NOTE : I no longer promote Craftsy/Bluprint as I used to due to the way the subscription is currently being carried out. I had the issue of cancelling my subscription when the company changed hand and I find that cancelling through calls is inconvenient. However, I do still stand behind these classes I promote and if you are subscribed, you can surely check these classes I recommend on the platform. If you are looking for another online platform to learn craft such as quilting, do check out CreativeBug. It is much cheaper in subscription (subscribe now 3 months for only $5). Thank you.

I am sharing with you today how I quilted block 20 – Irish Chain Variation.

If you are new here, this post is a part of my quilt-as-you-go my Sewcial Bee Sampler, a sew-along hosted by Sharon Holland and Maureen Cracknell. I plan to share along the process with some tips and tutorial.

As usual, I have two blocks made for two quilts, one with custom quilting and one with allover quilting. Both would be a great practice if you are looking towards improving your free-motion skill. I am still practicing myself, especially with the custom quilting. I am learning as I go, so let’s do this together!

Some links provided here are affiliate links for your convenience. Please find my full disclosure here.


Quilt as you go

Quilt as you go block-by-block is one method you could opt for when you want to make quilting large quilts on your domestic machine feasible. It is one of my go-to methods especially if I want to skip the heavy work pushing through large quilts within my machine throat space.


free motion quilting block by block

Besides, I love the fact that I can easily finish blocks by blocks and even have a fancy backing like this one I made earlier. If you are interested to learn how I piece the block together, here is one way how to do it – using small sashing strips.


Spray Basting Quilt Sandwiches

In order to quilt-as-you-go block-by-block, I first made each block into a quilt sandwich, basting with Spray Baste adhesive. I love spray basting as it removes the need to undo pins as you quilt especially for small blocks like these.

Spray Basting quilt as you go Block by Block

You can choose to use the same fabrics for the backing, however, I decided to do mine scrappy solid for the allover quilting quilt and scrappy printed for the custom quilt. The scrappy solid backing will look something like this one I made earlier.

I recommend having about 2-3″ wider batting and backing to make it easier to quilt the area around the edges of the block. I made mine kind of tight, and I find that it is hard to move the quilt with so little to hold on to when the quilting gets so close to the edge. Well, lesson learned.


Allover Quilting Motif: Row By Row Loops


For the allover quilting, I opt for a simple row by row loops. This motif is a lot of fun, relaxed and I am loving the organic non-perfect forms of each loops to the other. The textures is not too bad for a row by row quilting, though I am not sure whether it will be suitable for larger scale for larger quilts.



Here is how I did it. Freely, and naturally without worrying too much about the spaces and the sizes. I try to keep it within a certain range and space, but not really trying to get them perfect.

try it!

Just have fun!

free motion quilting loops


Custom free motion quilting on quilt-as-you-go blocks

For the other quilt, each block is going to be custom quilted, which means each will be designed accordingly with the block pattern.

The benefit of using quilt-as-you-go block is that it is so much easy to maneuver with small blocks and custom quilting is made easier under the throat of a domestic machine. Plus, your shoulder should thank you too!


Custom Free Motion Quilting

Starting from the center, Again I took the advantage of the center fabric motif and quilted those flowers and added leaves to fill in any empty unquilted areas

In between these flower blocks, I added a curved feather going all around the center 9 patch.

This was followed by a jump between each square patches with a half-orange peel all the way around. I finished the grey frame with some scallops and a little jewel in the center. I didn’t want to do feathers in the small width border. Besides, the block has already some feathers in the center of the block.




If you want to try free motion quilt feather motifs yourself, I have a free course that you can sign up right here to get started.  

Well, if you decide to join along or have any questions, drop me a comment. I will be happy to help where I can! In the meantime, you can also check these free motion quilting tips!

How to Quilt As You Go A Sampler Quilt

Click here to related Archive posts.
until next time, have fun sewing and quilting!


1 Comment

  1. Barbara Opett Reply

    Great news letter! A lot of useful information. I look forward to it weekly now. I’ve been jumping from project to project and of course doing the Comminity Sampler, were almost done there. Love your blocks
    Have a good week and sew on! ???

Write A Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.