The Free Motion Quilting Project: Day 323 - Wavy Hair

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Day 323 - Wavy Hair

Anyone else having a bad hair day? Well at least you can now stitch hair on your quilts that's sleek, slightly wavy, and only as crazy as you want it to be!

Most of my goddess quilts feature long flowing locks of hair, but I’ve always struggled to quilt these areas with a design that does them justice. Now we have the perfect design - Wavy Hair!

free motion quilting | Leah DayYeah, yeah, this is a cheap variation of Blowing Wind, but what’s a girl to do?! It’s nearly my birthday and even though this isn’t a huge variation, I think this looks different enough to count as a new design.

Difficulty Level - Intermediate. This design starts with a simple wavy line and tear drop shape, then you stitch inside the tear drop and fill it with bouncy, arching echoes.

This is different from Blowing Wind because that design filled the tear drop with internal echoes (I warned you it was only a slight variation!). Once you fill the tear drop, travel back out and swirl around the shape multiple times to build up the texture and cover lots of space.

Design Family - Branching. This family of designs are all based on McTavishing, one of the very first designs I learned to quilt thanks to Karen McTavish’s book Mastering the Art of McTavishing.

Directional Texture - All Directions. We don’t call it Wavy Hair for nothing! This design has a beautiful, multi-directional texture that would look great stitched on any blue quilt (blue quilts always make me think of water), or the water or sky sections of a landscape quilt.

Suggestions for Use - Would you like to make your own quilt goddess? These quilts are amazingly powerful to create and allow you to play with so many textures and designs over the surface. I've been thinking about offering my original patterns on the site so you can make your own version of my two quilts, My Cup Runneth Over and Balance. Whatcha think?

Back of Wavy Hair
free motion quilting | Leah DayFeel free to use this free motion filler design 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. Someone's dyslexic (hee hee)... it's day 323, not 232.

  2. Oops! I've been doing that a lot lately! Thanks for the heads up!

  3. In your post, you asked if readers would want your original designs to be available.

    I'm iffy on this one. I think those quilts are so personal (although maybe those ones less so than other goddesses you've made) that it would be weird for someone else to make them.

    I know I've wanted to get into art quilting, and have no idea where to start- I just don't have an artists mind, and I've thought "what about a goddess that represents you, like the ones Leah shares" but I nix this idea, since that would be copying YOUR thing, not being MY thing. I feel in the same way- it would be really weird to make the same one you've already made, but maybe less weird now that we have "permission". So in that sense, could you sell instructions on creating a personal goddess quilt? Maybe like a template of how to create the body, how to create a circular design around it, and how to create rays (elements that seem to be common to many of the quilts). Then we all have permission to start art quilting by "copying" you, but in a way that doesn't feel like we are taking something so personal.

    Just some thoughts...

  4. I'm so glad I found your blog. I've been practicing my free motion quilting on scraps, and I think I'm ready to do it on a quilt now.

  5. Just got the latest issue of American Quilter magazine and there you are along with your Winter Wonderland quilt that was awarded Best Home Machine Workmanship award at the Knoxville show. Congratulations!!! And many thanks for sharing those prize winning quilting patterns with us.

  6. Honestly. . I don't think this looks like a cheap variation of blowing wind. I really do think it looks MUCH more like hair!


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