Lesson for Quilted Feathers?

Do any of you want to do a group lesson for quilting feathers?  As I was quilting the Carpenter Star quilts, I realized what a perfect top this would be for doing a group feather making lesson.

There are places for doing triangular feathers, square feathers, rectangular feathers, round feathered wreaths, as well as several options for border feathers.  We could just feather the heck out of this top.  The top is easy to make, quick to make, could be made from stash fabrics for most of us.  If you haven’t made free motion feathers before, yours may not look so great but if you want to learn to  make them, they’re not going to look great til you take the bull by the horns and learn to do it.

If there’s enough interest in doing this as a group, I’ll make another top to have as an example.  I cannot give you a specific time frame due to the move and not knowing if we’re going to be renting or building or when I might see my longarm again.  It’s safe to guess that it will be September or October at the earliest before we get started.

Whether you quilt on a longarm, mid-arm or short arm, or even a domestic sewing machine, you can make gorgeous feathers if you want to.  I’ll be demoing on a longarm but I’ve seen fantastic feathers done on all kinds of machines, including DSMs.

If you want your feathers to show up nicely, use a fabric without too much pattern, like a tone on tone.  Oh, how I love those tone on tone fabrics.  If you’d rather your feathers get lost in the fabric, use a fabric with a busy pattern.  The plan is to do feathers within all of segments of the top, although you can do as few as you’d like.  I’m just saying . . if the above fabric were my example, I would probably have feathers in the blue, the gold, and the red fabrics.

So . . any interest in this project?


  1. 3

    Connie says

    Judy, I would love this! I have very little confidence in my machine quilting other than grids or stitch in the ditch, and i have a ton of tops that would benefit.

  2. 4

    margo says

    Feathering lesson(s)?

    YES! :0) I would love to have a feathering lesson from you.

  3. 8


    Count me in. My “feathers” have never been very good. Of course, I don’t practice them often because I want each of my quilts to look nice.

  4. 11


    Oh, yes, I am interested! My only attempts at feathers have been pretty pathetic, but feathers do make a quilt lovely. September or October would be great, as my daughter and DH will be back in school, so I can actually sew!

  5. 14

    SharO says

    Yes, it would be so helpful, sooner rather than later. It must be so hard for you to put your life on hold for an indefinite time.

  6. 15


    Why not, though I only have a Bernina, no long-arm yet. Heck, I have some fabric that’s great for practice pieces.

  7. 16

    Kathy in FL says

    Count me in for a lesson in feathers! I know I don’t practice my free motion quilting enough, and a lesson is just the thing I need to get me practicing again. September or October works great for me, too. Summer is always a busy time around here.

  8. 17

    Nan says

    Count me in, too. The only way I can do feathers is by printing them on paper, pinning to the quilt, and sew on the lines.

  9. 20

    Linda Fritchen says

    My feathers need help! Count me in and thanks in advance for the motivation to practice.

  10. 26


    Sounds good to me…..always love a chance to learn – and I have been RESISTING the quilting part, even after a couple of machine quilting classes. So, this would be a good time to BITE THE BULLET!

    sao in Midlothian, VA

  11. 27

    Diann Smith says

    Thanks for the feathers lesson in advance. I quilt on my DSM and have always wanted to do feathers but was a mite intimidated. But for sure I’m sick of the stipple.

  12. 30

    Kay in NE Wa says

    I also would like to be much better with feathers. Yours always are so beautiful. Looking forward to lessons.

  13. 31

    Julia says

    YES!!!!!!!! I would love to finally take the leap and give feathers a try. Thanks Judy! I really appreciate your willingness to share. I am in the process of making a quilt to send to you for someone in Joplin, what is the deadline for getting it to you?

  14. 32


    I quilt (not very well) on a DSM, but long to cover my quilts with feathers. I am definitely interested and will be patient for as long as it takes for the lessons to start.

