Category: free-motion quilting

More Ruler Work with Lisa Calle – Quilter’s Groove ProDiamond rulers

Today is day #2 of my week focused on free-motion quilting (FMQ), but I also want to share insights about a fun 30-day quilting challenge hosted by Annie’s Ruby Slipperz.

Sew30 Sew FUN  a challenge to sew just 30 minutes each day (6 days a week, 1 free day) for the whole month of May 2017.  Visit her blog to check out her post, with more details, as well as how you can enter to win a special prize.  Of course, I hope to inspire you to try to spend 30 minutes each day learning, or improving, your free-motion quilting skills. It could be a great way to master new motifs, or even quilting stencils or rulers too!

 Speaking of FMQ, I’ve been in love with a diamond motif  and diamond crosshatching that some of themany designs that can be stitched using the Quilter’s Gove ProDiamond Ruler, by very taented Lisa Calle.

I previously shared insights about Quilter’s Groove ProEcho Ruler.  While Lisa is a longarm quilter, I asked her if she thought if her ruers would work on a domestic machine.  She shared “You can use these rulers on a domestic machine that has a high shank. The smaller ones (ProEcho 3-7) are good for domestic machines, but if you have your machine in a cabinet then really all of them will work. I would suggest putting some Handi Grip on the bottom of the rulers and using Machingers. I’ll be posting some videos of using them on a domestic machine soon. Stay tuned”

While I’ve been in love with the designs that this ruler can create, as Lisa is a longarm quilter I wasn’t certain if they would work on domestic sewing machines.  Lisa has confirmed that they will work and I also met someone on Facebook who has used them on their domestic machine.  

While  I just ordered this Quilter’s Grove Pro Diamond (even) ruler set and I’m chomping at the bit, eager to use it and feel it will be very easy to use and quite versatile.  I’ll share more insights with you after I’ve had a chance to play with it.   Hopefully I’ll be able to share some of my work while participating in Annie’s Sew30 Sew FUN Challenge.  I sure hope you’ll join her fun challenge….and hopefully enjoy some free-motion quilting too!  Lastly, I want to encourage everyone to visit Lisa Calle’s blog, or Facebook page and wish her a very Happy Birthday.  To celebrate her birthday, she has a 15% off sale (appears at check out) on all her rulers.  Sale runs thru Sunday, May 7th.

You can find Lisa Calle at:

Cindy Needham – New Ultimate Border Collection

Today I’m kicking off a week of topics about free-motion quiting, starting with insights about a new stencil collection designed by Cindy Needham,  as well as a sale:

Cindy Needham is a Master Quilter, teacher, author, designer whom I highly recommend to anyone interested in learning, or improving their free-motion quilting skills.  I also strongly urge anyone interested in FMQ to check out her “Complete Collection” of e:books, as well as all of her Ultimate Stencil collections.

Cindy has just released a new Ultimate Border Collection and they are on sale thru May 5th ($10 savings).  And for those that may not have her Complete Ultimate Collection, this collection now includes the new Ultimate Border Collection, plus the original Ultimate Stencil Collection, the Ultimate Background Stencil Collection and the Ultimate Shape Collection.  Needless to say, the “Complete” collection is an amazing deal, with endless possibilities of designs.  And, it is also on sale thru May 5th.  Plus these stencil collections come with accompanying e:books appropriate for each stencil collection that will help show you how to use these stencils, as well as incorporate an amazing variety of designs for each stencil, with “your” projects, or to apply on project designs inspired by some of Cindy’s amazing work.

Today I want to share a few insights about the versatility of Cindy’s new Ultimate Border Stencil Collection:

It contains six different borders in three sizes each:

It also contains 12 different motifs in three sizes each:

Each border design comes with the “halfway”  lines already cut as well as the 45 degree line cut in the corner.

Each motif has the center point cut as a dot.  This allows you perfectly centered designs and easy repeats.  Each of the motifs is designed to be added as an embellishment to any of the six border designs or to be repeated as a border themselves!  These motifs can be used as designs in your quilt blocks too.

