Free-motion Quilting blog hop!

When I heard that my good friend Jenny Lyon was writing a book I knew it was going to be one that I would want to recommend to anyone wanting to improve their machine quilting!

And I was right 🙂

I am delighted to be today’s stop on Jenny’s blog hop.

Here’s the book…Yes, you can take your machine quilting from ordinary to extraordinary… but guess what it takes practice, or plactice as Jenny calls it, because all practice is play time for her!

Jenny’s book includes lots of information that will help you get good results. There are sections on set up, choosing your batting, fabric, needles and thread. Then she covers basting, marking and tension issues and even gives some tips on controlling the bulk of a big quilt.

Once you’ve got all that sorted it’s time to stitch!! There is a 21 day plan to follow, starting with learning stitch motifs and going all the way through to small projects.

One of my favorite play things to do is to quilt from the back, following the design of a large scale print. Jenny has a project doing just that!

Life has been a little busy in my house so I just layered up a 14″ square of one of my Kaffe Fasset fabrics from my stash.

Now might be a good time to show you one of the things I brought back from Quilt Market. I have always said that I will only pin baste… well I might be changing my mind, at least on small projects. I used Quilters Select Free Fuse to baste my squares. It’s a powder that you use very sparingly between the layers, with a warm iron for a semi permanent fuse. (follow the link for proper instructions!)No smell, zero mess!

Once basted I stitched from the cabbage leaf side, outlining the leaves and some of the veins. I did make sure my tension was good before I had got very far because it’s the wrong side that we are interested in…

Ta-da!Too much fun and great plactice for getting into the rhythm of an even stitch length and smooth curves!

There are five projects in the book to work on, all designed to shape your skills, and then a gallery of Jenny’s wonderful quilts for inspiration. It’s a super book to add to your quilting library, designed for experienced beginners and beyond.

And you can win one!

Leave me a comment on THIS post and you will automatically be entered to win a free, signed copy of Jenny’s book. For your comment, tell me what your favorite method of basting is and why. It will be interesting to see the answers.

Then you can visit all the other people on the hop and leave comments on their posts…

A few notes about the hop:
– You can enter on each day’s special post but can only win once.
– Each blogger will leave the comments open for 8 days and then will choose a winner using a random method.
– Jenny will send winners a signed copy of her book.
– If you find a blog along the way that you find interesting, why not sign up to receive notices of future posts? (you can use the follow me on bloglovin button up near the top of my page)
– International winners will receive a digital copy.

The more the merrier-feel free to pass my post on to others so that we can all play along.

Here’s the list of everyone taking part.

Dec 1     Jenny K. Lyon

Dec 2     Lisa Chin

Dec 3     Catherine Redford – That’s me!!

Dec 4     Lyric Kinard

Dec 5     Heidi Proffetty

Dec 6     Debby Ritenbaugh Brown

Dec 7     Libby Williamson

Dec 8     Barbara Black

Dec 9     Cindy Grisdela

Dec 10   Teri Lucas

Remember, if you want to improve your free motion quilting, you will need to spend time at your sewing machine but Jenny’s book will certainly help you find more joy along the way!

If by some chance you are not the winner at the end of the hop then you will still just about have time to buy one for yourself wherever you usually buy your quilting books and get it in time for the holidays 🙂

Happy Stitching!


  1. lynn bourgeois said:

    Wow, thanks for sharing this with us. I struggle with FMQ,and would love to win this book.

    December 3, 2018
  2. Chris Deering said:

    sounds like a great book! Thanks for sharing.

    December 3, 2018
  3. Joanne Miller said:

    I am teaching myself to quilt and have either pin basted it or used my home made basting spray in the past. I’m going to go look up the powder.

    December 3, 2018
  4. Evette Barry said:

    Hi Catherine! Thanks for sharing another expert way to fmq! My fav is Spray Baste. I find I don’t have the patience for pins.

    December 3, 2018
  5. Chris Dishman said:

    Thanks for sharing all your good ideas: the book, the new powder, and the blog links. Enjoyed meeting you on cruise out of Gal eston 4 years ago. Been following your adventures since then. Plactice on!

    December 3, 2018
  6. Jo Newton said:

    I am practicing free motion quilting
    Jo N.

    December 3, 2018
  7. Missy Arey said:

    I’m loving reading your blogs – especially after taking a class with you. It makes it all the more personable. This looks like a great book to improve my FMQ – which needs lots of improvement!!!