  15. 33


    What a fabulous idea! I previously printed out the pattern for the Carpenter’s Star quilt, and planned to make one out of scraps. I’ll be ready!

  16. 34


    I would love a lesson. I’ve done them with paper but after watching your video really would like to do free motion. Whenever it fits your schedule is best.

  17. 35

    Angie says

    Would love a lesson on feathers and as a few others have said September / October would be perfect with the kids back in school.

  18. 36

    Judy says

    I would love to do feathers on my long arm, but am fairly new to the long arm and always end up with meandering quilting. I think some tips and inspiration is just what I need. I am a faithful reader of your blog and admire all that you accomplish with so much ease.

  19. 38

    carol says

    Count me in. I want to learn how to machine quilt. I only have a regular sewing machine. Is the technique the same?

  20. 43

    Debbie B says

    Yes, I would love a demo of feathers. Mine are not very good and I could use some pointers and of course some more practice. Thanks for the offer. I look forward to it.

  21. 45

    Alberta in N GA says

    yes, I would also love a demo on feathering… I have done almost no machine quilting but I would love to do this. I would be doing it on my home sewing machine. I would make the quilt so that I could do it as you are demonstrating. Probably should have the quilt pattern soon as I would need a little time to make it.

  22. 47

    Susan T says

    Count me in. I’ve quilted feathers on my home machine, but I’m always looking for ways to improve!

  23. 49

    Marilyn Smith says

    YES! I have practiced a lot but mine are most certainly far from ready to go on a quilt. Late Sept. And Oct. Would be perfect for me!

  24. 51

    Linda says

    Absolutely! I am terrible at machine quilting and would love to improve…I know practice, practice, practice!

  25. 53


    Yes, Yes, Yes. I really want to learn. I so terrible at them – I’ve been practicing on paper to get the hang of just drawing them. I better go draw some more so I can be ready. Oh yeah, better get a quilt ready too. lol!! Thanks Judy.

  26. 54

    Carol says

    I would love to learn how to do the feathers. I would just be using my sewing machine but I have seen one lady that uses only her sewing machine and does a fantastic job on large quilts. Thanks for the offer to teach.

  27. 59

    Jeannette Hansen says

    You couldn’t have come up with a more popular subject, could you? Of course we want to let you teach us to flutter. Thank you for all the wonderful stuff you offer. And may you be blessed with the very best out of town home ever!

  28. 60


    I’d love to see how to do feathers. I’ve been poised to start machine quilting for a long time now, but just haven’t taken the plunge. I’m always looking for motivation to get me going. Thanks for all you do for us, Judy!!

  29. 61

    Linda in PA says

    I’d like to join in, too. My feathers are pretty pathetic. Thanks for offering. September or October should work for me. Good luck with your move.

  30. 62


    I’m game. I’m so tired of meandering on my DSM, I’d like to learn how you do feathers. I’ll make this top from stash and just tell myself it doesn’t matter how they turn out. 🙂

  31. 63

    Verna in MN says

    Yes, I’d love to do this. The timing is right, and this is the incentive I need to go beyond ‘stitching in the ditch’!!!! Thank you!

  32. 64

    Jo Anne says

    Definitely interested, Judy. Oh, how I feel for you with all the unrest concerning your move. Best wishes.

  33. 65

    Penny Holliday says

    Yes, please count me in for a lesson in feathering. Later into the fall would be great timing for me, also! Thanks for all that you do especially sharing in quilting & cooking!!
    I know that you are on countdown to moving day but think my head would explode at this point with what is going on now to find a roof over your head for your move to TX. My suggestion would be to rent the house w/ caddy – oh my that is so funny – so you that have someplace to go. Then when you arrive you take charge of finding a house to purchase that you could live in!! Just sayinn …….

  34. 66

    Elizabeth says

    Hi Judy, I have tried making feathers before but it is like you said, they don’t really turn out perfect. I think this would be a wonderful chance to improve my skills. To top it all off my sewing room might just be tidied up in time to join in. LOL

  35. 67


    Yes, I would love to….I will be using my domestic machine..and I have wanted to attempt feathers for a long, long time so I’m in!

