Alright then, here it is:
My first actual project with stippling/free motion quilting. It is so far from perfect!!!! Here's an up close so you can see the herky jerkyness:
I forgot to take a pic of the magazine that I got the pattern from so you could see the inspiration. I changed the faces on the bunnies to make it more "me". So, I know that I mentioned that my tension was off. I don't know if you can tell from the photos but the topstitching was very much looser than the bottom. I have to say though that I've learned a lot from this project!
1. Always start in the middle. I've done that with the other projects I've quilted and I don't know why I felt like this one should be any different, but I started on the edge and worked over - not a good idea! The bunnies are very poufy now and have excess fabric in spots so there are puckers.
2. Yes, good idea to always use cotton machine quilting thread. I had read that on numerous tutorials and I have to say I wholeheartedly agree.
3. When stitching gets wonky try a new needle.
4. Dish gloves do not suffice for grabbines. I don't know how else to describe that? On yet another tutorial it was mentioned that someone wears dish gloves (you know like the yellow rubber ones? only mine are pink) to keep a good grip on the quilt sandwich to maneuver around. Nuh-uh. nope. But, I did buy some gloves at Joann's, the Fons and Porter ones and those seemed to be a little better. Grippier.
5. Keep track of excess fabric! I wasn't paying attention and quilted an edge into the middle of the back side! Ugh. Good thing it was just a little bit to take the stitches out, not a ton. I have to say that the stitching is kind of mesmerizing once you get going so it's easy to stop paying attention - for me.
6. Don't go as fast as possible. Another tip from a tutorial that I did not particularly find helpful. My stitching got super duper close together when I tried that, and seemed like I was out of control.
7. Plan ahead how stitching should go.
8. Oh man keep some full bobbins close at hand!!! Dude, this little thing took 3.5 bobbins!
9. Don't get so nervous. The quilting part for me is the most nerve-wracking and my stomach is in knots and yes arm pits a little sweaty. Gross. I know. Try to remember that a hobby is supposed to be fun and enjoy all aspects.
10. DON'T start dinner and then say "I'll just work on a little teensy bit" which will result in burnt dinner! I mean, really who can burn pasta? Me, that's who!
Okay, so I could go on with all the mistakes made and what to do differently next time! But, I will say that all in all it was a success! I think it turned out cute, and really some project has to be the first one with all the mistakes, right?