The Free Motion Quilting Project: 25. Trapplique - Part 2

Thursday, April 18, 2013

25. Trapplique - Part 2

Lol. I must have sounded tired and worn out yesterday in my post about the bathroom renovation. In truth the person really needing kudos is Josh. I'm fired up to fix all the closets in the house on top of everything else and the poor guy is struggling to find a clean towel amid all the chaos and confusion.

Personally I'm revved up and ready to go! So much so that I'm even going to continue to post videos during the remodel! Didn't I tell you I find this kind of thing energizing?

So today let's finish up Trapplique! The steps left to do are simple: lay out the pieces on the quilt:

free motion quilting | Leah Day

Hand baste them in place with water soluble thread. We're using this so we don't have to worry about picking the stitches out later. This thread will just dissolve when we soak and block the quilt.

The next step is optional, but I found it pretty important for this particular quilt. Do a simple zigzag down along all the edges to hold the pieces in place. I did this in free motion, but you could use a walking foot if you were more comfortable with that.

Why did I do this in free motion? I've been experimenting a bit with free motion zigzag just for fun. It's actually pretty easy to control and faster to applique because you could potentially zigzag, then filler quilt at the same time by switching from a zigzag to a straight stitch. You know how much I hate to change feet, so I'm just learning how to applique with my free motion foot on instead!

For this tacking zigzag, I used regular thread in the video, but by the time I finished shooting, I realized that more water soluble would probably make this job easier too. This stitching will be covered, but it'd be nice not to have to worry about the odd weird stitch and just use wash away thread for this too.

Which by the way, Express Your Love is NOT a beginner level trapplique quilt. All those little pieces swirling in and out are really tricky to line up properly. I can't claim mine is in any way perfect. Not a bit!

free motion quilting | Leah Day

Finally after everything is generally secure and in place, now it's time to satin stitch! I used a super wide zigzag with my machine at 6mm wide and .20mm long and slowly stitched forward and hit the reverse button anytime I saw a gap in the stitching.

Suffice it to say, satin stitching is VERY boring. I had to give myself lots of incentives like a piece of chocolate for every lock of breath completed because it was just so slow and tedious. I think I've gained 3 pounds just to muscle through this boring bit. Still, this is a step that can't be rushed if you want a nice, smooth, perfect satin stitch finish.

Now just make sure that you take off your Supreme Slider before starting the satin stitch! If you have your walking foot on, you definitely shouldn't have the slider on because it will be ground against the feed dogs.

So now that I've written all this out, now it's time to watch it!

I'm still having aspect ratio problems. If this video appears squished to you, switch to Mozilla Firefox browser and watch it there. Youtube is having a serious glitch in the upload and changing all my videos as they get on the site, then I have to manually stretch the video back with a tag, but it isn't perfect and isn't displaying correctly for everyone.

But as always, this is the best I can do! Enjoy!

Let's go quilt,

Leah Day


  1. You may be tired, but this is looking fantastic and you will look back and think it is all so worth it.

  2. This is a really wonderful quilt. You will look back and think it was so worth all the effort. Thank you for inspiring me.

  3. Really glad to see this, as I love, love, love using freemotion zigzag. So much faster than using the feed dogs and the regular or walking foot! And the more you do it, the more perfect it looks. The nice thing is being able to rotate the fabric without lifting the foot every time.

    Leah, speaking of lifting the foot, I have been meaning to ask you if you have issues with being able to comfortably 'reach' the knee lifter on the 7700 when you're sitting down. I had to spread my legs so wide to push against the lifter that it was awkward and uncomfortable. This was AFTER I had already adjusted it as close to me as possible! So I ended up wrapping bubble wrap around the lifter until it was think enough that my thigh came more easily into contact with it and I could push with no strain. I hope that makes sense. Yes, I have long, skinny thighs (the only skinny thing about me anymore, lol), but still, they're not exactly just sticks, either. Did you have any trouble with reaching yours? Thanks! Linda

  4. Leah - it looks like you FMQ on the Goddess' body..what did you do there to add texture??


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