all said and done.

    Let's go quilt (or daydream about new cabinets)!

    Leah Day

  3. I have a question, are these meant to be block sized or can they be worked up to fit a whole quilt?

  4. Leah, to me this looks more like Bamboo. Not sure if you've ever seen it growing, but this looks like a bunch of Bamboo all squished together. Plus, for novices, the small "horizontal" lines don't have to be perfectly straight, but slightly curved instead. =-)
    I like it!

  5. Kim - Yes, these designs can be used to fill the surface of a whole quilt if you quilted them with 1 - 2 inches of space between the stitching lines.

    They are all DESIGNED to be used small with 1/8 inch or so between the stitching lines, but most quilters don't want or need stitching this dense.

    The real object is just to get as many new, fresh designs out as possible!

    Wendy - You've designed your first variation! I'll definitely have to stitch a "Bamboo Forest" now!

    Let's go quilt!

    Leah Day

  6. Oh kitchen remodels, bleck I hate those. I did mine, everything was done and I loved it. Then the hurricanes came very shortly after we completed the job. Boohoo. I was not in a good place to have much of any say in the second kitchen remodel as some of the items lost in the kitchen damages simply could not be replaced.

    I hauled around the cabinet door I wanted to replicate for two months until my husband trying to advoid an accident was hit in the back of the head with that cabinet door. After that we focused on getting it done. While not perfect after 4 years it's fine the way it is. I wouldn't change it without a magic wand to keep the construction dust and mess away.

  7. I just found your blog and I am so glad I did! I have been wanting to try free motion quilting for awhile now. Your post made me laugh, we gutted our kitchen (and added on a garage and mudroom) while I was pregnant and while it wasn't enjoyable, I am glad we went ahead and tackled it. Only difference, our carpet was navy blue :)

  8. I'm reviewing your beginner designs because tomorrow I start quilting my son's Thomas the Tank quilt and needed some design ideas. Now I see how I can free motion railroad tracks!
    thanks Leah!
    Happy Holidays, Wendy @ That Seams Fun


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