When I did this pillow I had been doing FMQ for 3 months and 3 weeks! 

I saw this fabric and it spoke to me! Who knew fabric could do mental telepathy and be so…so…convincing! It insisted it looked like suede or leather, said I should buy it and make a pillow that looked like tooled leather. I laughed. I’m no fabric whisperer.

But somehow I found myself taking the fabric home to see if I could rise to the challenge. I studied tooled leather designs to get an idea of how I might simulate it with quilting. I chose a color of Glide thread which I later realized was named “leather”! Synchronicity! I drew my design on tracing paper then cut out one of the feather shapes and used it as a very rough template (outlines) for placement. I marked the fabric lightly with a chalk pencil. I then started fearlessly quilting. This was my first time doing feathers, and I can’t tell you how risky it is to do it in contrasting thread, knowing every little wobble will show up, but I’d watched enough videos to get the idea though. 


I settled on a random fill between the feathers and flower, using Wonderfil 100 wt thread in black. This helped darken the fabric, too, giving it a stained leather look. As you can see my backtracking isn’t spot on but as you will hear me say many times I do not want anything I do to look like it was done by a computer! Seeing the “human component” (wobbles) gives it personality and character, and that hand-created look.


I created a “piano keys” border as I quilted this so I would have a nice flange on the edges of the pillow. It came out better than expected! Next time I might experiment with colored threads, too! 

© Beverly Guhl 2018