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Floating stitches on a modern baby quilt makes all the difference

by Sarah Vanderburgh

Today I start exploring one of the stitch techniques on the PFAFF performance icon. In yesterday’s post I gave the fabric requirements and cutting instructions for the modern baby quilt. Today I’ll show the floating stitch technique built into the PFAFF performance icon used in the making of the modern baby quilt.

PFAFF performance icon

Floating stitch menu

Floating stitches are found in section 8, the Techniques stitches. Submenu 5 shows all of the floating stitches built into the performance icon.

Touch the menu icon in the top right of the Sewing Mode on the large Color Touch Screen. From here you can select your stitch and find some important details, like which presser foot to use to best execute the stitch.

Floating stitch menu

Presser feet for floating stitches

With my stitch selected, the bottom right of the screen tells me the presser foot to use – the Bi-Level Guide Foot included with the machine – and gives me written instructions on what to do with my fabric. Reading further I find out the Bi-Level Guide Foot is used when I’m stitching on one piece of fabric folded over; for use with two fabrics, I will use the 1A foot. Both of these feet engage with the IDT to feed the fabrics evenly under the needle. Touch the word LOAD to bring your selected stitch into Sewing Mode.

Presser feet for floating stitches

Sew the rectangle units

To make a rectangle unit, select a floating stitch. Put two Fabric Creations 100% cotton fabric rectangles right sides together, and place a 1 strip of INSPIRA Fast and Easy Tear-A-Way Light stabilizer on the bottom of the pair along one long edge.

Stitch the floating stitch down the edge of the pair. Remove the tear-a-way stabilizer then gently pull the fabrics open to reveal the floating stitches.

TIP Have the edge of the two-layered fabrics and stabilizer lined up with the inner metal edge of the presser foot; this way the seam allowance will stay intact.

Fabric edge lined up with inner metal edge of presser foot 1A

Repeat to make the following number of rectangle units:

  • Use yellow Gütermann thread to make 4 white and blue rectangle units – I used floating stitch 8.5.11.
  • Use blue Gütermann thread to make 4 green and white rectangle units – I used floating stitch 8.5.6.
  • Use white Gütermann thread to make 8 blue and green rectangle units – I used floating stitch 8.5.10 on 4 and floating stitch 8.5.2 on the remaining 4.

You could chain stitch all of the rectangle units of the same pair to make good use of your sewing time – if you do, be sure to press the Stitch restart button so the floating stitches start at the same spot on each pair. Or don’t! It could be fun to see the stitch not look the same from unit to unit.

I forgot to take photos of the units before quilting; the photo below shows a white and blue rectangle unit with its floating stitch. I also quilted down each side of the stitch with thread that blended into the fabrics to emphasize the floating stitch on the quilt.

Floating stitch 8.5.11

 The floating stitches really add some character to the rectangle units. I imagined creating stars and lakes and mountains while I was stitching mine! Let’s keep this stitching adventure going with the PFAFF performance icon in tomorrow’s post. See you then!

This is part 2 of 5 in this series

Go back to part 1: This modern baby quilt steals the show!

Go to part 3: HSTs and piecing a baby quilt top with PFAFF performance icon


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