Monday, 5 August 2013

Maze Quilting {A Tutorial}

Back in April when I made my son's Mario quilt, I offered to put together a tutorial for the maze quilting I did in the background, and quite a few of you were interested. So I've *ahem* finally put one together :o)



This free motion quilting motif is really easy to do (I guess it's a little like square stippling) and gives a really great texture. I think it suits geometric quilts really well - and you can adapt the scale to suit a whole range of areas in your quilt. I tried really hard to take photos of actual quilting step by step, but the light on my sewing machine made it really difficult to photograph well, so I think it's easier to show you with pen and paper :o)


 To begin, simply quilt a rectangular shape - these lines are about 1/2" apart. I started on the edge of my quilting space when I quilted Mario, but you could start anywhere.


Next, echo up the side you've just quilted a short distance, and then quilt another rectangle off to the side.


Continue echoing the first rectangle shape part of the way over the top, before quilting out horizontally and then quilting another rectangle. The important thing here is to make the horizontal line long enough that you'll be able to echo inside it without making your quilting lines too close together. Judging this distance gets easier with practice - but if you're lines are a bit close together it will get lost in the overall design anyway.


From here, I simply echo quilted down around the whole left hand of the design, and then back up and across the top of the design. As you can see, it's beginning to look quite complex, but really it is very simple to do.


Next, I quilted down the right hand side, adding a vertical rectangle along the way.

Again, more echoing around the edge of the design, adding in a couple of extra rectangles along the way.


And then echoing back across the top of the design.


To continue to build on it, I would simply echo quilt around the design, adding more rectangles along the way, and then echoing them.

The quilting on my Mario quilt ended up looking like this:


I hope this made sense - any questions please don't hesitate to ask. If you use this tutorial I would love to see the results!

xx Jess

19 comments:

Adrianne said...

Nice tutorial Jess - will definitely give this one a try someday! Thanks for taking the time to put it together.

Carla said...

This is such fabulous quilting. I love the texture it gives

CJ said...

That's really effective, thank you for the tutorial, you make it seem fairly simple to do.

Erica said...

This is so pretty! I don't know if I could fmq lines that straight, yours looks great!

Pip said...

Great texture with this type of quilting, I shall definitely try this soon, I did something similar on a quilt but used my walking foot, doing it FMQ would save all the pivoting and turning.

Charlotte said...

that's so cool! Did you do it with a free-motion foot? Please say yes - the alternative quilt-wrestling is making my arms hurt just to think about!

Darlington Gal said...

It seems so easy, but I'm sure when I start trying to do it on my sewing machine, it will be complicated! UGH! I'm a horrid quilter, but I can sew some lovely squares according to the family!

Susan Owenby said...

Very nice! It looks great. I tried something similar on a tree skirt before I had heard of free motion quilting, this is much smarter. :)

JanuaryT said...

That's a great tutorial! I love this type of quilting it really stands out :)

moira said...

you are my inspiration, miss jess

Katy Cameron said...

Oooh, oooh, is there a pot of gold at the end? Maybe a horcrux? :oD

Benta AtSLIKstitches said...

Oh you make it look so easy!!

Susana said...

Infinitas gracias por darle luz a nuestras mentes.1000 cariƱos.

Yvonne Campbell said...

This tutorial is very helpful. I love the design. I'm excited to try it on my next quilt which I am about to put on the quilting frame today. Distance is the key to quilting.

Vicki said...

Great tut! Thanks.

Newbie Jen said...

I think my next manly quilt will need this motif. Thanks for the tutorial.

Janine said...

This is a great motif - really effective :)

Lucy @ Charm About You said...

brilliant! I will have to try it!

Nicky said...

Excellent ! It seems so confusing but you may it look possible!