Craftsy Month – Fearless Free-Motion Quilting

freemotion2This post is part of Craftsy Review Month on Sew Sweetness. To see full schedule of posts, click here! Today’s post is from Emily of Mommy’s Naptime! Emily really loves quilting small-scale; check out her blog and Instagram!

Hello! I’m here today with a review of the Fearless Free Motion Quilting class by Robbi Eklow. Some of the more modern quilters may not be aware of Robbi’s work, she has made a name for herself over the years as an award winning quilter and teacher. You might know her as “The Goddess of the Last Minute” for her articles seen for years in the Quilting Arts magazine. She does fantastic work, and happens to be a friend of mine from my local quilt guild. Robbi has been a great influence in my quilting, and she gives her advice freely without fear. She’s like a quilt mom, she’ll give you great advice, and she won’t get mad if you don’t follow it. I’m lucky to have that quilting advice. As a participant in her Craftsy class you’ll get Robbi’s excellent advice too.

Craftsy class review - Fearless Free-Motion Quilting
The class is broken up into seven lessons that are about 15 minutes each. These lessons cover several free motion quilt motifs including basket weave, fans, spirals, leaves, s-curves, and flowers. Each lesson gives various tips and suggestions for ways to use each motif. At the end of each lesson the class participants are urged to do their homework  — and try these for themselves!
Here is my first practice sample. It’s a little rough, but I learned a lot!

I consider myself fairly proficient at free motion quilting, but I rarely take the time to really practice new designs. Doing the homework for each lesson really helped me build a level of comfort with those motifs. Some of them came easily to me (spirals, leaves, s-curves), but others were much more challenging to me since they were very different than my normal go-to motifs. I left several questions throughout the lessons, and Robbi answered very quickly with helpful replies. In reading her replies to the other participants’ questions I learned even more. This is really helpful since a question may come up while you’re practicing. Also – Robbi did encourage me to push myself past the motifs that were comfortable to me, pushing me to grow.

This is my second sample. The following a stem motif is easier for me,
and a curved edge basket weave feels more natural.
In all, I feel a lot more comfortable using various new-to-me quilt motifs. I spent some time this weekend practicing the two of the motifs from the class, the “following a stem” (from lesson 4), and the “basket weave” (from lesson 1). Following a stem comes very easily to me – it’s just one step away from one of my go-to motifs, but the basket weave is very challenging for me – I know if I were to slow down a bit I’d be better at it, but I really like going fast. As a result I tended to get a little bit of a thread knot at the corners where my hands hesitated. I’m sure I’ll get more proficient at this as I practice a bit more. I combined these two motifs to quilt this pillow. That basket weave, while challenging, is a really great filler behind other motifs!
My final sample. This quilting on this pillow was fun, and a little challenging.
Robbi is an excellent teacher, and I’d encourage you to take this class if you’re hoping to learn additional quilt motifs to up your free motion quilting game.
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