Option #1: Free-Motion Quilting Design
An allover meandering or puzzle quilting design is commonly called stippling. It involves a series of random curves closely spaced where lines do not cross.
Mark Quilt Top
Using a water-soluble marker or chalk and referring to Stipple Diagram, mark quilting lines on quilt top. Divide areas into workable sections, starting at one edge and working to the opposite edge. (Marked lines give you confidence as you begin to stitch.) Although four hourglass blocks are shown, use the same stitching technique across the entire quilt top.
Assemble Quilt Layers
Prepare the quilt sandwich (marked quilt top, batting, and backing).
Set Up Machine
Remove presser foot and install a free-motion or darning foot. Lower the presser foot. (Even though the darning foot does not touch the quilt top when the presser foot is lowered, lowering it will prevent the quilt from jumping up and down as the needle goes in and out. It also engages the tension discs, which will make your stitches even and more taut.) Add a new machine needle, and thread the machine and bobbin with 50-weight, 100% cotton thread. Use a quilt-sandwich swatch to test thread/needle/tension combination and stitch length.
1. Begin stitching at the upper left-hand corner of the quilt top. Move quilt sandwich as you stitch (with feed dogs down, fabric layers won’t move unless you move them), working to right-hand side, following the red quilting lines as shown in the Stipple Diagram.
2. Pivot 180º and continue quilting as before, following the green quilting lines as shown on the Stipple Diagram.
3. Pivot 180º and continue quilting as before, following the blue quilting lines as shown on the Stipple Diagram, to complete stipple design. Baste remaining unstitched edges.
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