How to quilt the Glimmer quilt

Posted on Leave a comment

I finally got around to quilting the Glimmer quilt I made sometime last year. This one was pieced with Carolyn Friedlander fabrics and I kept the colors subdued to greys and white with just a POP of the lime green.

I had done pillow sized and table topper sized versions of Glimmer but this was the first large version I had done. I wanted to make sure I really went wild with custom quilting on this.

Originally I had planned to do this on my domestic machine with lots of free motion quilting, but I loaded it up on the longarm once I had figured out the best way to start quilting.

Here’s an overview of the quilting I did:

In the background I just did allover swirls. The print is pretty busy for being black and white, so anything fancier would not show. It does create a great uniform overall texture in the background.

Then in each print I did a different free motion design.

Figure eights or L’s in the outermost rings, then ribbon candy. The next section is the green so I did a nice half leaf feathering thing. You could also call it serpentine, but it’s similar to doing feathers, except pointy. Some people refer to this as fern feathers.

The next section formed a V shape so I decided to treat both as a unit and did a swirled hook design that turned a corner. I picked this because it fit and because I’m not so good at it and needed the practise.

The inside ring I did close back and forth lines, also known as switchbacks. It’s a great dense fill and helps flatten the area, because in the inner ring I did feathers! Of course I did. I treated the edge of the block as the spine of the feather and bumped my way out from the center. Just travel back down the seam or around the block to get to the next one.

On the longarm I started at the top with the background fill and as I went back and forth I did each section as needed, even if it was a different motif. I did the whole thing in white 60w thread. This is so thin it sinks into almost any color.

For total quilting time, I did this over 3 days and my rough calculations were about 4 or 5 hours. One of those days I did hardly anything on it.

If you were going to do this same quilting on a domestic, I would do the stitch in the ditch around the main motif following the major seams first. Then I would start in the middle and do all the feathers. I would then do the next rung with the switchbacks. After that, I would likely do the next bits in quarters, travelling as needed to finish off the SID around the pieces and to get to the next sections. When the whole center motif was done, then I would start the background fill around the edges of the center and work my way out to the edges, also in quadrants.

If you have any questions, let me know!