Today is the third post and it's about the designs I choose to hand quilt on my quilts.
1. This is one of the very first quilts I hand quilted. I used masking tape to mark diagonal lines across the squares and hand quilted in black cotton. It was a good place to start.
2. I then moved onto quilting 1/4" from the seam. I still used masking tape but found my needle kept getting sticky from the tape (because I stitched too close to the tape). This is when I started using DMC Perle 8.
3. I used a similar technique on Bordered Peacocks, but I used wider masking tape because I wanted to quilt 1" from the edge because the area to fill was larger.
4. On this Radiant Poppies quilt I wanted to break away from 1/4" from the edge, so I drew straight lines across the quilt with a washable blue marker. I marked the lines in groups of 3.
5. Then I decided I wanted to try free hand quilting with no marked lines! I used Dazzle thread from Wonderfil here (it has built in sparkle). I quilted my first wavy line down the middle of the tree, and then worked out to the edges on either side of it.
6. I intended to hand quilt this wall hanging in pink Razzle from Wonderfil, but it was too hard to get the thick thread through the Batiks so I just did some accent hand quilting and then reverted to machine quilting for the rest of it. There's a time and place for everything.
7. Last year I made this wall hanging and decided to quilt circles on it! I used a chalk pencil and traced around some plates from my kitchen. This is where I started using Aurifil 12wt. It's thinner than perle 8 and is lovely and soft.
8. I made my own cloud templates for My Small World. I don't think they really show up on the finished quilt, but they certainly add texture to the sky area. I didn't want to quilt straight lines in the sky.
9. On Oh! Christmas Tree I decided to emphasise the stars on the background fabric. I didn't have to mark any lines, I just quilted over the designs in the fabric. I'm really pleased with how this one turned out.
I echo quilted around the wool felt applique to make the birds and flowers stand out.
10. I don't normally do cross hatching, but decided a small taste of it would work well on my Possum Magic quilt (this isn't finished yet).
11. I decided to quilt quite densely on this English Paper Pieced quilt. I marked the lines with a hera marker and that's now my preferred method of marking. I didn't want to quilt in the ditch because the seam allowances can be bulky on English Paper Piecing.
12. Last photo - another English Paper Pieced quilt I quilted last year stiching 1/4" from the edge. this is still my default option if I can't think of any other designs. Now I use Hera markers to mark the quilting lines. I much prefer them to masking tape now.
So, the possibilities are endless - just as they are for machine quilting. I keep trying to stitch without marking lines, but if I want a straight line it's quicker for me to just mark it. Otherwise I keep unpicking my stitches because they're not straight enough.
I hope these photos help some of you wondering what to quilt onto your quilts.
Remember: If you're itching to give it a go, and don't know where to start, I highly recommend this video by Sarah Fielke - it's how I learnt. I watched it again and again until I was happy with my own technique.