Cindy has written a 50+ page E-Book to accompany these stencils that includes many design inspirations on how to use each border design and motif and a full chapter on how to make borders fit.

The design possibilities with this set of stencils is limitless!  You are encouraged to combine motifs and stencils to make your own custom border designs.  Your borders will always be centered, your corners will always be “spot on” and the repeats will always be equal.

This 20 stencil set is on sale for one week only for $65.00. This will run $75.00 after the sale is over.   Cindy has a flat rate shipping for domestic orders for $5.00 and international for $12.00.  She’ll pick up the rest of the tab for postage

CLICK HERE to be taken to Cindy’s website to purchase!

Don’t forget, If you don’t own any of Cindy’s Ultimate Stencils and would like to purchase the complete package, Cindy is offering the Complete Collection of Stencils on sale for $165.  This will run for $175 after the sale.  It includes the Ultimate Stencils (4 pieces total); the Ultimate Backgrounds (20 pieces total); Ultimate Shape (4 pieces total) and the new Ultimate Borders (20 pieces total).  It also comes with instructional E-Books for each set totaling about 150 pages.

CLICK HERE to be taken to Cindy’s website to purchase!


You can find Cindy Needham at:


Here are links to previous posts where I’ve shared insights about Cindy Needham, as well as a few of her awesome free-motion quilting tutorials:

Freemotion quilting with Amanda Murphy – Feathers

Amanda Murphy is a very talented quilter, teacher, designer, author and fabrick designer for Bernatex.  She is also a Bernina Quilting and Longarm Spokesperson.  Today I want to heighten awareness of her Youtube video tutorial for free-motion quilting feathers, which also has a free PDF companion document that you can download at:

Amanda stitches beautiful feathers and I hope you find this video helpful and inspirational:

You can find Amanda Murphy at:

Star Cross Quilt-A-Long, a #freemotion QAL, with Dena Wilkins

Are you interested in learning/improving your free-motion quilting skills in 2017?  How about learning Ruler Work?  Check out the free quilt-a-long, hosted by Dena Wilkins (Living Water Quilter).


You can find Dena at:

Her email is:


QuiltCon East is coming soon and I hope you get a chance to attend.  Angela Walters will be the keynote speaker and there is a special exhibit of many of her quilts, as well as quilts by Tula Pink, Emily Cier, Jacquie Gering, Alexandra Ledgerwood, Cherri House, and more.  

There will be inspirational quilts on display, great vendors, and plenty of excellent classes at this fun event.

At QuiltCon West, this past February, I was thoroughly impressed with the quilts and vendors and I’m confident that attendees of QuiltCon East will be so too!

Here is a quilt that caught my attention for design and free-motion quilting:


#IAMONBOARD was designed and made by Allison Chambers, of San Antonio, Texas.



Artist Description for this quilt: “I have always loved the traditional quilt block.  I modernized it by blowing it up to an 18″ x 24” block.  The boat floats on half-square triangle waves against a large expanse of a sky.  The popularity of Saturday Night Live’s video short “I’m on a boat” featuring Andy Samberg and the resulting Instagram hashtag is the inspiration for the title of this quilt.  I used Chambrey to add texture to the water and Jessica created a design for the quilting that mimics clouds and wind for the sky and the churning waves and sea foam bubbles of the ocean.

Have you ever attended a Modern Quilt Show?  What do you think of Modern Quilting ?  Are you going to attend QuiltCon East?

Ruler Work with Lisa Calle

Are you wanting to learn/improve your free-motion quilting skills this year? Interested in Ruler Work?

Last year, I began a series of articles on Ruler Work to encourage everyone to explore free-motion quilting with rulers on domestic machines, as well as mid-arm and longarm machines.  This series is also intended to heighten awareness of teachers, tools, classes and essentially opportunities for you to learn free-motion quilting with rulers.

Today, I want to showcase Lisa Calle, an expert free-motion quilter, teacher, author, and a Bernina Ambassador.  As a teacher, she is willing to travel to teach at quilt shows, guilds and quilt shops.  She also teaches online at iQuilt.

