Life is indeed a stitch!
Berryhill Heirlooms and Susie Gay present techniques, heirloom sewing, hand embroidery and other musings that you will enjoy and appreciate. Come and join in the fun with Susie, a Home Economist, and savor a little rest from your hectic day...and yes, it's a Degree she uses every day!

Sunday, March 28, 2021

Medallion Machine Quilting

I have a confession. I've never done free-motion embroidery before on my Pfaff 7570.And now I'm going to learn it on my Medallion Quilt. Hmmm....should be interesting.

First I had to get the big instruction book out and actually read it. My Pfaff 7570 has a built-in even-feed system, an absolute must for machine quilting (most machines don't and you have to purchaser an extra attachment). Then I attached the free-motion embroidery foot (foot #6), lowered the feed dogs and put the foot into the darning position (I call it half mast since it's between all the way up and down). I tightened the tension a little to make sure I had good stitches on the quilt back.

Using free motion embroidery makes it a whole lot easier to quilt the figures in the center Toile medallion rather than constantly twisting and turning the quilt around to get where I need to go.  The Fons and Porter quilting grip gloves really help! This machine quilting is a new experience for me and I always enjoy a challenge! I worked on and off for four days quilting figures, trees, wheat and hills and valleys, horizons. A veritable set of five scenes in all. Oh, and the verse for Bonny Bonny Charlie, too, the theme of this vintage 1959 Williamsburg Toile.

The center round border was done with an open toe foot and regular machine settings, as was the large square border. The photo below shows the open toe foot foot but I found it wasn't a good choice for stitching in the ditch between the antique linen and red floral.

So I changed to a better foot: the narrow edge stitch foot which has a 'blade' (does not cut anything) that acts as a guide between two pieces of fabric or on a seam. Perfect for this technique!
The rest of the quilting is mostly stitching-in-the-ditch on the seam lines using this foot and regular machine settings. Every "seam" is started and ended with 8-10 tiny stitches (0.5mm length) then 2.5mm for the quilting.
How do you manage a large quilt when machine quilting?  You roll it up to expose the area to work on. 
I re-roll the quilt to expose the area to be worked on as I go. The quilting is worked in a specific order to keep the quilt from getting off-kilter, or stretched. See the photo below and the drawing on the left with the arrows that's the order, or direction, for quilting this, finishing top and bottom, then each side. 
When all of the stitching in the ditch is completed then I will tackle the two borders with quilted designs using the "Borders Made Easy" that I purchased. That's another challenge!!

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