If you love the look of perfectly pieced blocks and precision machine quilting, put your embroidery machine to work for both tasks! We call it  Stress-Free Quilting. 
No quilting experience required! First, create accurate and consistent quilt blocks with the piecing-in-the-hoop technique. Usually we think of embroideries as decorative designs, but with Stress-Free Quilting, the embroidery designs stitch out precision seams for piecing, all in the hoop. Then learn how to layer your quilting project and add quilting designs that look like free-motion designs. Both piecing and free-motion quilt designs in several sizes are included in the new embroidery package, Stress-Free Quilting and Machine Embroidery, the Lover’s Knot Collection






Collection includes five designs in four sizes each:

  • 20 designs: 5 (4″ x 4″), 5 (5″x 5″), 5 (6″ x 6″), 5 (8″ x 8″)












Supplies

Make Blocks

Alternating the Snowball Block and the Square-in-a-Square block creates this Love Knot Quilt. Let’s make the blocks one style at a time.
  • Gather the required fabrics as listed in the Love Knot Quilt instructions.
  • Sort the 5″ charm pack and the 2-1/2″ pre-cut strips into light, medium, and dark values.

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  • Cut each darker value 5″ charm square in half diagonally.





  • Choose four assorted triangles per block.





  • Layer four medium value squares.
  • Cut the medium value 5″ charms diagonally, twice.





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Square-in-a-Square Block:
  • Gather the required fabrics for one block:
- One light charm square
- Four assorted medium value quarter triangles
- Four assorted light value 2-1/2″ precut strips
- Four assorted dark value 2-1/2″ precut strips





  • Hoop a Fusible Mesh Cut-Away Stabilizer, fusible side up.
  • Set up the sewing machine with the embroidery unit and appropriate foot.
  • Import and select the embroidery design for the block.
  • Select all-purpose poly or poly/cotton thread; wind the bobbin with the same thread as used in the needle. A slightly contrasting color works best. (Now this is different! Rayon thread is usually used for embroidery but we’re piecing quilt blocks!)
  • Stitch the first thread color directly on the stabilizer.






  • Start with the center square, section one. Place the 5″ charm over that section making sure the fabric covers the stitching lines.
  • Fuse the fabric strip to the stabilizer with a mini iron.






  • Stitch the thread Color 2, which bastes down fabric #1.






  • Using a sharp scissors, trim excess fabric; 1/8″–1/4″ past the stitched line.






  • Working with section two and matching right sides, lay one end of a 2-1/2″ strip on top of the center square. Fabric should extend beyond the square, slightly.




  • Embroider thread Color 3 to stitch the section to the block.





  • Fold the second fabric strip over the stabilizer.
  • Start pressing from the folded edge, working to the opposite corner to eliminate wrinkles. “Prepressing” with your fingertips is ideal—you can feel any wrinkles.
  • Press and fuse the fabric strip to the stabilizer.





  • Embroider thread Color 4 to baste the pressed section to stabilizer.





  • Trim away excess fabric along the previously stitched basting line.






  • Repeat these steps to complete the remaining sections.





  • Before stitching the last thread color, tape the seam edges with Sewer’s Fix-It Tape. This prevents the embroidery foot from catching on the fabric folds as you embroider the outer block perimeter.
  • Place the tape 1/8″–1/4″ away from the stitched basting lines.





  • Stitch the final thread color.





  • Trim block approximately 1/4″ outside stitching lines.





  • Create 28 of the Square-in-a-Square blocks.
Snowball Block:
  • Gather the required fabrics as listed in the Love Knot Quilt instructions.
  • Choose four assorted triangles per block.
  • Gather the required fabrics for one block:
- One light charm square
- Four assorted medium or dark value quarter triangles
  • Hoop a Fusible Mesh Cut-Away Stabilizer, fusible side up.
  • Set up the sewing machine with the embroidery unit and appropriate foot.
  • Import and select the embroidery design for the block.
  • Select all-purpose poly or poly/cotton thread; wind the bobbin with the same thread as used in the needle. A slightly contrasting color works best. (Now this is different! Rayon thread is usually used for embroidery but we’re piecing quilt blocks!)
  • Stitch the first thread color directly on the stabilizer.