    December 3, 2018
  8. Penni Simily said:

    I love this idea I have often thought I really liked the backing.

    December 3, 2018
  9. marginmirror said:

    Quilting from the back-side? Intriguing! I thought it would be intimidating till I realized you put a print on the back and a solid on the front. Hmmmm….I can follow lines! RE: Basting: I use 505 — but with a mask (we have up to 6 months of winter here so outdoors isn’t always an option!) or outdoors in the spring/summer. As an alternative, for a bit more even ‘coverage’, I use MistyFuse or Stitch Witchery — no bulk and no smell, and you can use up the scraps on the smallest of projects!

    December 3, 2018
  10. Peggy said:

    What a great sample! I WILL have to try that out!
    I went from thread basting to pin basting and have been doing that for at least 5 years. I may have to try the new powder. Basting is my least favorite part of the quilting process. Anything that will help is a plus in my book!

    December 3, 2018
  11. gerkovich said:

    I like to pin baste, i do not have a lot of room so I am worried about the over spray on my floor from the spray baste. Would love the book.

    December 3, 2018
  12. Pam Gerkovich said:

    Not sure if my post went through. I will try again. I pin baste because I am worried about the over spray on my floors. Would love the book.

    December 3, 2018
  13. Diane Morrow said:

    I was so happy to find your blog from Quilt Skipper’s Blog Hop. I am taking your class at Road to CA. I am so looking forward to it. If I am machine quilting I pin my quilts. I do not like the spray baste because of the toxic fumes. After reading about the Fusing product you mentioned, I just might try it. I love your Kaffe fabric quilted from the back. When I hand quilt I thread baste my quilts. Looking forward to Road” I’m so glad I found you rblog.

    December 3, 2018
  14. Diane Morrow said:

    I am so glad I found your blog. I am taking a class from you at Road to Ca in January. I do not like the spray basting products because of the toxic odor and the difficulty of removing overspray. The powdered fusing product sound like it is worth trying. My normal way to baste is with pins. I don’t find it hard. I love your quilting from the back on the Kaffe fabric. I have done this before but forgotten how much fun it is and how nice it looks. I will be trying it again. I think Jenny’s book will be a wonderful addition to any quilter’s library. I sure want it in mine.

    December 3, 2018
  15. Linda Dugovic said:

    I liked spray basting because it is easier than pin basting. However, my husband only wants me to spray baste outside, not workable in winter in Chicago. I think I will try the Free Fuse soon.

    December 3, 2018
  16. Debbie Schortzmann said:

    This looks like a great book to help me with FMQ and how to make it easier.

    December 3, 2018
  17. Shirley Beckmeyer said:

    I love this post. I am going to try the quilt from the back!

    December 3, 2018
  18. Wow Catherine, your stitch from the back is amazing. I have lots of large scale prints I might try using that technique. As soon as my FMQ stitching is more even. Thank for for sharing the fusavle dust with us. Robin

    December 3, 2018
  19. Shelley F said:

    I started out spray basting. Now I baste with safety pins.

    December 3, 2018
  20. Doreen Thompson said:

    I like to baste with 505 spray and fix on small projects, but I will thread baste on large quilts!

    December 3, 2018
  21. quilterpt said:

    I actually use a quilt-tak. It’s shoots the little plastic things they use to attach price tags to clothing, only shorter. I haven’t had trouble with it leaving holes and can baste a full size quilt in a very short amount of time. I use spray baste for small art quilts and the old fashioned pin technique for medium size quilts. Your quilting is just gorgeous using the fabric as a guide. Thanks for sharing!

    December 3, 2018
  22. Julie said:

    I have an 8’ x 4’ raised cutting table in my sewing room. When I am ready to baste a quilt, I clear off the table, tape my backing down onto the table, add the batting, then the quilt top. Next I use a large needle, thread and start basting the layers together. So far I have not had a wrinkle or fold in the back of my quilts.

    December 3, 2018
  23. Lorraine said:

    Great post. I’m anxious to get Jenny’s book. And thanks for the info on Free Fuse – I was curious about that product.

    December 3, 2018
  24. Linda Feutz said:

    OH, I am so excited to try some of these interesting ideas, as it is truly fun to do. I just need more practice, and the book will REALLY help me with that ! I like Aurafil thread. Can’t wait to get seing……….

