All In Good Time | A Free Motion Quilting Top Tip

What is my top tip for free motion quilting? It’s simple…time!

I know what you are all saying…that’s great Amy but I don’t exactly have much time to spare at the moment (or ever!). I hear you. If I had more time to spend on free motion quilting then I would have a lot more than just eight motifs under my belt. But eight is still far more than I had a few months ago…which was a grand total of zero.

And that is sort of the point. I’m taking my FMQ journey as a marathon rather than a sprint. If I’m being honest then this is a choice mostly born out of circumstances (and my general lack of time) but that doesn’t mean it isn’t working for me, and when I do find time I really do see huge improvements. It might not be a very scientific equation but I’m pretty confident that you’ll find that time is the vital to your progress too and that’s why it is my number one top tip!

Obviously I’m not trying to say that time alone makes for an accomplished free motion quilter. From what I have learnt so far (and I still have lots of learn!), for me another two really important factors are…

  1. Tension; this can take some time (there’s that word again!) to get right and it is important to check your tension whenever you sit down to some free motion quilting but it is never going to look great until the tension is correct.
  2. Speed; I’m talking about the speed of your needle AND the speed you move your hands/quilt. These work together and its about finding the right combination for you. Some people go fast and some go slower, there’s no right or wrong, it is what works for you but it is important to take the time (this is turning into a theme!) to experiment with different combinations to find your quilting sweet-spot.

If any of this has piqued your interested about trying your hand at free motion quilting then you can dip your toe in for free using HollyAnne of String and Story’s FMQ Launch Pad. It is a Facebook-based event and will help you achieve some FMQ “wins” before perhaps committing to the full FMQ Academy. Launch Pad is the perfect first step to build your confidence and sort out any teething issues that might have been stopping your progress.


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