How to Free-motion Quilt a Spooky Halloween Border with Sugar Skulls

How to Free-motion quilt skulls

Tombstones, and Jack-o-lanterns and skeletons, Oh, my!

Whistle past the graveyard as you stitch the Spooky Halloween Border!

How to free-motion quilt skulls

I’m Lori Kennedy of Lori Kennedy Quilts and like most quilters, I LOVE Halloween and Halloween inspired quilts! Create a fabulous border on your next Halloween project by stitching a spooky fence motif and then add a few creepy creature embellishments. Quilt simple gravestones, add a Jack-o-Lantern (We All Sew tutorial HERE) and then try skulls.  Halloween is a great time to practice hand drawn quilted elements—there’s no need for perfection!

How to free-motion quilt skulls - step one

Begin stitching on the bottom line of the border.  Stitch a simple arrow shape to begin the graveyard fence.  Stitch along the horizontal line to begin the next element, the skull.

Stitch a vertical line, then a short horizontal line and a short vertical line.

How to free-motion quilt skulls - step two

Add a semi-circle.

How to free-motion quilt skulls - step three

Stitch a small messy spiral to create the right eye socket.

How to Free-motion Quilt Skulls - step four

Add another messy spiral.

How to free-motion quilt skulls - step six

Stitch a small triangle for the nose.

How to free-motion quilt skulls - step seven

Stitch under the right eye socket and then stitch a short vertical line.

How to free-motion quilt skulls - step eight

Add a zig zag from right to left and then overstitch the zig zag.

How to free-motion quilt skulls - step eight

Stitch a vertical line to the baseline and then stitch over several stitches to add more elements.

How to free-motion quilt skulls - step eight

Add an arched line to create a gravestone and add lettering like Frank N. Stein or “I told you I was sick.”

Dia de Muertos Sugar Skulls

Once you learn the basic skull motif, quilt a large version and embellish with a variety of motifs. Almost any quilt motif would be suitable for the decorative Sugar Skulls.

For more quilting motifs, ideas and tips, be sure to check out my latest book, 25 Days to Better Machine Quilting, Martingale.

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