    December 3, 2018
  25. wannajava said:

    So far I just pin baste. I am learning free motion quilting and need all the information I can get. Thanks for giveaway.

    December 3, 2018
  26. Sherry Gendel said:

    Sounds like a book that can help me get past my fears of free motion quilting! I agree I need to plactice more! 🙂 I have only pin basted but sometimes think I’d like to try another method so the pins aren’t in the way!

    December 3, 2018
  27. Sandy said:

    I’ve tried several different basting techniques, but I keep coming back to “old reliable” safety pins. Spray basting is difficult for me, because I don’t have a table outside, and thread basting takes me too long.

    December 3, 2018
  28. Mj Hill said:

    I usually spray baste outside and still add some pins. On larger quilts, I then baste with water soluble thread and remove the pins before completing the more intricate machine quilting. On very special quilts where I leave no margin for error, I set up my old fashioned hand quilting frame, stretch the quilt and hand baste it all before machine quilting.
    I would live to win the book! I’ve learned so much from her. I am so thankful to all of you teachers for sharing your knowledge . Looking forward to seeing you at Road to California.

    December 3, 2018
  29. Cathy Calloway said:

    I hate basting – use spray baste for small projects, and longarm bigger ones (no basting!)

    December 3, 2018
  30. Leslie levesque said:

    I love your small quilt, it’s lovely. I would love to win this book

    December 4, 2018
  31. Aurora Wolfe said:

    I have used safety pins, spray, which I wonder how healthy , even with ventilation! The powder is new to me, must try it!
    Jenny’s book may get me quilting again on machine, after just completing a Hawaiian Appliqué all hand stitched(Queen size)!

    December 4, 2018
  32. Sylvia said:

    I use safety pins for machine quilting and thread basting for hand quilting. I don’t care for sprays and fusibles, I worry about excess chemicals and adding another layer of glue to a project. Thanks for the chance to win!

    December 4, 2018
  33. Marian said:

    Love that you share your experiences with us. I need to spend more time practicing. I like spray basting for small projects. I pin baste on larger ones.

    December 4, 2018
  34. Cathy Clark said:

    I have tried it all for basting. Hand sewing with wash away thread. Had trouble with wrinkles on back. I have sprayed small pieces. Need to do outside, hard sometimes in Montana. I still get wrinkles on back sometimes. Pinning seems to work best for me. I spent yesterday on the floor pinning a king and two queens. Crazy, huh? I am going to try the powder. Should be able to do that inside. Thank you for getting the word out for Jenny.

    December 4, 2018
  35. Wendy Andersons said:

    Great hints- and I have lots of Kaffe! Can’t wait to try quilting from the back!

    December 4, 2018
  36. Susanne Hilton said:

    I would love to win this book. Thanks for your comments about Quilt Fuse. I’ve been wondering about it. I have used fusible batting for smaller project, but this sounds better. Then I can use my favorite batting! Thanks.

    December 4, 2018
  37. Wendy said:

    I’ve done spray basting, but find it messy. Tried basting with a glue stick once or twice, but not crazy about that, either. so, I mostly use pins. They don’t let the layers slip or crawl, but it’s time consuming to gett everything pinned.

    December 4, 2018
  38. Kim M said:

    I like spray basting. I have tried pin basting, but I always end up with puckers. I never have that problem when I spray baste!

    December 4, 2018
  39. Willow said:

    My favorite method for basting is using the 505 spray adhesive. So far so good, but I do appreciate learning about and trying new technics – you never know when you’ll need it 🙂

    December 4, 2018
  40. I like the back of the Kaffe fabrics as well. would have been cool to see lots of different colors on the back!!!

    December 4, 2018
  41. Margaret said:

    I always spray baste…my hands cannot take pinning. Quilting from the back sounds intriguing.

    December 5, 2018
  42. debby said:

    I would love to win Jenny’s book!

    December 5, 2018
  43. Laceflower said:

    I like spray basting, it’s fast and saves your hands and fingers because NO PINS!!

