Wednesday, 27 July 2011

A Sketchy Welcome!

I've been working on my new programme of classes, starting in September, and thought I'd do a few posts about some of the projects I'm planning to teach.

I try to make/design things that I'd be happy to have in my own home.  Today I'll show you my Welcome Wallhanging!

I wanted a rustic yet modern banner for my hall, and so combined linen with New England colours, and applied an applique technique called 'Sketching'.

Sketching is a form of Free Motion Quilting (FMQ) and it is great fun because to achieve the desired look, you really want a few wiggly lines in there - perfect!!  Poppy Teffrey's book 'Free & Easy Stitch Style' was my inspiration.

I adapted a Microsoft Word Font to get the lettering just right, and have templates printed out for the class to use. The wire quilt hanger (16") was from The Cotton Patch, but I've also seen them on Ebay and other online suppliers.

In order to free motion quilt on your machine, you have to be able to either drop the feed dogs (the zagged edged feeders under the needle plate) or cover them over with a specially fitting cover.  Have a look at your instruction manual for how to do this on your machine, or take your machine to your local Sewing Machine suppliers & they will show you how.

You will also need a FMQ foot (or Darning foot) for this technique.

This is for a Janome, but most FMQ feet are similar in shape.

The finished size of the wallhanging is 8" x 20".  At the moment we are in the process of painting our hall/stairs/landing (in a 3 storey Victorian semi!!!).  I'm looking forward to getting the painting finished so I can hang up my 'Welcome'.

I have to let you into a secret!  This is the 2nd Welcome Banner I've had to make.  The first one ended up looking like this after the dog decided she wanted her own personal welcome.......

She has a fetish for buttons!  She ate all 5 of them!
She did me a favour really, because in making the 2nd one, I decided to iron in some vilene (which helps the banner hang better) and I shortened the hanging tabs.  Having said that, I'm not ready for her to become Quality Control on future designs!

I hope this 4 week project appeals to folks, who can easily adapt the colours and style to suit, use up some scraps, and also get a fun introduction to FMQ.


  1. Glad you had another go, its lovely :-) In fact I bet the dog would say its delicious ;-)

  2. So that was the dogs dinner! Poor banner. The replacement is lovely though. It will look great in your freshly painted hallway.

  3. Oh no! Bad pup! The new one, I dare say, looks much better though!

    My friends dog once ate the entire contents of my makeup bag. I was not impressed.

  4. Oh it is brilliant Judith, I'm not surprised you were livid at the mutt!
    Good luck with all the painting x

  5. That looks fantastic. I am going to try the sketching over the summer, I have seen it quite a bit and I love the effect

  6. This would be very Welcome in my home anytime! What a fab and fun project for your classes. Will look great in your hallway!

  7. The minute I saw this on Flickr, I thought, that's what the dog ate! It's looking lovely, well worth the remake and will be popular with the students, me thinks..

  8. Well if I lived in the UK, I'd be signing up for the class! I love your banner. That dog of yours!! It's funny that s/he has a button fetish. Glad you worked out/improved some of the kinks in the process of making the second one, so it wasn't all for naught. I remembered the name of my sister's mother-in-law's town: Newcastle (I was waaaaay off!) have a great day and watch that dog of yours!

  9. Your welcome banner is fantastic! It brought a big smile to my face :)
    I can relate to your quality control - a few of the quilts and cushions I've made are now showing the exact same look as your first banner!


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