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August 30, 2011



OMG ... what a great idea with the blue tape!! Thanks for sharing!!


Great job Nicole! And might I add that I found the book "Foolproof Machine Quilting" by Mary Mashuta to be an excellent resource for machine quilting with your walking foot. Mary's book gave me confidence to start machine quilting my quilts doing things other then loop d'loops. I also recommend any of Patsy Thompson's DVD's. I love quilting my own quilts, and these gals have given me the visual helps that are making it possible ;-)

Denise Downey

I think you did a great job, too.
I love coming here because as a beginning quilter, I'm learning so much!
Keep the tips and techniques coming, and all your wonderful quilt pictures! :)


Looks great!



Thanks, Nicole! I am so encouraged when I find that even the experts, like you, have struggles with FMQ. I am going to use your method first on my own Schnibbles Bennington small quilt, then on Open Season. Maybe in a year or two I will be brave enough to try the loop d' loops!


Okay, so now I know why some of my friends have blue painters tape in their sewing rooms...never thought to ask. I actually have a bag pattern that I need to do this to the fabric before making the tote - I have been dreading drawing the lines on the I can do this easily - thanks, Nicole for sharing this great technique!

Your schnibble looks wonderful! On the chair and I am sure on the table later.

Have a great day - boy you must wake up really early! It is before 9 here my time and you posted awhile ago!


I have done cross hatching, and find it easier than free motion quilting. My shoulders suffer so much when I try machine quilting. Good for you for staying with it. They say practice, practice, practice --I say send the big stuff out and let my long armer practice. LoL Judy C in NC


Good job Nicole! I have finally gotten more comfortable with my free motion machine quilting skills over the last couple of years, but I still grid quilt a lot of quilts because many times those straight lines are just what the quilt needs.

Love that quilt and congrats on the finish!

Becky in KCMO

I love the look of cross-hatching. It is timeless, and, as with Baptist Fans, looks great on any traditional quilt. You might want to experiment with different threads and the looks they give. I love doing cross-hatch with Bottom Line (Superior thread) as it seems to sink into the quilt so that the crinkle of the fabric shows more than the stitches. Congratulations on your new skill!


Yay Nicole, fabulous job! Cross-hatching served me very well for some 20 odd years because it's easy, quick, adjustable and I rarely came across a quilt design that didn't look good cross-hatched. To me, it's a classic. I mean, why else did Coco Chanel have her signature purse quilted with it?! ;)

Turn it 45 degrees and you have a very modern-looking finish too.

But yes, I have grown sooo tired of being LIMITED to cross-hatching (I've referred to myself as a 1" grid whore for many years ... haha).

Best of luck on your journey. I'm cheering you on!


Cross-hatching is one of the oldest quilting designs in the world, so you are right up there with the originators, lol! I love cross-hatching for lots of reasons, even though it can be time consuming on a large project--it looks just right for your little quilt. Congrats on fording that quilt-it-yourself stream :)

Barbara Anne

Applause, applause!! Well done on your cross-hatch quilting design!!

Yep! We're back on the grid, with power restored about 4am today and the washing machine is working on the 2nd load. Cheers that we were without power for less than 72 hours from Hurricane Irene - but we did have a generator to help the fans and refrigerator. When Hurricane Isabel came thru in 2003, we had no generator and were without electricity for 9 days. No fun.


Paula Zumaris

Nicole, Thanks for mentioning the painter's tape. I will be doing some crosshatch soon and had not thought of using the painters tape. I even have some.


I love the look of straight line quilting. a small Irish Chain is a great top to practice quilting one, x hatch the patchwork and then you only have the small open spaces to free motion, instead of the whole top.

Kay Hobby

Nice quilting! I too have been working on my machine quilting skills and seem to be my own worst critic. Relax and enjoy the process. It will improve. You are off to a great start. :-)


Nicole . . . I love it !! . . .

thanks for the painters tape idea . . . I just finished making doll bed quilts for my grand-daughters and was trying to decide if I wanted to quilt them myself . . . this settles it for me . . . I am going to try it !!

can you tell me what setting you use for your stitch length ? . . . and do you always use 1" tape ?? . . . thanks . . .


You did a great job!

FYI -- I was a terrible free motion quilter when I started. I thought I'm never going to be able to do this, but I kept getting better after reading tips from various blogs and eventually it all started to click.

I found the tips Oh Fransson's site to be the best for me.

In addition to her tips I also lower the machine speed a couple of notches. But that's a personal preference.

And... I love to practice on doll quilts. I have to be doing a project to do my best work. Just practicing on pieces of sandwiched fabric doesn't cut it for me -- I'll give up too easily or mess up and figure - forget it then in trash it goes. LOL. But a doll quilt with something I can give to a little girl.. I'll take my time and really try.

Good luck... thanks for the tip on the tape. I'll have to try that one for sure.

Bari Jo

Yay! Great job!! I am so intimidated by free motion quilting and so afraid of ruining a top but really really want to learn to get good at it... I found her site, too, and got so excited when I saw her cross hatching - I thought the same thing you did!! I have painter's tape on my list so I can get started. Thanks for showing me how you did it! I love how it looks and can't wait to try it! Love reading your blog and congrats on your new grandbaby she is precious! And Ozzie is so cute, too! I am enjoying watching your Farmer's wife blocks come to life. I have just started paper piecing and am waiting on my Marti Michel template info to come in! Thanks for all the great inspiration! Bari

Julie in WA

I love the cross hatching; it looks wonderfully neat! Thanks for the link; September is my month to begin machine quilting in earnest. I have done only straight lines up to this point, and it is time to move forward!

Lisa D.

Your grid quilting looks great. What a good idea to use the painter's tape.

Wendy P

Your Bennington came out so cute!!! I am totally rethinking my charm pack stash plans.


I agree that using painter's tape is a great idea. My LQS owner suggested that to me about a year ago for some of my small (christmas gifts) projects and it sure did the trick! The Schnibbles Bennington for fall looks terrific.

Linda Bishop

Hi Nicole
What a lovely result. Although I can free motion quilt I still love simple cross hatching.Did you see the old quilt blocks I bought?
I think crosshatching is going to be just perfect for these. Lots of stopping and starting to get past the applique but I am sure it's the right thing to do. I used to teach machine quilting. I always encouraged learners to do a good part of their quilting with the walking foot as it builds confidence.
Sorry - bit long.
Taupo NZ


Hey, I like the way you used the tape! I use cross hatching on small baby quilts because I like the look. However, I've been marking mine with water washable markers or with a Hera marker. I like your method better! Easier to see. ;0


Just in time! I had some straight lines to sew on a pink & cream Lily & Will fabric diaper bag today. Painters tape did the trick!! Thanks for a great tip! Your Schnibble looks great all quilted! Congrats!

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