    December 5, 2018
  44. surgesca said:

    Just recently I ran into a reference for using Elmer’s Washable School Glue for a variety of basting uses while quilting. (See Rhonda Dort’s blog post here: I was curious and decided to give it a try binding some placemats. The results were great. I then went on to try using it as a basting technique for another set of placemats. It worked great. I don’t know that I would use it on a big project – probably back to safety pins – but it’s wonderful for smaller areas or where accuracy is critical. Want more details? Check here:

    December 5, 2018
  45. Barbara Townsend said:

    Gee, do I have a favorite way to baste? I spray baste small projects, and pin larger projects that I will quilt on the domestic. I only baste the edges as I go with the long arm. And I like to glue baste (Elmer’s) when piecing. Oh, and I like to stick glue baste when piecing curves. Guess my favorite way depends upon the project.

    December 5, 2018
  46. Mary said:

    Love that Kaffe fabric. Would love to win the book, too.

    December 6, 2018
  47. Claire norton said:

    Great hints!! Thanks!

    December 6, 2018
  48. marthaginn said:

    I enjoyed your post and your experiences with quilting from the back. To answer your question about basting method, I use spray (very sparingly and not near the edges to eliminate getting on furniture or floor) and safety pin the edges. The powder basting product looks interesting. Looking forward to more of Jenny’s book.

    December 6, 2018
  49. Brenda Perry said:

    My favorite (or should I say least onerous) way of basting is spray basting. I smooth my freshly pressed (using best press) backing out really well on my design wall and hold the edges in place with a few pins. Then I spray both sides of my batting outside on a sheet on the patio and pat it into place on the backing and replace the pins so they are also holding the batting. Then I smooth out the freshly pressed quilt top onto the other 2 layers. If I have to re-position, the pins hold the batting and backing in place. I may have to try the powder…..I would love to win Jenny’s book!

    December 6, 2018
  50. ANN D said:

    I pin baste my quilts. Thanks for the chance to win the book.

    December 6, 2018
  51. Bev Longford said:

    Oh this is such a good idea, I did that on a border recently, the quilt was just for our home so I thought it was a good way to practice free motion as I had not done any in a long time. Bev

    December 6, 2018
  52. Jayne P said:

    I have recently started spray basting.

    December 7, 2018
  53. Sandra L Ellison said:

    Love your example of quilting from the back!
    I’d love to win a copy of this book. Thanks for the opportunity.

    December 7, 2018
  54. Sandra Lee Ellison said:

    Oops! Forgot my favorite way of basting a quilt. I love 505 temporary adhesive spray.

    December 7, 2018
  55. Paula Dean said:

    Hi Catherine, Thank you for the opportunity to win a copy of Jenny’s book. The back of the quilt tends to be an afterthought and I would love to focus on it more. Your cabbages turned out great! I spray baste everything.

    December 7, 2018
  56. Janice said:

    If it is small and I am using cotton batting I don’t use any basting. Otherwise I use safety pins or sometimes left over bits of fusible scattered over the surface.

    December 7, 2018
  57. Dawn Gilbert said:

    I use spray basting because I don’t have to worry about pins. Powder sounds awesome since there is no overspray to worry about, new thing I need now

    December 8, 2018
  58. Pat in WNY said:

    I’m a pin baster, but that powder looks very interesting , especially for small projects. I’ll be interested in seeing other reviews of that product. But, the reason we’re here today is Jenny’s new book, I’d love to win a copy!

    December 8, 2018
  59. Sue H said:

    I am of the “I Only Pin Baste” group!

    December 8, 2018
  60. Bev Leischner said:

    Would love to have this book to further my free motion skills

    December 8, 2018
  61. Mary said:

    That’s beautiful and a great fabric for that project. I am quite interested in the powder for basting.

    December 8, 2018
  62. Michele W said:

    I can’t wait to try the powder for basting! I love the idea of quilting from the back and following the design of a large scale print. Thank you.

    December 8, 2018
  63. Jackie said:

    I’m a spray baster, I used to pin baste but found it frustrating having to stop and remove them and more then once quilted them.

    December 8, 2018
  64. Anne Coleman said:

    Well, I am super new to quilting, and I have read about safety pin basting, but for my small projects, I have been hand basting. I thought I would take the hand basting out, but it really doesn’t show. I don’t think hand basting would be too practical for a large quilt, but I haven’t gotten that far yet!!

    December 8, 2018
  65. Susan MacLeod said:

    Haven’t actually done much FMQ. My goal for 2019 is to learn how. Wish me luck.

    December 8, 2018
  66. Paula said:

    Thanks for participating in this blog hop. I’d love to win this book, as I’m like you and only quilt my smaller, more basic quilts. My most-used method of basting is spray basting. I can’t say it’s my favorite do to the smell and overspray. I’m excited to try the Free Fuse powder!

