I have been machine quilting my UFO of the month and having a great time with a free motion swirly design. Many quilters don't enjoy machine quilting, but I have to admit that I love it. It's really fun when everything goes well. And with time and practice, it almost always goes well. My goal is to have fairly even stitch lengths, no puckers or folds in the quilt top or backing, smooth design movements and no skipped stitches or thread snaps.
Through trial and error I have learned exactly what my machine likes. And since the machine is the boss of me, I do everything required to make things run smoothly for the process, including using my machine's favourite needles (topstitch 90), threads (exclusively Aurifil 50), feet (a very old Brother stippling foot), and quilting speed (not too fast). I also know that the quilting needs to start in the middle of the quilt and work slowly in a circular way toward the outside of the quilt to push any excess fabric to the edges. If the quilt has been basted really well, there won't be any excess, but that rarely happens (for me).
The Friday Night Quilters are coming over tonight, so we'll see what mischief we can get into. So happy to be feeling like myself again after the horrendous influenza experience earlier this month.
Have a great day!