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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

October FMQ Challenge

October Sew Cal Gal's FMQ Challenge Entry!
 This month our expert was Teri Lucas, whose tutorial was actually pretty challenging for me. She asked us to quilt on silk or a silk/cotton blend with two different layers of batting (cotton underneath and wool on top) and with different threads (meaning starting and stopping multiple times.) She also encouraged us to use our seam rippers to get things just the way we wanted them.

I did use the materials she requested - a light green dupioni silk for the top layer, cotton and wool batting, and both trilobal polyester and metallic threads. I used a light spray basting to get the silk to adhere to the wool batting - couldn't seem to get safety pins through the layers without making big holes and pulls in the silk.

We started by writing our name, then filling around with various filler patterns. My results:

The least successful filler was the nautilus shell pattern with the pebbles. I had done a lot of drawing, but it just didn't seem to work for me. Needs more practice. I did like the way the wool layer and the silk top made the quilting very puffy and well defined. Thank you, Teri for the challenge. I will probably use wool batting and/or a combination a lot more now that I see what it does. And silk when I can afford it...

I also took a workshop from Ann Fahl this month, Mastering Metallics. We embroidered and quilted with metallic thread which was challenging (the stuff breaks a lot!) but really beautiful and fun to see the sparkle. Ann is a great teacher and she gave us so many tips on adjusting our machines to minimize the breaking. I'm posting a picture of my project, though it's hard to see the sparkle so it really doesn't do the piece justice. But it was fun and I love the results.
They say practice makes perfect. Well, it definitely makes "better". My quilting has improved a lot this year, thanks mainly to the Sew Cal Gal Challenge. Just two more months. Can't wait to see what they'll bring!


  1. Hi Kearstie, I think your nautilus shells look great. I would love to read more about the Mastering Metallics workshop you took. I tried using metallics with lots of thread breakage.. so frustrating.

    1. Hi Tammy! Ann Fahl's Mastering Metallics workshop was great! She's a really upbeat person and puts you at ease right away. We got a copy of her booklet Mastering Metallics with the workshop; it has a lot of tips on avoiding breakage. It's available on her website at Definitely worth the money if you want to work with metallic threads! I saw you did the October Bonus project with machine trapunto. Really beautiful! I may try it later this month, hope I can make mine look half as good!

  2. Both of your pieces look wonderful! How great that you were able to take a workshop with Ann Fahl! Her style of quilting makes everything look like FUN, and I'll bet she is fun in person too!

    1. Thanks! Ann Fahl was wonderful; lots of fun and so accepting... I had a great time! I would recommend her workshops to anyone wanting to improve any aspect of quilting. I was lucky my guild chose her as a presenter.