Her book Divide and Design, was published by AQS in Fall 2016.

Lisa H.Calle is also a 1991 graduate of Philadelphia College of Textiles and Science with a BS in Textile Management and Marketing.

When it comes to Ruler Work, Lisa’s favorite rulers are the Quilter’s Groove Rulers which can be used on a longarm, mid arm or domestic machine that have a high shank.  While I’ve not yet had an opportunity to use any of these rulers, I’ve certainly been inspired with what Lisa has created using FMQ Ruler Work.
Check out her blog posts, as well as watch her video tutorials to learn more.

As this video shows this Quilter’s Groove ProEcho Ruler being used on a longarm, I asked Lisa if she thought it would work on a domestic machine.  She shared “You can use these rulers on a domestic machine that has a high shank. The smaller ones (ProEcho 3-7) are good for domestic machines but if you have your machine in a cabinet then really all of them will work. I would suggest putting some Handi Grip on the bottom of the rulers and using Machingers. I’ll be posting some videos of using them on a domestic machine soon. Stay tuned”.

You can find Lisa Calle at:

Ruler Work: Dena Wilkins of Living Water Quilter

Today I’m showcasing a talented quilter, Geraldine Wilkins, (aka Dena), who is also a free-motion quilting expert and a Westalee Design by Sew Steady instructor, for Ruler Work.  You may know Dena through her blog, Living Water Quilter.



Dena share’s her inspirational work on her blog and Facebook, as well as many tips and tutorials:

She has several Youtube video tutorials.  Here is one where she shares how to create circles using a Westalee Ruler:


And, her most recent video “Free-Motion Ruler Work with Paradox”, shows how to create a stunning design.

BTW – I have found these “Westalee Circles on Quilts” templates available from Patsy Thompson Designs.


For those that are interested in taking a class with Dena, she is located in Virginia.  She is happy to travel the East Coast, Houston Texas and Southern California and is most willing to travel to teach at any other location to teach at Quilt Guilds, Quilt Shops, Shows, etc..  You may want to let your Quilt Guild Event Coordinator, local Quilt Shop, or even Quilt Show Class Scheduler know that you’d like to take a class with Dena in your area.

You can find Dena at:

Her email is:

Here is a list of previous posts about RulerWork


#CreativeGoodness With Modern Quilting And Free-Motion Quilting

While at QuiltCon West 2016, this past February, this stunning quilt, by Jess Frost, of  Mount Stuart, Tasmania, Australia  caught my attention:




In addition to glitz, this quilt had inspirational free-motion quilting.



And a variety of quilting motifs.



Even beautiful swirls and pearls.



I hope you enjoy seeing Jess’s quilt as much as I did.



Great job Jess.  Total #CreativeGoodness.

You can find Jess at:


You can find the QuiltCon at:




Ruler Work with Patsy Thompson

There are a number of amazing quilters that have adopted Ruler Work on a domestic machine, some of which teach classes on Ruler Work, as well as share insights on their blog.   In keeping with the heart of my series of articles on Ruler Work, I do plan to continue to share insights on experts with Ruler Work on domestic machines, as well as tools, tips, learning opportunities and inspirational projects.  But today, I want to focus on a particular quilter that is a master free-motion quilter (and more) who has also incorporated Ruler Work, with her stunning FMQ. 

Patsy Thompson is an amazing quilter, teacher, designer, author and Expert Free-Motion Quilter.  She is also one, of a growing number of quilters, that have adopted Ruler Work, with general free-motion quilting.  Although, I think she is the only teacher, that I’m aware of, that has mastered using both regular FMQ and Ruler Work, on a domestic machine, and teaches how to do this to create beautiful FMQ on your projects.  

Patsy has recently shared insights about a new  clear Ruler Foot on the market by Accents and Designs.  Here is a brief video she created,  introducing the Clarity Foot, a new ruler foot for sit down. Since it is clear you can easily see through it to see your markings and your stitching as you proceed. No more obstruction by metal ruler feet. This foot fits nearly all domestic machines and will be a great addition to your quilting arsenal!