  • Start with the center square, section one. Place the light fabric over that section making sure the fabric covers the stitching lines.
  • Fuse the fabric strip to the stabilizer with a mini iron.






  • Stitch the thread Color 2, which bastes down fabric #1.





  • Using a sharp scissors, trim excess fabric; 1/8″–1/4″ past the stitched line.





  • Working with section two and matching right sides, lay one end of a 2-1/2″ strip on top of the center square. Fabric should extend beyond the square, slightly.





  • Embroider thread Color 3 to stitch the section to the block.





  • Fold the second fabric strip over the stabilizer.
  • Start pressing from the folded edge, working to the opposite corner to eliminate wrinkles. “Prepressing” with your fingertips is ideal—you can feel any wrinkles.
  • Press and fuse the fabric strip to the stabilizer.





  • Embroider thread Color 4 to baste the pressed section to stabilizer.





  • Trim away excess fabric along the previously stitched basting line.






  • Repeat these steps to complete the remaining sections.
  • Before stitching the last thread color, tape the seam edges with Sewer’s Fix-It Tape. This prevents the embroidery foot from catching on the fabric folds as your embroider the outer block perimeter.
  • Place the tape 1/8″–1/4″ away from the stitched basting lines.





  • Stitch the final thread color.
  • Trim the fabric ends approximately 1/4″ from the perimeter stitching lines.





  • Create 28 of the Snowball blocks.

Arrange the Quilt Top

  • If necessary, trim all blocks to uniform size.

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  • The quilt uses 56 total blocks; a 7″ x 8″ grid.
  • Join pairs of blocks—one of each, using a 1/4″ seam allowance. Press.
  • Join eight blocks to create a column. Make seven columns. Press.
  • Join columns, making sure the blocks alternate when joined. Press.

Machine Embroider to Quilt

  • Choose a quilting embroidery design. The Love Knot Quilt Collection includes the three different designs to mix and match with this quilt. Each design is specially sized for each size block.
  • Print a template using an embroidery software program such as Amazing Designs® Edit Express(included on the CD Love Knot Quilt Collection).
Note from Nancy: Print embroidery templates on Translucent Foundation Paper for better visibility and alignment of the designs on your quilt.
  • Trim excess paper.
  • Position the template over the quilt and tape in the desired location.





  • Align the quilting embroidery design, hoop quilt, and quilt. Details covering hooping options and specific steps can be found in the complete directions.
  • Position a placement sticker to center the design.
  • Remove the paper template after the hoop and quilt are aligned.
  • Change thread and bobbin to 50 weight machine quilting thread, if desired.
  • Embroider.





  • Repeat these steps for each desired embroidered quilting motif.
  • Add embroidered quilting to all desired areas of the quilt repeating the previous steps.

Finish the Quilt

  • Cut remaining 2-1/2″ strip ends at a 45° angle.
  • Join strips end-to-end with a 1/4″ seam allowance.
  • Press seam allowances open.










Ta-Dah—Computer-guided accuracy with this in-the-hoop quilting project.





Watch Stress Free Quilting with Machine Embroidery Part Two on Sewing With Nancy online.

To watch Sewing With Nancy on your iPad, iPod Touch, or iPhone, download the app.


Stress Free Quilting with Machine Embroidery by Nancy Zieman



Nancy Zieman's Giveaway Winner

There are two random winners of a copy of M7252, from The McCall Pattern Company.


M7252 Pullover Pattern by Nancy Zieman



The winner from the blog on October 6 is Karen Payton. She said: I noticed a lot of knit fabric at my local fabric store and wondered what I could make. This would be perfect. Looks so quick and easy.

The winner from the blog on October 13 is Melanie. She said: I have a lovely Autumn “brown” knit piece and a “marine” blue fleece…decisions, decisions, which one should I create first?!!!

 

Bye for now,

Nancy Zieman The Blog

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