> ~ Insights by SewCalGal ~

Friday, August 31, 2012

2012 FMQ Recap - August

First, I want to recognize and formally thank Wendy Sheppard, our August FMQ Expert for her wonderful tutorial.

Wendy shared many FMQ insights with us and provided a fun tutorial to create beautiful Jester Hats.  She also recently posted on her blog, a "Thread Talk" post that also shared insights that will help participants with the Jesters Hat design, as well as any filler design.

Everyone had fun learning and/or improving their FMQ skills using Wendy's tutorial.

At the point of writing this post, there are ~130+ quilters that have completed this tutorial and entered to win a monthly prize.  (note: there are over 2,000 participants that have registered to complete this challenge, but only a small percentage enter the monthly challenges).  And many enjoy the ability to "master" these tutorials at their leisure vs rushing  to complete an exercise in the month it was released.

 It is fun to look at all of they entries, as each of them are truly beautiful.  SewCalGal hopes everyone will be able to view all of the entries too!  There are also more photos, from those that have shared on our optional Facebook Group and/or the Flickr group.

Some have created beautiful projects already, from insights learned in this tutorial.

Quilters of all levels, from all over the world, are participating in this challenge.  While some have experience doing FMQ, many are quite new.  But, we all enjoyed Wendy's tutorial very much!  And many participants are already applying Wendy's insights, and designs shared in this tutorial to their projects.

On behalf of all the participants, SewCalGal and all of the participants want to extend a special thank you to Wendy for providing us such a wonderful tutorial and inspiring us to learn and improve our free-motion quilting skills. 


The objective of the 2012 Free Motion Quilting Challenge is to encourage quilters to learn and improve their FMQ skills, as well as gain more awareness to various FMQ Experts, opportunities to learn, tools that are helpful for those doing FMQ, all on a home sewing machine. While the focus is on learning, and SewCalGal does not want the focus to become all about winning prizes, but I'm also delighted that many generous sponsors have donated wonderful Grand Prizes and Monthly prizes, that will be awarded to participants randomly. It doesn't matter how good you are at FMQ, what matters is you take time to learn and improve.

Participants that do complete the monthly tutorial, in the month that it was released, and choose to enter per the rules on the original tutorial post, will be eligible to win a monthly prize.  For the June tutorial, there are three prizes and the winners will be announced ~ mid-July.

I do want to recognize and thank our sponsors for this challenge:

SewCalGal is proud to recognize our
for this challenge.

Sponsor(s) Prize(s)
The Fat Quarter Shop
Six prizes for Grand Prize Winners:
1 - $250 GC
1 - $150 GC
1 - $100 GC
3 - $50 GCs
logo One lucky winner will receive a $200 gift certificate to The Stencil Company where they can pick out their favorite continuous line stencil designs that are perfect for quilting
Dream World
One lucky winner will receive a Pieceful Holiday Quilting Package, which includes:
a Steady portable tables, a Travel/Storage Bag, Sew Straight Guide, Spinner Tray and Polish Kit
Pieceful Quilting Holiday Package w/ Drawer Tray
estimated value: $149.99
The Electric Quilt Company One lucky winner will receive a copy of EQ7

Retail price: $189.95
June Tailor A bundle of June Tailor products, perfect for free motion quilting, with an estimated value over $100
A bundle of books, perfect for those interested in free motion quilting, with an estimated value over $100

SewCalGal is proud to recognize our
for this challenge.


sampler pack of 5 threads (12) which will be used in the monthly "bundle" prizes, every month.

Silk Stars Thread kit, with 12 spools of 40 wt threads, that was awarded to a winner in the January Challenge:

Aurifil Silk Stars Thread Collection-

note:  This prize was awarded during the January challenge.