  36. 70

    Kathy S. says

    Yes, please! Feathers would be fun to learn (I hope). My mid arm should be back together in her own room by then and I will get to use her.

  37. 71

    Sherry says

    I love quilted feathers and have a quilter’s edition Bernina and would love to have you teach us how to do a good feather on my DMS.

  38. 72

    Jaylene says

    I would love to learn how to make feathers. I just recently bought a long arm and really haven’t had a lot of time to practice with feathers.

  39. 73


    Being a fairly new long arm quilter (I’ve had my machine 9 weeks) I would love to have some feather instruction. Also, do you have any recommendations of books that teach quilting design principals: how to decide how to quilt a particular top?

  40. 77


    Oh yeah – This sounds like something I would really like! I’m pretty new working on my longarm and could use all the help I can get. Thanks

  41. 81

    Chris says

    I could most definitely use all the help I can get to do feathers. I have tried on my HQ16, but alias I have not been able to get it. So I vote Yes, please.

  42. 82


    yes. would love to participate. I actually HAVE a Carpenter’s Wheel top that is waiting to be quilted. The late September/early October timeframe would be perfect for me.

  43. 84

    mary says

    Please!!! yes I want to take some lessons DId my first ever feathers in a project Linus top last week and I am so glad it was a very busy print Mary

  44. 92


    I would love this. I’ve tried my hand at feathers a couple times and am not doing to well, so something like this that made me practice would be really great!

  45. 93


    I’m in. I have done them and they turned out bad, and good, but need to find a way my brain can ALWAYS do them good.
    And I HAVE been practicing, but some ways work better than others. And I need to do them all the time, for a year or something….good thing I have a lot of tops to work on!

  46. 94

    carol c says

    Yes please. I like the carpenter star pattern as well, maybe I’ll have time to get a top ready. If not I’ll use one that’s been waiting in ‘the pile’.

  47. 95

    JoAn GODFREY says

    sounds great. i need to start sometime. i can’t even draw patterns, let alone sew with a machine!!!!!!!

  48. 97

    Cher says

    I would love some help with machine quilting, especially feathers, this is something I am in need of practice. Looking forward to it, whenever it may be. Thanks Cher

  49. 99

    Mel Meister says

    I’ve done some free motion feathers and know how much fun they can be. I’d love to see how you do it. I do have to quilt on my 730 though, no longarm here.

  50. 100

    carol c says

    i would appreciate any learning of ANY machine quilting, especially feathers. I have never machine quilted, and want to on my home
    sewing machine if possible. thank YOU Judy

  51. 102

    Darlene S says

    Yes, yes, yes. Count me in too. I’ve been very reluctant to try feathers on the long arm. I really NEED a start and motivation. Dar

  52. 104

    Vida says

    YES!!!! I have an HQ16, but have not done as much on it as I have wanted to. Still learning a little at a time. My husband plans to retire soon, and this is why I got it when I did. feathers sound great!

  53. 105

    Carolyn says

    Definitely! Seeing the feathers you so beautifully do on your quilts makes this a demo worth waiting for!

  54. 107

    Deb says

    Although I’ve been using an Inspira frame w/Husqvarna for 2-1/2 years, I never pass up the opportunity to learn from a master, lol!

  55. 109

    Roberta says

    Love to learn how to fit the feathers to the area available. Thanks for the offer to teach this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  56. 111


    I would love to learn feathering. At this moment, am short of cash for any extravagance of joining a FMQ advance class.

  57. 116

    Judy says

    I would love to be a part of these lessons. I am machine quilting most of my quilts. I am learning to use the BSR on my newish machine. Thanks!

  58. 117

    Grace Hamilton says

    A friend of mine forwarded your link to me. I am dieing to learn how to do feathers on my long-arm, Handi-quilter. Is it too late?