An Old Idea for Symmetry and Bobbin Sewing.


I thought I’d show how I got this design drawn up.  It’s simple and I probably learned it in elementary school.  It’s one of my favorite techniques.  At the end, you can see how this sewing technique is done.


1. Start with a simple curving line that goes around the page.    I used a regular pencil first.  If I didn’t like the line, I could erase.  I went over it with a charcoal pencil.  A soft pencil will work too. 


2.  Fold in half and rub the page with a flat edge, like a ruler or credit card to transfer the image.

Open it up and trace over the transferred lines with the charcoal pencil.


3. Fold it the other direction and repeat step 2



Add or remove lines or motifs as you see fit.


For the Sewing:

Bobbin sewing means that I’m using a heavy thread in the bobbin because it wont go through a needle.  So the work is done up side down- meaning the nice design work will be facing down while you sew.  Read on and you will see.

1. Trace the image onto iron on, tear away stabilizer to the wrong side of the fabric.  I use a Sharpie so that the image is crisp and clean.


2.  Set up your machine:

  • Wind the bobbin with a heavy thread like YLI candlelight, used here.
  • Drop the feed dogs and attach the darning foot for free motion sewing.
  • Use a needle thread that matches your bobbin thread.


  • Adjust the tension.  I set mine to 6.  Test on an outside edge of the stabilized fabric.  Watch for the needle thread being pulled through.


Tension 6 is on the left on the second picture.  5 is still pulling threads out to the top.

I forgot this step and this happened…


I spent about 20 minutes pulling these threads out.

3. Start your sewing.  With this design, I overlapped in some places but I would often pull up the needle and presser foot and move onto a new area.  At the beginning and end of stitching, take a couple of extra stitches in that spot to anchor the threads.  Don’t cut until you are finished sewing.


I love the gold against a colorful fabric like this one.  The texture of the heavy thread really makes it stand out.

This is the quilt I used this on


Share your thoughts! 🙂




About BarbaraZ

Multi-media artist specializing in the fiber/ quilting medium. View all posts by BarbaraZ

2 responses to “An Old Idea for Symmetry and Bobbin Sewing.

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