The Free Motion Quilting Project: Happy Anniversary!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Happy Anniversary!

It's August 14th and exactly 1 year ago I started this project to create new free motion designs!

free motion quilting | Leah DayI honestly can't believe how fast this year has flown by. It must be true that time flies when you're having fun!

So lets recap on all that has happened in the last 365 days!

First you can read this post about why I started this project a year ago.

My goal was to create the site on free motion quilting that I had been searching for. A place where designs, photos, and videos were shared freely so we could all benefit from new free motion quilting inspiration.

When I launched the project I really had no idea it was going to take off like it has. Within 14 days, quilters from all over the world were commenting on the designs and emailing me with suggestions for the project and site!

Of course, back when I launched the project, I had no idea what would show up the best on video or photos! You can see from the very first design: Shadow Waves, that the project has definitely come a long way in just 1 year.

It's not just the designs that have changed. Many of you may not know this, but when I launched the blog, I only offered 2 quilt patterns in my quilt shop.

It has grown astronomically over the last 12 months due to quilters emailed suggestions (and demands!) for tools, supplies, DVDs, and workbooks devoted to free motion quilting.

Of course, working on DVDs and books on top of blogging, designing, and running and online store isn't easy.

My original goal for the project was to finish it in 365 days, but by November last year, I realized that it wasn't possible to keep the project running at such a fast pace.

It was also obvious that most quilters couldn't keep up with me either! Many of you wrote in encouraging me to take time off, relax, and enjoy the ride.

Does this mean the project was a failure?

Was reaching only Day 209 a total bust?

I don't think so. While the goal was not reached in 1 calendar year, that doesn't mean we can't continue working towards the goal of 365 designs!

So for the record, this project will absolutely continue until we reach Day 365, and who knows? If I keep dreaming up new designs, it may even continue after that!

When I haven't posted new designs, I've really enjoyed having the chance to share myself, my life, and my quilts with all of you.

From creating Winter Wonderland over a crazy Christmas season (during a remodel no less!) to stumbling over My Cup Runneth Over, and finally quilting out some of my "stuff" into Shadow Self, you have all been here cheering me on.

I love that this project has given me the opportunity to share with all of you, to meet so many wonderful people online, and to form a business that is very soon going to support my family entirely.

A year ago, I would never have dreamed that my fledgling site and online quilt shop at would ever be able to support us. Now I'm looking forward to January when my husband Josh will lose his job and being working with me full time!

It's amazing the number of changes that can happen in one year. I can't wait to see where we're at and the quilts I'll create in 2011!

Now to celebrate the anniversary of this project, Josh and I are planning many fun activities for the whole month of August.

I've decided to really clean house and almost every item in the store will be on sale. Some tools and supplies will be closed out for good to make room for new items to take their place.

I'll also be launching a new video series called "How Do I Quilt This?!" that will run in multiple parts throughout the month.

In this video series, I'm going to show you how to quilt 4 actual quilts in a variety of different ways. We're going to learn how to use filler designs in something other than a 4" block!

free motion quilting | Leah DayThe first video on putting the quilts together will be launched on Monday, so make sure to stop by to check it out.

And finally, I just want to say a HUGE THANK YOU!

Thank you for being here.

Thank you for reading.

Thank you for passing word along to your friends.

And Thank you for letting me know you appreciate what I'm doing!

It's only going to get bigger and better every day, so here's to another terrific year!

Let's go quilt,

Leah Day


  1. You crack me up. Thank us? No, thank you! Thank you for sharing your ideas, inspiration, stories and life with us. You inspire me every day with your creativity. Congratulations on making it a full year and here's to many more!

  2. Happy Anniversary and Congratulations! I love your site and look forward to learning more.

  3. Happy Anniversary to you I have onlt been followering for about 5 months this is when I found you. I have enjyed you site and I am glad that your going forward and we can still learn from you. Thanks for the past year and to many more years to come.

  4. Happy Anniversary Leah! Thanks for sharing so much with us.

  5. Congratulations on your first anniversary of this blog. I believe you have done a most excellent job sharing your free motion quilting talent with others. Your blog posts are informative, creative and very interesting. Keep up the fantastic work.

  6. Congratulations Leah! What an accomplishment. Obviously, we all love what you do, so keep on going! Thanks for supporting those of us who are just starting out with FM too.

  7. You have been an inspiration to me!
    I don't know that I would have attempted free motion quilting without you. Thank you so much.

  8. Happy Anniversary, Leah and wishes for wonderful things to come! Your enthusiasm and creativity are much appreciated. You have done wonderful things with your project and helped countless quilters over the hurdle of free motion machine quilting. Thank you and I look forward to seeing what fabulous things you will produce in the future. Keep on quilting!

  9. What a wonderful success story!!!! I can't wait to see where this next year will take us.

  10. Leah, please be assured that everything you post is appreciated very, very much. You have helped so many quilters and I am only one. Thanks for the time you have spent and thanks for sharing your love of quilting with everyone. That's what quilters do!!

