Novice or expert, quilting is always an exciting adventure. With so many techniques and styles to choose from, it can be tricky to master precision piecing, until now. Let your embroidery machine do the work for you! By using the software in the new Flurry of Snowflakes embroidery bundle, you can easily create quilt blocks and finish the design with outline quilting motifs. I’ll show you the process step-by-step on Stress Free Quilting with Machine Embroidery on Sewing With Nancy.

Introducing Flurry of Snowflakes! Don’t run for your winter coat and mittens; run for your embroidery machine! This new snowflake-themed package includes three blocks in four sizes and coordinating outline/quilting embroidery. I’m showcasing the outline designs as the machine quilting; however, you can add the beautiful soft scrolling outlines to any project.


  • Batik Fabrics in white, blue and pale purple
  • Batting
  • Fusible Mesh Cut-Away Stabilizer
  • Coordinating all-purpose thread, such as Madeira Aerofil
  • 50 Weight Quilting Thread
  • Mini iron
  • Sewer’s Fix-It Tape

Note from Nancy: The specific supplies list for this table runner is included in the software package. Sizes and amounts will vary depending on which size blocks you stitch.

Precision Piece Blocks


  • Determine the block size. Choose the block size according to the finished size of the project you’d like to create, and hoop size available for your embroidery machine. This collection works with 8″, 6″, 5″, or 4″ hoops.
  • Print a template of each Flurry of Snowflakes blocks using an embroidery software program such as Amazing Designs® Edit Express™.
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  • Select and prepare fabrics by applying Best Press to stabilize the fabrics.
  • Cut the fabrics as described for the sizes you’ve chosen. 
Note from Nancy: I am making my table runner using the 6″ block size for this project demonstration. My table runner will finish at 18″ x 54″.
Center Blocks:
  • Section 1: light blue fabric—cut three 4″ squares
  • Section 2: white fabric—cut three 2-1/4″ x 4″ rectangles
  • Section 3 and 5: white fabric—cut six 2-1/4″ x 5-1/2″ rectangles
  • Section 4, 6, 8 , and 9: dark blue fabric—cut six 3″ squares, subcut diagonally
  • Section 7: white fabric—cut three 2-1/4″ x 7″ rectangles
Diamond Blocks:
  • Section 1: lavender fabric—cut twelve 3″ squares
  • Section 2: light blue fabric—cut twelve 2″ x 3″ rectangles
  • Section 3 and 4: light blue fabric—cut twenty four 2″ x 4″ rectangles
  • Section 5: light blue fabric—cut twelve 2″ x 5″ rectangles
  • Section 6–9: dark blue fabric—cut two 4″ squares, subcut diagonally
Corner Blocks:
  • Section 1: dark blue fabric—cut twelve 3″ squares
  • Section 2 and 3: lavender fabric—cut twelve 4″ squares, subcut diagonally
  • Section 4 and 5: dark blue fabric—cut twelve 4″ squares, subcut diagonally
  • Section 6: light blue fabric—cut twelve 2″ x 9″ rectangles
  • Section 7: white fabric—cut six 5-1/2″ squares, subcut diagonally
Sashing Strips:
  • Dark blue fabric—cut two  2-1/2″ x 23″ rectangles

Build the Block

  • 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 thread 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. Use a thread dark enough that the lines are visible.
  • Notice the different sections of blocks and numbers within. These numbers indicate the piecing sequence of each block.

  • Place Section 1 fabric square over section one stitched on the stabilizer base, right side up. The fabric must cover the stitching lines and extend almost equally along all sides.
  • Fuse the fabric to the stabilizer with a mini iron.

  • Thread Color 2 will baste the square in place.

  • Trim away excess fabric past the basting line.

  • Align Section 2 fabric strip along the fabric edge, right sides together. Make certain that the fabric is extending equally beyond the outline on the stabilizer at opposite ends.
  • Thread Color 3 will create the seam.
  • Fold fabric Section 2 over stabilizer.
  • Press from the folded edge, working to the outer edge to eliminate wrinkles.
  • Thread Color 4 will baste pressed section to stabilizer.

  • Trim away excess fabric past basting line.

  • Continue in numerical order until all pieces are added.
  • There is no need to trim away any excess fabric along the previous stitched basting lines around the perimeter of the block.

  • Before stitching Color 19, tape the seam edges with Sewer’s Fix-It Tape.
  • Thread Color 19 will baste the entire block and provides a trimming guideline.
  • Remove tape to reuse on additional blocks.
  • Align ruler 1/8″ past the outer stitched line.
  • Trim with a rotary cutter.

Stitch the Table Runner

  • All seam allowances are 1/4″ unless otherwise noted.
  • Set up sewing/embroidery machine with a 1/4″ piecing foot or standard food.
  • Arrange the blocks in three rows of nine blocks as shown below.

  • Match right sides together and begin to join pairs of blocks.

  • Create three single blocks consisting of nine patches, each.
  • Add sashing strips to each block, matching right sides.

Quilt the Table Runner

  • Layer the table runner by creating a quilt sandwich. This is a delicious term to describe the layers:
  1. Table runner backing—wrong side up
  2. Quilt batting
  3. Pieced table runner—right side up
  • Use curved pins to baste the three layers together.
  • Place a Walking Foot on your sewing/embroidery machine.
  • Switch to quilting thread in a coordinating color.
  • Start with the middle block, stitching in the ditch to secure the three layers.
  • Choose one of the snowflake outline designs to quilt. Print using the Amazing Designs® Edit Express software.
  • Position a printed outline design template; tape it to the table runner at the desired location, aligning centers with center marks on the hoop.

  • Use the positioning sticker to align the embroidery.
  • Remove the paper template.
  • Stitch.

  • Repeat these quilting steps as often as you like on the table runner.
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Finish the Table Runner

For more information on creating wonderful quilted projects pieced precisely with an embroidery machine, 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

Bye for now,

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