The Free Motion Quilting Project: Tales from the Background Quilt

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Tales from the Background Quilt

It's Wednesday and time to see what's really being quilted on my sewing machine! Today I'm getting lost in Swirling Feathers, a fun design I love to use when needing to cover loads of space in a short amount of time:

free motion quilting | Leah Day

What is needing to be quilted so quickly? A new quilted background for videos!

free motion quilting | Leah Day

This was where the background was at last week. Over the weekend I pulled out my Jacquard paints and went to town with metallic colors on the face of the goddess. It took a bit of fiddling as I started with this set of colors that...well...didn't work so well together...

After a good bit of fiddling, I decided the blue and green had to go and luckily was able to paint over those colors with more metallic bronze and burnt orange. This combination works well and is quite similar to my new goddess logo too.

free motion quilting | Leah Day

After the painting was finished, it was time to layout the letters above and below the goddess design. After a lot of back and forth, I decided against fusing fabric for the letters. Instead I cut out the letters in paper, trimmed them up to make a new font, then laid them out on the quilt and marked the outlines for quilting:

free motion quilting | Leah Day

So right now the letters are just quilted with parallel lines, but I plan to fill in these areas with more paint...if I could only pick the right color!

In the meantime, it was time to pick quilting designs and thread color. In situations like this, I don't guess, I TEST! I stitched out small samples on leftover purple fabric to gauge thread color and design and pinned it up to the left of the goddess face before shooting the photo.

It's always easier to get an idea of what a design will look like if you've actually stitched it out and have a sample close by. I ended up deciding to use Paisley quilted with a light purple color and Swirling Feathers with a medium blue color. The subtle contrast is quite nice!

free motion quilting | Leah Day

After quilting the feathers, I still need to pick one last design for the remaining rays. I'm thinking some straight lines and sharp angles and a darker color of purple thread. As before, I'll probably test the design and thread color on a small scrap first, just to make sure it's not conflicting badly with the other colors in the background.

So a lot of quilting remains and no, this isn't a project I can finish in 1 hour or less. *Sign* I'll likely feel better about all my various overwhelming projects after baking some cookies. At least cookies can be finished in 30 minutes, make the house smell wonderful, and...oh yeah...I can EAT THEM!

Let's go quilt,



  1. Swirling absolute FAVE quilting motif!!!!!! Auditioning is a mandatory step in my plans, also! Lookin' great and...and....are the cookies g-g-gone??? Sigh....Hugs....

  2. gorgeous Leah!! I've just bought a sweet 16 - delivery next week - very excited! I'm thinking about another FMQAL - have an idea. Tried to email you but it bounced back. Have you changed emails?


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