Sunday, September 30, 2012

Free motion quilting under the wire

I forgot about September's Free-Motion Challenge project! I confess to doing this one totally at the last minute. One reason is that I do not like this motif. It's too traditional. In addition, I find it very difficult to follow a drawn line while free-motion quilting; I much prefer the doodling style that is completely eyeballed. But not being good at something isn't an excuse not to do it, as I frequently tell my boys (although it does become an explanatory factor in procrastination) -- it means it's time to practice!

I traced the flower right onto the fabric using a Frixion pen. This is a really great tool for quilting, and it's both cheap and readily available. When you hit the ink with an iron, it completely disappears, and then (ostensibly) washes right out leaving no trace at all. The heat erasing works so well that, if you iron your fabric before tracing, you actually have to wait for the fabric to cool off before you can draw on it.

I will definitely be practicing this technique more, because I have big plans to make a presidential caricatures quilt sometime in the next year or so.
I traced the motif right from the paper with a Pilot FriXion pen.
In progress. I love how delicate this foot looks as it glides over the fabric...
At this point the ink is still visible. 
Ink removed! A respectable attempt, but not winning any awards.


  1. I procrastinated, too -- mine linked up just a couple of hours before yours. And, for not liking the motif and all, your piece came out pretty good -- if your thread was tone on tone instead of contrast, it would probably look perfect. Nicely done!

    So, FriXion pen for marking quilting designs? I'm going to have to try that! I used those disappearing pens for this challenge, and the ink was disappearing on me before I even got over to the sewing machine!

    1. I think the pack of 3 pens was about $5 at Office Depot. Love them!

  2. Check them out on each piece of fabric. Until you wash the ink out, you can get some discoloration after ironing. The ink goes away but leaves a faint pale line where the ink was. In my experience, once the piece is washed, it all goes away. But it is always best to check before you use ANY type of marking pen or pencil.