    December 9, 2018
  67. Jennafer Disbro said:

    I spray baste but hate the smell and mess. I’m going to look for the powder you mentioned above and give it a try!

    December 9, 2018
  68. For small projects I sometimes spray baste, sometimes use Hobbs fusible batting and sometimes don’t baste at all. For larger projects I usually pin baste densely.

    December 9, 2018
  69. I like spray basting but that powder sounds very interesting!

    December 9, 2018
  70. […] to my previous blog post here and tell me how you like to baste your quilts… it’s a simple as […]

    December 10, 2018
  71. Janet Smith said:

    I’ve tried pins and thread basting and they work well but have had best luck with spray basting. Which product I use does matter. Have not seen the powder in shops yet but I’m willing to give it a try. Love resource books for free motion which I typically do on small projects. I’m building up my shoulder muscles to handle a full size quilt.

    December 10, 2018
  72. Jen Hokanson said:

    I like to baste with curved safety pins. Thanks for this opportunity Catherine! Happy holidays.

    December 10, 2018
  73. Judy Kraft said:

    I’m old school and still depend on my safety pins for basting a quilt. The smell of an aerosol is too much for me.

    December 10, 2018
  74. Naida Faircloth said:

    I love spray basting (outdoors)

    December 10, 2018
  75. Fran S said:

    I would love to win this book. I don’t like to baste so therefore I am really far behind in my machine quilting. I will definitely check out this new way of basting with powder and an iron.

    December 10, 2018
  76. Peggy Luke Raines said:

    I pin baste because that’s the way I was taught. I’m a fairly new quilter and would love to learn new techniques.

    December 10, 2018
  77. Vicki D. said:

    That powder sounds really handy. I remember learning about a similar product called Bo Nash (I think) many years ago that art quilters sometimes use for small projects. I use pins. I find I don’t get any puckering in the back as long as I have been careful about taping the backing to a table. I use a spoon to help close all the pins.

    December 10, 2018
  78. Cindy Radtke said:

    Depends on the size of what I am quilting as to town I baste. Usually on small things I pin baste. I have something similar to the powder you shared called BoNash. I’ve only used it for appliqued so far but might have to try it for basting small quilts.

    December 10, 2018
  79. Laurie said:

    Hi Catherine. What a great idea to quilt from the back–such a pretty effect. Got to try that. Spray basting is easiest for me (Christa Watson has a very good tutorial), but the powder fuse looks interesting. I really enjoyed your embroidery class at Paducah last fall. Now to get organized so I can relax with it this winter!

    December 10, 2018
  80. Diann Smith said:

    A small quilt.. I spray baste. On larger quilts i safety pin baste and thank the quilter who taught me to use safety pins maybe 40 years ago.

    December 10, 2018
  81. Marilynn said:

    So far I have spray basted and pon basted, but I’m still learning!

    December 10, 2018
  82. Dixie Morris said:

    I am a spray baster because it’s easy.

    December 10, 2018
  83. Sharon Thomsen said:

    I pin baste for machine quilting and hand baste for hand quilting on a big frame. I have never been successful with spray basting.

    December 10, 2018
  84. Mary Leonard said:

    I only have completed one quilt, I spray basted, put safety pins every few inches, and slowly stitched straight lines. I did not like the finished quilt. Need more practice and would love the book. As of now, the next quilt will be done by a professional long arm until I get better!

    December 10, 2018
  85. RuthB said:

    I almost always use pin basting. I tried spray basting but found it awkward and messy so I wouldn’t use it again unless it is a small project.

    December 10, 2018
  86. Wannajava said:

    I still just pin baste on a couple of big old tables in the garage.
    I have to baste a quilt tomorrow and it is 1 degree outside. Brrr.

    December 10, 2018
  87. Deb Mac said:

    Spray basting-the smell and mess are a pain. Plastic gun basting-the darn plastic thingies always get stuck in the gun. Homemade spray basting-who wants to cook and have to wait for it to dry? Hand thread basting-seriously, are you out of your mind? Machine thread basting-who wants to pull all that thread? So that pretty much leaves me a pin baster pushing a quilt with 10 pounds of pins in it thru a machine. At least it gets lighter as you go. Has anyone tried wash away thread? Looking for a better sollution.

    December 11, 2018

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