Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Stippling - A Little Wiggle Room

My First Attempts at Sewing Machine Stippling

Ok, drop your feed dogs.  You're under arrest.

On my bucket list of things to do is "learning how to stipple" (free motion quilting).

The steps are:
  • Drop your feed dogs on the sewing machine
  • Install quilting foot
  • Start with new needle!
  • Set machine tension to 2
  • Make practice squares (three layers of fabric)
  • Sew the wiggle (looks like puzzle pieces or brain matter?)
I made some quilted fabric out of Navy Blue Satin with Polar Fleece for batting.  

I cut oversized pieces of:

Top layer - satin
Middle layer - polar fleece
Bottom layer - satin

Polar fleece used for batting (middle layer)

You can see the sewing machine stippling binds (quilts) all three layers together.

So far, the project looked like I had imagined it would.  I put the stippled fabric in the machine embroidery hoop, and embroidered Gearhart--my dear friends Janet and Jerry's last name.

Left is a swatch of the satin, and to the right the polar fleece, and in the center the pocket panel for a fancy tote bag for Janet and Jerry Gearhart. 

Guess what?  I didn't like the embroidery thread color, so I started over.  I was practicing, so why not?

Yes, this is better.  A little more contrast using silver embroidery thread.

I mailed this bag on Monday and with any luck, on Wednesday Janet and Jerry will have their quilted tote bag.  I added a key fob and double button (my trademark--a double button).

Opened, it holds quite a bit.

Message to Janet and Jerry--there will be some super soft polar fleece bags coming your way too for the interior of this bag.  Thought it might be used to carry around your handpainted porcelain pieces when you go to shows.  I had such a great time attending your CAPA (porcelain artists) convention and was so proud to see you both receive such wonderful tributes from your peers. 


  1. There was a famous singer about 100 years ago named Elena Gerhardt. I wonder if there is any connection.

    p.s. Anything in the sewing/weaving category seems like black magic to me.

  2. What a great project and stunning gift. As a button collector, I'm tickled that you use buttons as a signature piece. Do you take two buttons and sew them together, on top of each other?

  3. As the lucky recipient of this project, I can only say it's so much nicer than it looks in the pictures. Linda, you're so so many areas. Seems you can do about anything. You're such a great friend. We love reading about all of your projects. Can't wait to see all the things that come out of your studio once it's completed. Thanks so much.

  4. Hi Linda,
    This is the most glamourous tote bag I've ever seen.

  5. Wow, this looks great! I also think that the silver embroidery looks much better on the second try.

    I recognize this pattern as "Cornelli Lace", since my Mom used to use it fairly often on cakes (she was an amazing cake decorator).

  6. Wow, and this was a first attempt! What an amazing tote bag! Your friend is right, you can do just about anything with sheer perfection. Brilliant.


  7. Becky Jo Elias AvilaApril 1, 2012 at 6:14 AM

    Hi Linda This is Becky Jo How are you? Beth gave me your E mail and I sure was glad to have found you. My Email is Hope to hear from you soon.