Sunday, 10 May 2015

May 2015 FMQ Challenge

This is a very long post...I reckon I need to split up process and product a bit in the future.

The expert this month is Cindy Needham. Again, I was able to make use of the Craftsy classes that I have purchased in the last two months. I have both of Cindy Needham's classes and have watched them with interest over the last few months. I am yet to make  the Wholecloth as far as enlarging the design and taping it altogether.

One of the things that struck me when I was first watching the classes was Cindy's exploration of ready-made stencils and what you can do with them. Actually I was blown away with some of the quilts that she had produced using two very simple stencils, just alternating them. So, for this challenge I used this idea and had a look around for a suitable stencil as I did not just want to repeat what she had done with the Double Wedding Ring stencils.

I recently got the Score of Four stencil from Full Line Stencils and decided to use the ugly duckling on the far right in the top row.

Was not sure whether it would work repeating this design over a larger area, but thought it would be fun to try out. The stencil comes to 5" placed on point and of course, I chose the more fiddly approach, putting it on point. Actually not a lot of planning went into this, it was more like...let's just see where this will take us.

I did not use white chalk to mark this as I could hardly see it on the beige fabric and also did decide against the blue chalk as the blue chalk marks do not come out easily (did a trial on some calico and the blue marks literally needed washing and scrubbing to come out...will not be using the blue chalk again). In the end I traced the design using a light box.

Stitched out repeated design placing stencil on point
After stitching out the first few, I decided to make it into a tile design rather than spreading it over the entire top. Had to erase some of my other blue markings carefully which looked messy, but I needed to make room for the next idea of putting grids on the sides. Ever since the first pillow I have become rather fond of grids (rather odd as I used to really not like them at all).

Got carried away and stitched out all four sides with a 1/2in grid which, in itself, looked great.
But can you see what is happening? I now had the blobs of unquilted area really come to the foreground. Yep, did not consider this at all...after some indecision, ended up stitching them down with just a simple cross through them. This made the whole picture look much more uniform.
Much better...after this, I tried some of the grid designs that Cindy teaches in her class "Design It, Quilt It".

And here it is...the finished product
Finished pillow
For some reason this did not photograph that well...very rainy, low light day today!
My favourite - 1/2in cathedral window grid

Double grid

Checkerboard grid

Combination grid (not part of Cindy's class, just gave that a go)
The back - oversized cathedral window grid

Linking up to the May 2015 Freemotion quilting Challenge over at Quiltshopgal. Thank you Darlene for hosting this and thank you, Cindy, for those wonderful classes.



  1. Beautiful work, Karin! I didn't keep up with the FMQ challenges but will take a look at this. I love what you did! It's gorgeous!

  2. Love, love, love! I'm so glad that you wrote a longer post and shared your process, Karin!

  3. Karin your pillow looks fantastic, well done~

  4. Oh Karin, you make it look so easy but I know its not. Love seeing how your designs come together, thanks for the inspiration.

  5. Oh I love, love, love this pillow!! Fantastic work :-)

  6. Absolutely stunning. Such an elegant feel to it. You did a fantastic job. I think that is going to become an heirloom pillow.


  7. I love it!! You have done a beautiful job with this challenge - gorgeous!

  8. It is stunning!!! what a great job with your quilting!!!

  9. Your pillow is very beautiful! I love it.

  10. Your pillow looks so fantastic

  11. love your cushion and the different corners... great planning...

  12. Stunning pillow! Wonderful grid work, Karin :-)

  13. That's a lovely quilting. I like the pattern in the middle a lot.


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