Is the “Triple ‘P’”……….”Practice, Practice, Practice”!!! Nothing (not even something super enjoyable!) comes without a price of some sort. It is a fact. Absorb that truth………..then act!!!!! Now, just like exercise, a practice session has its rewards but not usually up front or right away. What to do? In the “Beginning FMQ Workshops” that I teach, one of the first/important skills to be mastered is using your sewing/quilting machine enough that it becomes an extension of ‘you’. Your ears pick up the sounds that it makes and they correspond to the pressure your foot is exerting on the power pedal. These skills only come by practice and I’m here to suggest a fun method of doing just that. So simple. Here’s a link to Jenny Bowker’s article in “Machine Quilting Unlimited” magazine’s “web extras” that is a free PDf download further explaining the concept. The following photo is a practice piece I did when I first got my Juki TL2010Q (4+ years ago) and was trying to “become one” with it!!!!! I randomly cut a fabric scrap from a large floral piece and, using a spray bond, adhered it to a piece of muslin, which I “sandwiched”. The huge advantage to this is that I had a starting point!!! Inspiration!!! Something to expand on and, at the same time, practice getting used to the machine! “Thread painting”, echo quilting/stitching….whatever you want to call it, I took my cues from the fabric design and jumped in……….and had fun learning. In my workshops, at the end of the class, I send each participant home with a random scrap on a muslin to have fun with. Hopefully this will be the springboard to many fulfilling hours of creating with their machines. Many times, when faced with that daunting quilt sandwich that holds so many possibilities (sometimes way too many!), I pull back and just look at it. The fabrics/prints/designs, the piecing lines, etc, to see if there’s inspiration there just waiting to be released!!! I refer to this step as “listening to the quilt”!
So, if there’s that project on a shelf, or table, that’s begging for some attention, ‘go for it’! You can do it………all it takes is……..Practice, Practice, Practice!