Now in contrast, here is an older video by Patsy Thompson that talks about the Westalee Ruler Foot, that is adaptable to a variety of high and low shank domestic sewing machines. although in this video she does focus on this foot using a Bernina 830.


Here is a link to a chart, by Accents and Designs, that can help you figure out if your machine is a high or low shank machine:

Lastly, I want to heighten awareness that Patsy Thompson also has

  • a DVD for Ruler Work on Domestic Machines.  I’ve not yet watched this video, but I have seen all of her videos for free-motion quilting and can highly recommend them.  Thus, I’m confident this new Ruler Work DVD is also an excellent value.


You can find Patsy Thompson at:

You can find Accents and Designs at:

Ruler Work On Domestic Machines

Before I begin, I want to clarify that there are a variety of rulers for free-motion quilting on longarm and mid-arm machines, as well as feet.  But the feet, as well as the rulers, used on longarm and mid-arm machines are not typically useful on a domestic machine.  The shank of the machine, where the foot resides is completely different.  And the neck of the machine is also different, much smaller on a domestic machine, thus prohibiting the use of many longarm rulers on a domestic machine.

While I am not an expert on Ruler Work, I do want to heighten awareness of how easy it is to use rulers on a domestic machine and how much fun it can be.  Thus, I’ve started a series of articles on this topic where I plan to showcase experts, rulers, feet, tips, tutorials and hopefully plenty of inspiration.  My goal you ask?  I simply want to encourage every quilter to try Ruler Work, on their domestic machines, regardless if you have ever done any free-motion quilting or not.  And I want to increase awareness of a variety of ways to learn/improve your FMQ skills by way of Ruler Work.

I’m confident rulers can help you stitch beautiful FMQ designs without having to mark your fabric.   I also believe you’ll find Ruler Work can also be faster and more accurate to traditional FMQ.  While some may be happy to only use Rulers, I also feel the hybrid of using Ruler Work with traditional FMQ can be amazing.  It will be up to you to pick your style.

Some quilters use rulers without a special foot.  For example, several years ago Teri Lucas shared a  Youtube video showing how to use rulers with common machine feet.

A true ruler foot is a 1/4″ foot that guides along the ruler, to allow the free-motion quilting to stitch 1/4″ from the guide (ruler).  The foot typically has a round base that allows the ruler to be rotated completely around the foot, consistently stitching 1/4″ away.  Non-sewing machine companies are the leaders in designing ruler feet, for various brands.  While you need to know if your machine is a high vs low shank machine before you purchase a generic ruler foot for your machine, I also recommend you check with your sewing machine dealer to learn if they have a specific ruler foot for your machine.  Bernina has recently released such a foot, but not all dealers have them in stock yet.


Westalee, based in Australia, has design of generic ruler feet for high or low shank machines and they also have a large selection of rulers.  In the US, one of their largest resellers is Sew Steady who sales a variety of ruler bundles.

Personally, I prefer using a Ruler Foot vs other feet, as I find it is simply smoother when sewing against a ruler and doesn’t want to sneak underneath the ruler.  Plus, I can stitch faster when using a true Ruler Foot, but that could be just me.


Here is a good intro to Ruler Work video tutorial by Angela Walters.  I also really like this video as Angela shares how to incorporate regular FMQ with ruler work.

I’ve received plenty of questions that I’m researching (e.g. WW status of availability of the new Bernina Ruler Foot for Domestic Machines, What other Brands have their own Ruler Foot, How to identify differences of rulers best for longarm vs domestic or midarm machines, etc.).

For those of you that have pursued Ruler Work on a sit down machine, I’m hoping you can share your favorite brand of rulers and/or favorite “go to” ruler.  And, of course, I hope you’ll share photos of any Ruler Work you have done (or any FMQ) on my Facebook page at:   as I’d love to see what you’ve created, as well as have your help to inspire others to give Ruler Work (and FMQ) a try.
Here is a list of previous posts about RulerWork

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