The Free Motion Quilting Project: Happy New Year!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year!

It's officially 2013! Was it just me or did 2012 last FOREVER?! This past week I've felt like a kid on a long trip whining "Are we there yet?!"

We're now finally THERE and it's time to start a new project!  Here's the introduction / explanation of all that's going on this year:

So yes, probably the first thing you noticed is I've cut my hair! I was feeling the need for something new and whacked off my ponytail last week. It's a relief to not have so much hair to deal with anymore!

Now for the really important details and changes to the project coming this year:

This year we will be working on this quilt, Express Your Love:

free motion quilting | Leah Day

You can find the Printed Fabric Panel (a.k.a cheater cloth) right here at 

I've printed my panels on the Cotton Poplin, which I feel has the nicest color quality, but the Kona cotton or Combed cotton can also work just fine. You will need 1 yard of fabric for 1 goddess quilt.

I'm also sharing the PDF printable pattern for free right here.

Download the pattern, print it out full size (12 sheets of paper), tape it together and you will have a complete, full sized pattern!

As for the construction - you can put this quilt top together ANY WAY YOU WANT. Tomorrow I will start with a video using a black wholecloth quilt (1 yard black fabric marked with the design, basted with 1 yard batting and backing fabric).

free motion quilting | Leah Day

I'm really leaving the construction method totally up to you to start with. However you want to construct your top, mark it, or just go with the Spoonflower Panel is just fine.  Through the year, I will piece, applique, and fuse more quilt tops and teach those techniques along the way.

So understand from the first that this IS NOT going to be a step-by-step carefully detailed tutorial on how to make EXACTLY one top identical to mine. This is going to be a free-for-all of new techniques, tons of new designs, and by the end of it I might have 3 or 5 or 15 or more finished Express Your Love quilts. I honestly have no idea how many I will make!

Now as for the structure of the week and what you can look forward to, here's the schedule:

Sunday - UFO post and link up - post your progress on any UFO you're working on.

Monday - FMQP Post - New designs, new techniques, etc on Express Your Love

Tuesday - FMQP Post - New designs, new techniques, etc on Express Your Love

Wednesday - WIP Wednesday - Simple blog post on what is on the machine right that second and linking up over at Freshly Pieced.

Thursday - FMQP Post - New designs, new techniques, etc on Express Your Love

Friday - Free Motion Quilting Friday (FMQF) - Link up with ANYTHING you have free motion quilted, not just what we're working on during the week. Everyone and anything is welcome, so longarmers please stop lurking and start linking up!

Saturday - Random something, recipes, or a day off, just depends on how I'm feeling that day. Maybe a few more James Day Puppet Shows

So there's going to be a lot more posts, more designs, more videos, more everything this year! I'm super excited to be sharing all this with you and hope you will quilt along, share your free motion quilting progress, and challenge yourself this year right along with me!

Let's go quilt,

Leah Day


  1. Love the haircut! It looks great on you :) Happy New Year!

  2. Happy New Year! I am glad to hear your goal of spending more quality time with your family. Thank you for sharing your passion with us!

  3. Sorry to comment twice, but when I go to print the .pdf it only gives me the option to print one page, if I don't scale just a very small portion of the design, if I do scale it shrinks the design. I tried lots of options but couldn't get it to work. Do you know if I am doing something wrong on my end, or if the problem lies on your end?

    (Also, I love the haircut.)

  4. Hi Jessim - The pattern is full size (41 x 30 inches) so the issue is getting your printer to recognize that you wish to tile the pages.

    So check the printer page and see if there is a place to select "poster" or "tile pages" and make sure you have at least a 0.25 overlap so everything will go together nicely. Let me know if that works okay!



  5. The poster option worked for me, I now got 12 pages from my printer but still have to stick them together to see what size I ended up with. But a bit bigger or smaller seems okay to me!
    Leah, thank you for all the hard work you already have put in this project. I feel blessed with just the pattern alone and can't believe all you have planned for the rest of the year!
    Love your hair! ♥ Might follow that example too...

  6. Thanks Leah. I found out that the problem was that Adobe Reader 9 (and earlier) doesn't offer tiling. I was using reader 9. I am now trying to see if I can download an update.

  7. Looking forward to the new format! Also your hair looks really cute :)

  8. Happy New Year Leah. I'm so happy to hear of your new project and will definitely be following along whether I make a Godess or not. I really like your new hairstyle and the new video style! Keep it up!

  9. You look beautiful!!!! Looking forward to taking your class at Sew Much Fun in March

  10. Happy new Year! Thank you so much for sharing and most important taking time with your family :)

  11. Happy New Year to you. I love your new haircut and I love your are so generous in sharing your honesty, talents, thoughts and feelings. I have learned alot from you in 2012 and look forward to this year.
    God bless.

  12. Leah, what method do you use to mark a pattern on black fabric?

  13. Yeah, I got the pattern. Had to go use my husbands printer. I guess mine is way old. LOL

  14. Leah, what method of marking did you use on the black fabric?

  15. Leah, I have been following you (silently) for a long time now, and I think you are supercalafragilisticexpilaladocious, (does that show my age?). Maybe I will get to the point where I show my progress, but for now I want you to know that you have been amazing and inspiring to my creativity. You are gifted and fortunate that you found a passion so early in life. You go girl.!!! Craftsy is also great for you ... hope you also get $$ for sales on spoonflower.

  16. I just ordered the panel and printed out the PDF in multi-page format. What an inspiring project to work on! If I end up with more than one, I already know who will receive them.

    I'm new joining in this year. I've been doing my own FMQ for several years, but need lots of practice be able to transfer what I visualize in my head to my quilts.

    Your haircut is very cute! My granddaughter got her hair cut today as well. Nice to have a fresh look for a new year.

    Happy New Year!

  17. I love your new haircut! It looks really great on you!! looking forward to your creativity!

  18. Love the new look! I have learned so much from you last year also love your crafsty class. I am looking forward to this year.
    Happy New Year.
    Cathy from MO

  19. I have been sitting on the back row during your wonderful 2012 classes, but have still learnt so much and been very inspired! Perhaps I should move up a few rows this year and participate a little?!
    Anyway, 2013 sounds amazing! Thank you for sharing and your willingness to also show if some of the processes fail or end up strange :) I really appreciate keeping this wonderful craft real!
    Love your new haircut, I am somewhat bored with my own eternally present ponytail.

  20. Hi Leah I love this but I have an older printer and cannot seem to change to tile any other suggestions for me to print it out? Looking forward to this. Happy New Year

  21. Dear Leah and everybody else, also from me a very happy new year, I'm thrilled and thankful for the amazing oportunities that you offer. I hope to be able to take part in lot's of things... also have a lot of plans for the upcoming year ... let'go face it :-)
    Regards from Patchworktine in Germany...

  22. Wow - I love your new haircut! It's very flattering on you :-)

  23. By the way, thanks for the encouragement for your new linkup on Fridays.

    As I transition from from amateur to professional quilter, it's nice to have a place to share (and especially be inspired by what others are doing)!

  24. Thanks for this project. Looking forward to it. I was able to get it printed and now to put it together and transfer the pattern.


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