The Free Motion Quilting Project: FMQ Friday - Quilting from Jail

Friday, May 31, 2013

FMQ Friday - Quilting from Jail

No, don't freak out, I'm not really in JAIL! Lol.

But this morning I pretended I was in jail in order to force my brain back into the deep concentrated mode I need to be in for free motion quilting large projects. For the last 3 weeks my brain has been so disconnected and distracted by everything going on that I barely quilted at all.

Cycles like this tend to feed one another. The more you think "I'm too busy! I'm too busy!" then the more busy you will tend to become. I also find if I am constantly repeating to myself "I have no time to quilt!" then I will invariably have absolutely no time to quilt.

I had to reprogram my noggin this morning to remind myself that James is out of school. It was 6 am and no one was awake, there was nowhere I needed to be, and nothing I needed to do except quilt.

I shut the door to my quilting room and pretended I was locked in jail. I can't get out until this job is finished!

free motion quilting | Leah Day
Of course, this will only work if the quilt or project you're working on can actually be done in the time frame you have to quilt. I'm not suggesting we all chain ourselves to our sewing machines until every UFO is done!

But today, this kind of forceful reprogramming of my morning quilting schedule was just what I needed. I quilted for 4 hours straight and when I finally left the room, I finally felt calm and collected and satisfied with my work.

This translated to feeling far more ready to interact with my family. I've worked hard at losing the destructive feelings of guilt when I quilt for long periods of time with the door shut. Today I came upstairs ready to make a snack, play some games, and talk to James and Josh about our weekend.

While cycles can be hard to pull out of, this is definitely a reset method that works for me. Long periods of quilting remind me how much I love this activity and how much I want to do it every single day.

Which is a great way to feel when I'm just getting ready to take Duchess Reigns back off the wall and begin the next phase of that quilt. If attitude is everything, I'm in the right place to take on this next challenge!

free motion quilting | Leah Day

So what about you? Have you been out of the loop with quilting this month and are trying to get back on the ball? Link up with us and share whatever you've quilted (or wish you'd quilted) this week!

Simple rules for the FMQ Friday link up:

1. Link up with a post that features something about Free Motion Quilting (FMQ).
2. Somewhere in your post, you must link back here, or you can just post the FMQF button in your sidebar.
3. Comment on at least a few of the other FMQF links. Share your love of free motion quilting and make this weekly link up a fun way to connect.

Let's go quilt!

Leah Day


  1. I have a question. How did you get rid of those "destructive feelings of guilt"? I would love to know how to do this! Have a super day!

  2. Duchess Reigns looks amazing, cant wait to see more of her:-) Thanks for hosting us!

  3. I don't have anything to show, but I just wanted to let you know that I love what you did while in "jail"! Sometimes we "gotta do what we gotta do" to get things done. Have a great weekend!

  4. Kudos to you for being up at 6:00 a.m. now that James is out of school!!! I would have slept in! So happy you got that much quilting time in, and I totally understand how satisfying and calming it was, and how it must have balanced and centered you and made you ready for your weekend. So cool!

  5. I applaud your determination to start working at 6am. I wish I could have the discipline to do it, but I'm also worried that I'd wake my son up since my sewing studio is right next to his room. When you sew, do you listen to music or podcasts? I'm always curious as to what people are listening to while in the quilting groove.

  6. It sounds like you have figured out what works for you. That is the hardest part.. Good luck with your routine and have a wonderful summer


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