SewSlip has donated 12 SewSlips, to be awarded to the winner of each monthly "bundle".
Revolving Sewslip images
Sewline: Trio Three Color Fabric Marking Pencils with an extra refill package to be given to winners of monthly prize bundles.
Sewline Products
Quilters TouchQuilters Touch has donated 12 bundles, each with a value of $27.95, which will be given to the winners of the monthly "prize bundles":
Machinge 1 (Medium)

  • Sew Precise Sew Fast Machine Binding DVD (retail $19.95),

note:  As machingers are sized for the winner, they will be shipped directly to the respective winners of the monthly prize bundles, from Quilters Touch.  The other part of the monthly prize bundle will be shipped to the monthly prize bundle winners from SewCalGal.
Electric Quilt winners' choice of Quiltmaker Quilting Designs software
from Volume 1-8.  This prize will be awarded during one of the monthly challenges, in a month where there will be two winners.

The monthly Prize Bundle for this Challenge includes:
  • a sampler pack of 5 Aurifil threads, donated by Aurifil.
  • a SewSlip, donated by SewSlip
Revolving Sewslip images

Quilters Touch has donated a pair of  Machingers quilting gloves value $8 each
Machinge 1 (Medium)

And, Quilters Touch donated a Sew Precise Sew Fast Machine Binding DVD (retail $19.95),


Sewline has donated a Trio Three Color Fabric Marking Pencils, with an extra refill package.
Sewline Products

There is still time to enter to win a prize, simply visit the June tutorial for more information. But all entries for this monthly challenge need to be submitted in June, so this is the last day you can enter to win one of three prizes to be randomly awarded to winners of the Juney Challenge.  To clarify, this is not a judged challenge.  Just simply complete the tutorial and follow the instructions to enter, that are posted on the respective tutorial.  

The main page for this challenge, which has a tab under the header of my blog labeled "Free-Motion Quilting Challenge", will be updated mid-July, to announce the winner of the June Challenge. 

Don't forget to visit Wendy's blog (Ivory Spring).  She shares many inspirational quilts, tips and fun insights and I certainly enjoy being a follower.


Lastly, The September tutorial will be released tomorrow, September lst. An email announcement, with additional information, will also be sent to those that signed up for optional emails for this event. If you didn't sign up for such emails and are interested, click here to sign up. 

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Quilter said...

Thank you Wendy for challenging us to expand our abilities.

sherry said...

thx to wendy for creating this wonderful tutorial...altho it was a challenge....as Eleanor Roosevelt said "You must do the thing you think you cannot do". thank you to sewcalgal for helping us challenge ourselves many times each month...a big round of applause

sherry said...
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Raewyn said...

Thank you from me, too, to both of you for this month's challenge. It was a challenge but I enjoyed it :-)

Martha said...

Thank you, Wendy. I can actually say that I used this design and completed a small quilt. I'll use it again.

teachpany said...

Wendy, thanks again for participating in this, and giving us a great design. I love your quilts and designs. They are all so stunning. SewCal Gal, thanks too, for all you do to make this challenge a great experince.

Bente-I like to QuiltBlog said...
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jan said...

Hi Wendy, I have to admit when I first saw these Jester Hats I thought..ohoh...here comes trouble...but when I got round to having a go, which was last night, bit busy up till then making a surprise quilt for someone...I found them really fun to do and tonight I have done yet more of them to keep myself in the swing so to speak, many many thanks for a reall good fun motif which I am sure is going to find it's way on many quilts. Your help and time is much appreciated.
Jan McE

Bente-I like to QuiltBlog said...

Thanks to Wendy and SewCalGal for this challenger. I really did my very best, but this pattern dosen´t flow for me. Still funny to try, and it really looks great.

Dana Gaffney said...

Thanks Wendy, this one really was a challenge. I'll be practicing and I think once I've mastered it my skills will have improved quite a bit and that's what we're here for.
As usual, thank so much to SewCalGal for all you do, I know this takes a lot of your time, but I really appreciate your efforts and my chance to learn.

CBH said...
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Anonymous said...

This tutorial was a great one that really stretched my skills, as it was more difficult than it first appeared. Thank you for both the tutorial, and the extra advice in your blog post that directly addressed my questions. I really appreciate it.

Connie said...

Thank you Wendy for a wonderful and challenging tutorial and I also love your great blog!

Can't Stop Stitchin said...

thank you Wendy, it was a great challenge! Look forward to including this pattern in a future quilt!