It’s about the basics, and the ‘base’ as well. That is, the paper fabric base. A leftover pattern piece, song lyrics, a scrap of organza. Once I had all the embellishments in place, and once the last layer of white craft tissue was put on top, (while it was still wet with glue/water mixture from the muslin base), it was lightly painted with diluted paint; about 50/50 dilution. Whether you choose to use acrylic paints, or inks, it doesn’t matter. Keep it light. Or add more color… just keep in mind that if you get heavy-handed with the paint, the texture gets thicker. Not a bad thing. Just so you know. Once dry, and ironed so it was mostly flat, I stamped it, adding a favorite doodling of ‘trio’s of white dots’ as I call them, using a white Sharpie paint marker. Lastly, I fused a flower onto the base.
Now for that free motion zig zag! Once you master this stitch, you will feel like the Beverly Hill Billies striking oil in their back yard! Okay, maybe not quite that exciting! But still… I’m not so sure!
When teaching this in my free motion class, I am often asked “what stitch length do we set?” depends! In this instance I chose a 2.0 width. Remember… how you move the fabric (from left to right only) determines the WIDTH. Which means it turns into a straight line! COOL. And FUNKY. LOVE! And I not only like the look, it’s alot of fun to do. As to length… no need to worry, if you move up and down, it turns into a zig zag… and depending on how fast you move, you will either stretch it out, or make it look more traditionally, compact!
YES… it takes practice, and control, and being steady with the stitching. Too much jerking and you will certainly wrestle with a bent or broken needle. Too fast, and you may shred your thread. I love this stitch mostly for it’s wow factor with variegated thread, and for the functionality I get, in accomplishing what I call free motion applique! It’s that simple. And it’s a wonderful skill to cultivate, use and enJoy!