  11. Happy Anniversary and Congratulations!!! You have done an outstanding job and I'm looking forward to more inspiring quilting in the future! Also thank your family for sharing you with us!

  12. Congrats. The project is a success. I have enjoyed reading your blog for the last 12 months and am learning soooo much. Thanks

  13. Thanks for your great site Leah. After a workshop we held Saturday on FME, I have just emailed your blog address to all my textile art group email list so that's another 29 readers.

  14. Well done on how you have done so much so far. I don't always comment but I have been a regular reader since I started blogging end June this year. I do look at your site when I am thinking about quilting something for ideas. Thanks for the inspiration and a fun site too! Hugz

  15. Congratulations Leah!!! I read your blog daily. It has been a pleasure to "get to know you." I appreciate all that you share about quilting, and I also appreciate all that you share about yourself. I wish you another successful - even more successful - year!!

  16. Happy Anniversary! I really enjoy reading your blog and taking inspiration to doodle more fillers myself.

  17. Happy Anniversary. And thanks for all the insights you have shared, and all the inspiration you have given.


  18. Congratulations on your anniversary, To me it has change my perspective on free motion quilting. Before I just could dream about those amazing designs, you have truly inspired me to try. I had the tools to do it I just needed you. I recently made a wall hanging using some of your designs I cannot tell you the reactions no only from my husband but all those who have seen it. Thank you and I wish you even more success in years to come.

  19. Hi Leah

    A failure at only reaching Day 209? No, definitely not! I would say you have achieved a huge success with your passion, diligence and expertise. I have been with since almost (but not quite) the beginning and I congratulate you on all you have achieved. All the best for your full time work partnership with your husband.

  20. You are so right - it's amazing how we let ourselves drift on and forget the things we've tried and accomplished - just last week I was fortunate enough to go over to N Ireland and spend a week with my parents - they have a 4 block quilt I made them to celebrate their 45th wedding anniversary and though the quilt isn't densely quilted I did do some lovely quilting complimenting the blocks used for each of their 4 children - happy anniversary and I'm looking forward to following the new 'how shall I quilt' posts

  21. Thank you for all the time you give to your blog for teaching an inspiring us.
    freemotionquilting is the most inspiring, interesting an joyful blog I ever read, and I love it every day!
    May your ideas never end.
    Many greetings from germany

  22. Congratulations, I have learned so much reading your blog, thanks for sharing!

  23. Happy anniversary! You are pretty amazing!

  24. I am honoured to have 'known' you through it all, and even more honoured that one of my first stabs at free motion is featured as the 'before' in one of the galleries. LOL!! You have been a huge inspiration to me, Leah, and I'm so glad to have connected with you. Congratulations on the boombing business and the anniversary.

  25. Thank you so much for sharing your quilting with us. I recently discover your site and am learning so much. When I saw you were going to be demoing at the Asheville quilt show, I had to be there and was sitting on the front row. Happy Anniversary!

  26. Congrats on your first year! You have been a huge source of inspiration for me, and right now I've got a charm pack quilt on my Janome being quilting with swirling petals.

    I'm looking forward to the video series.

  27. Happy Anniversary! Thank you for sharing your skills and your thoughts with us.

  28. I've had a wonderful time following your blogging adventures. You continue to be a useful resource for new ideas. I can't wait to see what you do with applying your techniques to actual quilts, right in front of us. That will be fun.

    Congratulations on your first year!

  29. Congrats Leah on your 1 year anniversary. I'm so happy for you. I have thoroughly enjoyed following you this past year, and look forward to continuing to do so.

    I think your new video series will be fantastic. I often struggle with "how do I quilt this" and am really open to ideas and suggestions.

    Keep up the good work!!


  30. Leah,
    your blog advice sales have all been wonderful
    You will go far
    thanks Judi

  31. Happy Anniversary! What? Has it really been a year? Thank you for helping the time fly by and making free motion quilting so nonthreatening!!!
    Ps. My word verification for my comment is "wirrugh". Definition? The sound my machine makes when I have a birds nest building out of bobbin thread on the underside of my quilt. :)

  32. Congratulations! I am so proud of all you accomplished to date, and will in the years to come. You are a daily inspiration. Thank you for this wonderful journey into free motion quilting. I can't wait to see where you take us next!

  33. Congratulations! Wow that year's gone quickly. I think stopping the every day designs in November isn't a failure at all, as it's allowed you to branch out and post other fantastic information on your blog on the 'off' days, adding even more value to it.

  34. THANK YOU!!! Leah, you are an inspiration to us all. You have the guts, and you can have the glory! Congratulations on one year of...wonderful, amazing, learning...
    Looking forward to another 365 days...

  35. I started following your blog on day 18 and thought I could keep up with you and your designs. I was so glad when you started blogging other things. Then I thought I could keep up with your designs. I'm still way behind, but am so glad to search through them and find just the right one for a project.

    Dorothy in Nebraska


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