Custom Quilts, Sewing, Mommyhood and general silliness

Archive for August, 2011

The Long Awaited Waves Quilting Post


I know you’ve been waiting a long time for this. Remember two (okay three) weeks ago when I teased you with the promise of an in-depth instruction-filled post on my favorite quilting technique. Well, I’m finally delivering. Sorry for the delay.

Example of Waves Quilting

Yemi's Quilt Front

I give you Yemi’s Quilt Front. This lovely was made for a very special little lady. The squares are actually from a Charm Pack for a fabric line I cannot remember. The Sashing is a Kona color I can’t remember and the border and binding are from my stash.

That was way helpful, right…

As you can see, the quilting creates ripples across the quilt. Here’s the back which gives a better view of the detail.

Waves Quilting

Yemi's Quilt Back

Can you see the waves? I LOVE this quilting technique. It is super easy to do and very forgiving. Also, did I mention that it is quick? Yes…super quick. Probably harder to do on a large quilt, but I haven’t attempted that yet. There are no crossing seams, so no major puckers. And I also like that it can look different every time.

Wanna try it out for yourself? Here’s a quick little diagram set of instructions to get you started. You will absolutely need a walking foot for your machine. Otherwise, just baste as best you can and then start your engine.

Step One

The first line of stitching should meander in large waves across the middle-ish of the quilt. I would advise you to make large swooping waves instead of short pointy waves. It is a little easier to follow the big swoopy waves in the following steps.

I also find it easier to hold the fabric a little farther away from the needle and a little wider than normal. It allows me to get more perspective on the size of my waves.

Here’s a little illustration of what I mean:

Placement Diagram

Clear as mud…ok, good. Here’s step two:

Step Two

Now you place your walking foot the desired distance away from the first stitching line. Now stitch an echo of your first stitching line using your walking foot as a guide for distance. In this quilt, I believe I used the outside edge of my quilting foot. Its ok if you get a little closer or farther away. You have some wiggle room. Just try to keep your quilting smooth and even.

Continue echo quilting each previous line until you reach the quilt edge. Rotate 180 degrees and start echoing from the original quilting line back in step one. Continue echo quilting each previous line until you reach the quilt edge. Here’s what it should look like all finished up:

End Result of Waves Quilting

Notice how it isn’t perfect. That’s why I like it. It becomes very organic. No harsh edges, just smooth and supple. Almost reminds me of striations in the soil or in a rock.

Close up of Back and Quilting

It adds some great texture to a quilt without overpowering the fabrics.

Yemi's Quilt

The variations are endless. Make your stitching farther apart or closer together. Maybe put an island in the waves and let them roll away. (P.S. I am sure someone has done this type of quilting before, I just wasn’t sure what it is called. I don’t claim to have invented this type of quilting…just sharing my latest quilting adventure…end disclaimer).

Give it a try, and let me know how it goes.


The Jaime Baby Quilt

When we first moved to Bakersfield, I joined a local MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) Group. I could write several posts of this incredible organization and all the wonderful people and wonderful ways it has helped me become a better mother and…well…just plain stay sane.

But this post isn’t about MOPS. Although, if you are a new mom, or about to be a new mom, find a MOPS group…go to it…you’ll love it.

Anywho…Through MOPS I met Jaime. Jaime sews…a lot. And she’s awesome. You should check out her blog. Jaime just had a beautiful little girl, and I was honored to make a baby quilt for her and her new baby.

The quilt measures approx. 42″ x 42″. The fabrics are a mix from my stash. Most were used previously in this quilt. I started with a general idea and sketched a few designs out on graph paper. After a few placement changes on the design wall, it went together pretty quick.

The back is pieced with every scrap I had left. The quilting is my new favorite style. I free-sew a wavy line down the middle-ish and then echo quilt out from there. Next week I will post another quilt using the same design, but with better pictures. It goes quick…you can eye-ball it…and it is very forgiving.

And of course, the quilt is finished with a nice bias-cut binding to make those stripes just twirl all around.

I hope Baby E enjoys it…abuses it…spits up on it…chews on it…you get the picture…